Compositions

Chamber Orchestra

Chamber Orchestra

  • Folk Songs: Set No. 10

    Soprano or Mezzo-Soprano Solo: 2(1d Picc, 1d AFl).1(d EH).2(1,2d BCl).1: 1.1.1.1: Timp.Perc(2).Pno.Hp: Str (9.8.6.4.4 or 1.1.1.1.1)

    1993
    15 min.
    • Watch "Song I"
      Watch "Song I"
    • Watch "Song II"
      Watch "Song II"
    • Watch "Song III"
      Watch "Song III"
    • Watch "Song IV"
      Watch "Song IV"
  • Folk Songs: Set No. 14

    Mezzo-Soprano or Soprano Solo: 1(d Picc).1(d EH).1(d BCl).1(d Cbsn): 2.1.1.1: Timp.Perc(2).Pno.Hp: Str (9.8.6.4.4 or 1.1.1.1.1)

    1998
    12 min.
    • Watch "Song I"
      Watch "Song I"
    • Watch "Song II"
      Watch "Song II"
    • Watch "Song III"
      Watch "Song III"
    • Watch "Song IV"
      Watch "Song IV"
    • Watch "Song V"
      Watch "Song V"
  • Persian Folk Songs: Set No. 7

    Soprano Solo: 1(d AFl, Picc).1(d EH).1(d BCl).1(d Cbsn): 1.1.1.1: Timp.Perc(2).Pno.Hp: Str (9.8.6.4.4 , 6.6.4.4.2, or 1.1.1.1.1)

    1986
    17 min.
    • Watch "Song I"
      Watch "Song I"
    • Watch "Song II"
      Watch "Song II"
    • Watch "Song III"
      Watch "Song III"
    • Watch "Song IV"
      Watch "Song IV"
    • Watch "Song V"
      Watch "Song V"
    • Watch "Song VI"
      Watch "Song VI"

Chamber Ensemble

Chamber Ensemble

  • Ashoob: Calligraphy No. 14 for Santoor and String Quartet

    Persian Santoor, String Quartet

    2014
    8 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
  • Ashoob: Calligraphy No. 14 for String Quartet

    String Quartet

    2014
    8 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
  • Calligraphies (Nos. 1-3) for String Quartet / Quintet

    String Quartet, Double Bass

    1999
    12 min.
    • Reza Vali: Three Calligraphies for String Quartet
      Reza Vali: Three Calligraphies for String Quartet
    • Calligraphy No 1 (Hazin)
      Calligraphy No 1 (Hazin)
    • Calligraphy No. II (Zand)
      Calligraphy No. II (Zand)
    • Calligraphy No. III (Aksak)
      Calligraphy No. III (Aksak)
  • Calligraphy No. 4

    Persian Santoor (hammered dulcimer), String Quartet

    2001
    7 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
  • Chant and Dance

    Flute(d Picc, Alto Flute), Clarinet(d BCl), Pno(d Clst), Perc(3)

    1990
    16 min.
    • Watch "Chant"
      Watch "Chant"
    • Watch "Dance"
      Watch "Dance"
  • Folk Songs Set No. 8

    Soprano or Mezzo-Soprano Solo: Flute(d Picc), Clarinet(d BCl), Perc(1), Harp, Piano, Viola, Cello, Double Bass

    1989
    15 min.
    • Watch "Song I"
      Watch "Song I"
    • Watch "Song II"
      Watch "Song II"
    • Watch "Song III"
      Watch "Song III"
    • Watch "Song IV"
      Watch "Song IV"
    • Watch "Song V"
      Watch "Song V"
    • Watch "Song VI"
      Watch "Song VI"
    • Watch "Song VII"
      Watch "Song VII"
  • Folk Songs: Set No. 11A

    4 Cellos

    1995
    8 min.
  • Folk Songs: Set No. 11B

    String Quartet

    1995
    8 min.
    • Watch Apollo Chamber Players perform "Folksong Set No. 11B for String Quartet"
      Watch Apollo Chamber Players perform "Folksong Set No. 11B for String Quartet"
    • Watch Carpe Diem String Quartet perform "Folksong Set No. 11B for String Quartet"
      Watch Carpe Diem String Quartet perform "Folksong Set No. 11B for String Quartet"
    • Watch Movement I
      Watch Movement I
    • Watch Movement II
      Watch Movement II
  • Folk Songs: Set No. 12A

