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Iranian musician composing opera on Nezami for Germany

Source: Tehran Times

TEHRAN -- Iranian musician Nader Mashayekhi has been commissioned by the Berlin State Opera to compose an opera on Nezami Ganjavi (c. 1141-1209 CE), the greatest romantic epic poet in Persian literature who brought a colloquial and realistic style to the Persian epic.

Photo: Iranian musician Nader Mashayekhi in an undated photo
(photo by Mohammad Khodabakhsh, Mehr News Agency)

"At present, Iran has received the attention of the world, and there are groups that want to present Iranian culture," Mashayekhi, the former conductor of the Tehran Symphony Orchestra, told the Persian service of ISNA on Monday.

"Therefore, Germany has assigned me the task," he stated and added that a German orchestra is scheduled to perform the opera in March 2017.

Mashayekhi said that the characters of Nezami's poems come to life in the opera.

He described Nezami as one of those Persian poets who focused on woman characters. He also referred to Ferdowsi, the composer of the Shahnameh, as another Persian poet who has shown interest in woman characters.

"Ferdowsi saw women as heroes in his poetry, but women in Nezami's works neatly reflect various characters," Mashayekhi explained comparing the two poets.

A poem by Nezami Ganjavi: Khosrow Parviz discovers Shirin bathing in a pool
Created: Mid 16th century, Safavid dynasty)

Nezami's reputation rests on his Khamseh, which was inscribed on UNESCO's Memory of the World Register list in May 2011.

It is a pentalogy of poems written in Masnavi verse form (rhymed couplets) and totaling 30,000 couplets.

These five poems include the didactic work Makhzan ol-Asrar (The Treasury of Mysteries), three traditional love stories of Khosrow and Shirin, Leili and Majnun, and Haft Paykar, and the Eskandar-nameh, which records the adventures of Alexander the Great.



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