Persian ney (flute) virtuoso and vocalist Hossein Omoumi is set to perform a concert of Persian classical and Sufi music on Sunday, April 29, 2017 at Roulette in Downtown Brooklyn, New York. This is the closing concert of A World in Trance festival.
Hossein Omoumi has toured and recorded with many of Iran’s leading artists, including Parissa, and introduced significant innovations to the ney and Iranian percussion. He will be joined by vocalist Jessika Kenney, Amir Koushkani (setar and tar lutes), and Hamin Honari (tombak , drum, daf). Their program of mystical and spiritual Persian music is influenced by the Isfahan school, which is based on vocal repertoire and poetry; included are works by Rumi and Attar.
Hossein Omoumi was born in 1944 in Isfahan, Iran, and commenced his musical education singing with his father. At age 14, he studied the ney, the traditional reed flute of Iran.
At the same time as he was studying architecture, Hossein was accepted as a tutorial student at the National Superior Conservatory of Music in Tehran. He worked with maestros Mahmud Karimi and Farhad Fakhreddini, and subsequently went on to study with acclaimed ney master Hassan Kassaei.
His career as a performer has included appearances at many major festivals and concert halls in Europe and the United States.
A distinguished scholar and teacher of Persian music, he taught at the National Conservatory, Tehran University, and the Center for Preservation and Dissemination of Music in Tehran; the Center for Oriental Music Studies (CEMO) of Sorbonne University in Paris; and the ethnomusicology departments of the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA), and the University of Washington (UW) in Seattle.
Currently, he is the Maseeh Professor in Persian Performing Arts of Music at the University of California, Irvine (UCI). He has done wide-ranging research on the ney and Iranian percussion, and arranged and composed lessons to teach the standards of classical Persian music under the title of ‘Pish Radif.’
The movie Classical Persian Music – Hossein Omoumi from Isfahan to Irvine, that documents his goal to make classical Persian music widely available, was released in 2017, supported by the National Endowment for the Arts.