    Mezzo soprano or soprano solo, string quartet (vl.1, vl.2, vla., vcl.), piano

    12 min.
    • Watch "Song I, In the Style of an Armenian Folk Song"
      Watch "Song I, In the Style of an Armenian Folk Song"
    • Watch "Song II, Rain"
      Watch "Song II, Rain"
    • Watch "Song III, Love Song "
      Watch "Song III, Love Song "
    • Watch "Song IV, Lament"
      Watch "Song IV, Lament"
    • Watch "Song V, Love Song"
      Watch "Song V, Love Song"
  • Folk Songs: Set No. 12B

    4 Cellos

    1996
    4 min.
  • Folk Songs: Set No. 13

    4 Cellos

    1996
    14 min.
  • Folk Songs: Set No. 15

    Flute(d AFl, Picc), Clarinet (d Eb Clar, Bass Clar), Percussion, Violin, Cello

    1999
    20 min.
    • Watch Movement I
      Watch Movement I
    • Watch Movement II
      Watch Movement II
    • Watch Movement III
      Watch Movement III
    • Watch Movement IV
      Watch Movement IV
    • Watch Movement V
      Watch Movement V
    • Watch Movement VI
      Watch Movement VI
    • Watch Movement VII
      Watch Movement VII
  • Gâtâr: Calligraphy No. 11 for String Quartet

    String Quartet

    2011
    12 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
  • Geryân: Calligraphy No. 12 for String Quartet

    String Quartet

    2012
    9 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
  • Kereshmeh: Calligraphy No. 8

    Piccolo, Flute, Oboe, English Horn, Bassoon, Contrabassoon, Percussion (3). (Performers divided into 3 independent groups.)

    2007
    5 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
  • Kismet: Calligraphy No. 7

    Flute Trio: Fl 1 dAFl, Picc; Fl 2 & 3 dAFl

    2007
    8 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
  • Love Songs

    Violin, Viola, Cello, Piano

    2003
    7 min.
    • Movement I
      Movement I
    • Movement II
      Movement II
    • Movement III
      Movement III
  • Nayshâborak (Calligraphy No. 6)

    String Quartet

    2006
    10 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
  • Ormavi, String Quartet No. 4

    String Quartet

    2017
    18 min.
    • Watch I. Hisar 1
      Watch I. Hisar 1
    • Watch II. Osool
      Watch II. Osool
    • Watch III. Hesâr
      Watch III. Hesâr
    • IV. Zirafkand 1
      IV. Zirafkand 1
    • V. Hisar 2
      V. Hisar 2
    • VI. Zirafkand 2
      VI. Zirafkand 2
    • VII. Rooh
      VII. Rooh
    • VIII. Hora
      VIII. Hora
  • Raak: Calligraphy No. 15

    String Quartet

    2015
    15 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
    • Listen to the Recording
      Listen to the Recording
  • Sornâ: Folk Songs Set No 17 for Solo Clarinet and 7 Players

    Solo Clarinet in Bb, Flute(dPicc, Afl), Clarinet(dEb Clar, Bcl), 2 Percussion, Piano(dChimes), Violin(dChimes), Cello(dChimes)

    2015
    12 min.
    • Movement I
      Movement I
    • Movement II
      Movement II
    • Movement III
      Movement III
    • Movement IV
      Movement IV
  • String Quartet No. 2

    String Quartet

    1991
    30 min.
    • Movement I
      Movement I
    • Movement II
      Movement II
    • Movement III
      Movement III
    • Movement IV
      Movement IV
  • String Quartet No. 3

    String Quartet

    2001
    21 min.
    • Movement I
      Movement I
    • Movement II
      Movement II
    • Movement III
      Movement III
  • The Night of Power

