TEHRAN, July 31 (Mehr News Agency) -- The first night of Mohammadreza Shajarian's concert series passed pleasantly in Tehran on Monday, although the living legend of Iranian traditional music declined the applauding fans' request for him to perform his smash hit "Morgh-e Sahar" (The Bird of Dawn).
"Morgh-e Sahar", a 1960s-piece composed by Morteza Neydavud (1900-1990) based on a poem by Malek ush-Sho'ara Bahar, has been performed by many Iranian musicians and vocalists and Shajarian's version is one of the best.
Ava band comprising (from left) Majid Derakhshani, Mohammad Firuzi, Mohammadreza Shajarian, Homayun Shajarian, Saeid Farajpuri, and Hossein Rezaei performs at Tehran's National Grand Hall on July 30. (Mehr/Alireza Soltani)
Shajarian, along with his new band Ava, comprising his son Homayun, Majid Derakhshani, Mohammad Firuzi, Hossein Rezaei, and Saeid Farajpuri, performed pieces including "Sarv-e Chaman", "Word of Love", "Lovers' Clamor", "Meeting", "Dance of the Butterfly", and "The Wine of Love".
The audience clamored for a performance of "Morgh-e Sahar" at the end of the concert. However Shajarian said that the band would perform another "nice" tasnif (song) instead, which had been composed by Farajpuri.
After the band had left the stage, the audience continued to applaud for about ten minutes while shouting "love you, master" and again demanding "Morgh-e Sahar".
The band returned onstage, repeatedly bowed to the audience but finally left the venue without heeding the request for a rendition of the adored piece.
Song requests have met with positive responses in Shajarian's previous concerts.
The series of concerts, which have been entitled "Sadi, Master of Words", will be running at the National Grand Hall until August 6.
Shajarian respecting rules
A day before the beginning of the performances, Shajarian's publicist Hamidreza Nurbakhsh said that the first night of the concert might have to be cancelled due to certain problems between to the band and the police.
It is demanded that music bands pay the police a sum of money for the performance of concerts, and the amount is determined by mutual agreement.
Shajarian's band refused payment and consequently the police prevented technicians from entering the concert hall.
The fee is allegedly used by the police to provide security and traffic controls necessitated by the function.
"If such payments by artists planning to give concerts are legally binding, then I respect the rule," Shajarian told the Mehr News Agency on Tuesday.
He said he had not been informed of the necessity of such payments on previous occasions when he had given concerts in Iran, and added "My publicist made the payment himself. If I had been informed about it, I would have tackled the problem sooner."
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