Maestro G.H. Aslani
Maestro G.H. Aslani, Honoris Causa was somewhat surprised in a congregation of the Iranian-American Community of the US Northeast (New York Metro) in recognition of his seminal contributions to music, philanthropy, volunteerism and altruism. The festive event was held in Club176 of Wychoff, northern New Jersey in the evening of Saturday December 11, 2010. The Crystal Globe Award Citation reads:
HONORING OSTAD G. H. ASLANI
Maestro G.H. Aslani is recognized with much pride by the Iranian-American Community and by the people of Iran for his seminal contributions to the advancement of Iranian and Western music, and for the philanthropic endowment he created to promote K-12 education for women in his rural hometown.
As the speechless, nonetheless, joyous Mr. and Mrs. Aslani, along with a large number of dignitaries, friends and fans, well over a hundred, sat after dinner in the Club 176 Hall, the evening's program continued with classical piano masterpieces played by Aslani's former students, performance by the Noavaran Ensemble (www.NoavaranEnsemble.com) of Aslani's recent composition Beyond Solitude, poetry reading, folk singing and even a surprise song by Nader who boasted about his seventeen years of cooperation with Mr. Aslani. The program concluded by a nostalgically uplifting acceptance speech of the award by Aslani himself. The following poem was recited as a part of musical ensemble performance:
HUMANITY (a poem by Davood N. Rahni)
Humanity is our common thread
Human humility and dignity is our common aspirations in life,
Harmony with mother earth is our common cradle for survival;
Have we not yet
then learnt from past history of repressions and bloodshed,
That the criminal culprits and oppressors are short-lived?
And granted we momentarily capitulated the olds,
How do we then cope with the inevitable energy of the youths?
And So--why then resort to violence and confrontations,
When rational dialogue will far better achieve justice, tranquility and peace in the global village?
A select recent number of Maestro G. H. Aslani's musical compositions are as follows:
Flute, Harp, Guitar, and classical Iranian Noavaran Ensemble (2010)
● Beyond Solitude for Flute and Piano (2010)
● Saddle-Point for solo Piano (2010)
● Symbolic Emotion for Flute, Clarinet, Horn, Trumpet, Tympani Percussion, Amplified Classic Guitar and Double Bass (2007)
● String Quartet No.1 (2006)
● Bridge for Flute, Marimba, Violin and Cello (2006)
● A Piece for Brass (2005)
● Solo for B Flat Clarinet (2005)
● Solo for Flute (2005)
● Hope and Hopelessness for solo Piano (2005)
● Eight pieces of lyric music for solo Piano, Tehran, Iran (2003)
● Persian Bridge, Synthesis - Electronic Music (2003)
● Brighter World, Vocal, (2003)
● A piece for Piano and Orchestra, performed by Grand Orchestra of Radio Iran, recorded at Radio Iran's Studio #8 (1971)
● 22 Songs composed for a number of Iranian singers, recorded at Radio Iran Studios (1964-1971)
And last but least, Mr. Aslani's biography is as follows:
Maestro Aslani (www.aslanitempo.com ) was born in 1936 in the village of ShaGhaji near Guilan's City of Rasht in the Caspian Sea region of Iran. Orphaned in a rather affluent family, upon completing primary school, and due to harsh mistreatment by his guardian, he left his beloved mother behind and reluctantly moved alone to Tehran in 1952 where he worked odd jobs while completing his high school and music educations in the evening. This led to his admissions into the World (Western) Classical Music Conservatory in 1957, where he studied until 1964 under the tutelage of professors Tatiana Kharatian for piano, Hooshang Ostovar for harmony, orchestration and composition, and the late Freidoon Farzaneh for theory and sofegio.
Mr. Aslani joined the Iranian State Radio and TV Organization in 1961 as a composer, arranger and pianist, meanwhile giving private lessons to students, some of whom later became renowned musicians in their own right. Mr. Aslani was concurrently able to compose or arrange music for a great number of nationally recognized singers of the time such as Aref, Ahdieh, Vigen, and the late Mohammad Nouri, just to name a few. Throughout, he maintained an academic affiliation with the Iranian Institute of Musical Education where he helped prepare prospective students for entrance into Tehran University's highly competitive fine arts curriculum.
April 1, 1972 was a pivotal date in Mr. Aslani's personal and professional life, as with much trepidation, he and his wife, lifelong friend and companion, Alampida Betyaghoub, had to leave their motherland Iran, for the United States. In the U.S., they endured a multitude of challenges, but triumphed in life again. Aslani was able to not only overcome these obstacles, but also contribute toward musical education in the lower Hudson valley, thereby showcasing a more real humane perspective of the Persian history and culture in that region. He has taught classical piano to hundreds of students, many of whom have gone on to become successful musicians in their own rights, graduating from renowned colleges in the nation. Aslani's early academic and scholarly endeavors in Iran were later complemented in New York by a master's degree in contemporary music composition and orchestration, under the tutelage of professors Dary John Mizelle and the inspiring mentor Joel Thome, of SUNY's Purchase College. The Aslanis are equally recognized for their lifelong commitment to philanthropy, volunteerism and altruism, as typified among others, by their endowed bequest of a middle school and high school for girls in Aslani's hometown, whose hundreds of graduates have now moved on to earn their college degrees.
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