    2 Trumpet, Horn, Trombone, Tuba, Perc(3), Pno(d Clst), Violin, Cello,*Electric Instruments (1 player): MIDI keyboard-controller, Yamaha tx 816 Synth, Roland d-550 Synth, Lexicon PCM effect processor, and MID

    1990
    18 min.
  • Zand: Calligraphy no. 2 for String Quartet

    String Quartet

    1999
    5 min.
    • Calligraphies: II. Calligraphy No. 2 (Zand)
      Calligraphies: II. Calligraphy No. 2 (Zand)
  • Zand: Calligraphy No. 2, Version for Flute and String Trio

    flute, violin, viola, cello

    1999
    5 min.
  • Zand: Calligraphy No. 2, Version for Ney and String Trio

    ney, violin, viola, cello

    1999
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
  • Zand: Calligraphy No. 2, Version for Oud and String Trio

    oud, violin, viola, cello

    1999
    5 min.

Chorus

Chorus

  • Four Persian Folk Songs: Set No. 5

    Soprano Solo: Children's Chorus or SSA Chorus, Harp, Piano, Perc(2)

    1984
    10 min.
  • Persian Folklore

    SATB Chorus

    1987
    5 min.

Solo / Duo

Solo / Duo

  • Blue Johannes

    Piano Solo

    2012
    7 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
  • Calligraphy No. 5, version for Solo Viola

    Viola Solo

    2003
    6 min.
  • Calligraphy No. 5, version for Solo Violin

    Violin Solo

    2003
    6 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
  • Der Eisberg

    Solo Piano

    1983
    8 min.
  • Folk Songs: Set No. 12C

    Cello, Piano

    1996
    5 min.
  • Folk Songs: Set No. 12D

    Horn, Piano

    2002
    7 min.
  • Folk Songs: Set No. 9 for Flute and Cello

    Flute (d Piccolo, Alto Flute, Bass Flute, Tambourine), Cello (d 6 crystal glasses, Tom-Tom)

    1991
    18 min.
    • Watch Movement I
      Watch Movement I
    • Watch Movement II
      Watch Movement II
    • Watch Movement III
      Watch Movement III
    • Watch Movement IV
      Watch Movement IV
    • Watch Movement V
      Watch Movement V
    • Watch Movement VI
      Watch Movement VI
    • Watch Movement VII
      Watch Movement VII
    • Watch Movement VIII
      Watch Movement VIII
  • Four Persian Folk Songs: Set No. 1

    Soprano or Mezzo-Soprano, Piano

    1979
    12 min.
  • Gestures

    Solo Piano

    1980
    10 min.
  • Gozaar: Calligraphy no. 5 for Guitar

    Guitar Solo

    2003
    6 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
  • Khojasteh: Calligraphy No. 10 for Violin and Cello

    Violin, Cello

    2010
    9 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
  • Kismet: Calligraphy No. 7, Version for Solo Flute and Electronics

    Solo Flute, Pre-recorded multiple flute tracks

    2007
    9 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
  • Kord for Solo Cello: Calligraphy No. 9

    Cello Solo

    2008
    5 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
    • Watch Evan Kahn perform "Kord for Solo Cello: Calligraphy No. 9"
      Watch Evan Kahn perform "Kord for Solo Cello: Calligraphy No. 9"
    • Watch Kristen Yeon-Ji Yun perform  "Kord for Solo Cello: Calligraphy No. 9"
      Watch Kristen Yeon-Ji Yun perform "Kord for Solo Cello: Calligraphy No. 9"
  • Love Drunk

    Violin, Piano

    2014
    7 min.
    • Watch I. Longing
      Watch I. Longing
    • Watch II. In Memory of a Lost Beloved
      Watch II. In Memory of a Lost Beloved
    • Watch III. The Girl from Shiraz
      Watch III. The Girl from Shiraz
    • Watch IV. Love Drunk
      Watch IV. Love Drunk
  • Nine Persian Folk Songs: Set No. 2

    Soprano, Piano

    1981
    12 min.
  • Persian Folk Songs: Set No. 16C

    Cello, Piano

    2016
    20 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
  • Persian Suite: Folk Songs: Set No. 12E

