The World Music Expo (WOMEX) announced today that Iranian kamancheh virtuoso Kayhan Kalhor (Iran/USA) is the winner of the WOMEX Artist Award 2019.
Kalhor is set to receive the prominent award at the 25th anniversary
edition of WOMEX in Tampere, Finland, on Sunday, October 27, 2019. Kayhan
Kalhor will perform as a duo together with Erdal Erzincan on bağlama in what
will be the final concert of WOMEX 2019.
Kayhan Kalhor stated: “Receiving the WOMEX Artist Award means so much to me. The award is recognition of the rich culture of my homeland Iran and an ageless Persian art that thrives and is beloved throughout the world. As forces arise across the globe and push for divisiveness, borders and intolerance, music brings us together and reminds us of our common humanity. As a citizen of the world, I am humbled by this recognition and stand with artists whose music fosters unity.”
The WOMEX 2019 closing ceremony will also include the Award for Professional Excellence and the annual Label Award, both of which are yet to be announced.
Created and led by Kayhan Kalhor and Shujaat Husain Khan, the Ghazal Ensemble has created an Indo-Persian fusion which blends two distinctive classical musics: Persian (Iranian) and Hindustani (North Indian). Intertwined for centuries in Northern India, these musics share some formal elements which allow for an exquisite and harmonious dialogue between the two traditions.
Shujaat Husain Khan, son and disciple of master sitarist Ustad Vilayat Khan, is one of the great artists of North Indian classical music today. (Both father and son played to a full house at the Flint Center as part of the Classical Music of India concert presented by Arts & Lectures last season). A sitar virtuoso, Khan is also the group’s vocalist, blending his gentle baritone with the melodic lines of the instruments.
Kayhan Kalhor, one of the most important Iranian musicians of his generation, is a virtuoso of the kamancheh and setar. Improvisation lies at the heart of both Indian and Persian classical music. According to Kalhor, “The music that we play together reflects the improvisatory styles of our cultures. This means taking a small idea or melodic form or phrase and developing it into something much larger, beyond its primary character.”
The Persian and Indian traditions are, in a sense, musical cousins. In fact, there is a connection that goes beyond the notes themselves: Several centuries of Moghul rule in northern India left a strong imprint on Hindustani music: a result of the mysticism, poetry, and musical subtleties of the Persian language and culture. The name Ghazal reflects that link: in the Persian tradition, a ghazal is a specific genre of poetry, characterized by an unusual blend of ecstatic spirituality and earthy desires. In India, ghazal has evolved into a form of semi-classical music that remains popular to this day, and usually takes the form of a love ballad.
Kamancheh virtuoso and composer Kayhan Kalhor was born in Tehran (Iran). He began his musical studies at the age of seven. Kayhan Kalhor performed with the prestigious National Orchestra of Radio and Television of Iran and the Shayda Ensemble of the Chavosh Cultural Center while still a teenager.
Deeply devoted to the Iranian classical repertoire (radif), Kayhan Kalhor was further inspired to study regional folkloric traditions, which added additional dimensions to his improvisations and acted as springboards for cross-cultural explorations.
Since then, Kalhor has performed and recorded with Iran’s greatest instrumentalists and singers, including Mohammad Reza Shajarian and Shahram Nazeri, and toured the world as a soloist.
He co-founded the Dastan, Ghazal: Persian & Indian Improvisations, and Masters of Persian Music ensembles and has appeared with the New York Philharmonic and the Orchestre National de Lyon.
He was the featured soloist on the soundtrack of Francis Ford Coppola’s Youth Without Youth, a score on which he collaborated with Osvaldo Golijov.
Kayhan Kalhor is an original member of Yo-Yo Ma’s acclaimed Silk Road Ensemble and his works are heard on all of the ensemble’s albums.
The Shanghai Isaac Stern International Violin Competition, in Shanghai, China, awarded Kayhor the 2018 Isaac Stern Human Spirit award. The award celebrates individuals and groups, from any part of the world, who have made an outstanding contribution to our understanding of humanity through music.
In 2019, Kayhor won the WOMEX (World Music Expo) Artist Award.
Whistesburg, USA – The Association for Independent Music (AFIM) has announced the finalists for the Indie Awards, the most important music awards for the independent record industry. In the contemporary world music category, the 5 contenders are:
Tom Landa & the Paperboys
In the traditional world music category, the finalists are:
Kayhan Kalhor & M.R. Shajarian
Various Artists (Matouqin)
The winners will be announced at the indie Awards Show on May 5th at the Regal Biltmore Hotel in Los Angeles during AFIM’s annual convention.
Your Connection to traditional and contemporary World Music including folk, roots and various types of global fusion