    Flute, Piano

    2002
    7 min.
    • Watch Julieta Blanco & Vahan Sargsyan perform "Persian Suite: Folk Songs: Set No. 12E"
      Watch Julieta Blanco & Vahan Sargsyan perform "Persian Suite: Folk Songs: Set No. 12E"
  • Reminiscences

    Solo Piano

    1986
    10 min.
  • Song for Solo Flute

    Flute Solo

    1987
    7 min.
    • Watch Laura Chislett perform "Song for Solo Flute"
      Watch Laura Chislett perform "Song for Solo Flute"
  • Three Romantic Songs

    Violin, Piano

    2011
    7 min.
    • Watch Roy Sonne and Yeeha Chiu perform "Three Romantic Songs"
      Watch Roy Sonne and Yeeha Chiu perform "Three Romantic Songs"
    • Watch I. Moderato
      Watch I. Moderato
    • Watch II. Adagio – Molto allegro
      Watch II. Adagio – Molto allegro
    • Watch III. Tango Johannes
      Watch III. Tango Johannes
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video

Orchestra

Orchestra

  • Concerto for Flute and Orchestra

    Flute Solo: 1(d AFl, Picc).1(d EH).1(d A Clarinet, Bass Clar).0: 2.1.1.1: Timp.Perc(4).Hp: Str (6.6.4.4.2 or 6.4.4.3.2)

    1997
    20 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
  • Deylámân

    4(2d AFl, 1d Bass Flute, 2d Picc).3(1d EH).4(1d Eb Clar, 2d BCl).3(1d Cbsn): 4.3.3.1: Timp.Perc(6).Pno(d Clst).Harp.Persian Ney.Persian Oud: Str. (Ney may be replaced by a Flute; 6 string Lute may substitute for Oud)

    1995
    20 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
  • Four Movements for String Quartet and Orchestra

    String Quartet Soli and String Orchestra

    1993
    30 min.
    • Watch Movement I
      Watch Movement I
    • Watch Movement II
      Watch Movement II
    • Watch Movement III
      Watch Movement III
    • Watch Movement IV
      Watch Movement IV
  • Funebre

    Violin Solo: String Orchestra (8.8.6.4.4 or 6.6.4.4.2)

    1992
    9 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
  • Isfahan (Calligraphy No. 16)

    2(2dPicc).2(2dEh).2(2dBcl).2(2dCbsn):2.2.2.1:Timp.Perc(2).Pno..Hp.Str.

    Commissioned by the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra

    2017
    22 min.
  • Opening Music

    2(1d Picc).2(1d EH).2.2: 5.3.3.1: Timp.Perc(3): Str

    1988
    8 min.
  • Ravan

    2(1dPicc, 2dAFl).2(2dEH).2(2dBCl).1+Cbsn: 2.1.1.1: Timp.Perc(2).Pno.Hp: Str

    Commissioned by the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra

    2013
    5 min.
  • Segâh: Double Concerto for Persian Ney, Kamanche, and Orchestra

    Ney (Persian Flute) and Kamanche (Persian/ Turkish spike fiddle) soli: 2(2dPicc).1dEH.2(1dCl in A, 2dBcl).2(2dCbsn): 1.2.2.1: Timp(dPersian Frame Drum).Perc(2).Pno.Hp: Str

    2010
    29 min.
    • Watch the Segâh Festival Ensemble perform "Segah: Double Concerto for Persian Ney, Kamanche, and Orchestra"
      Watch the Segâh Festival Ensemble perform "Segah: Double Concerto for Persian Ney, Kamanche, and Orchestra"
  • The Ancient Call: Calligraphy No. 13

    Trumpet Solo: 2(1dAfl, 2dPicc).1(dEh).2(2dBcl).2(2dCbsn):2.2.2.1: 3 Perc(1dTimp).Pno.Hp: Str

    2014
    14 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
  • The Being of Love: Folk Songs Set No. 16

    Soprano or Mezzo Voice: 2(2d AFl, Picc).2(2dEH).2(1dCl in A, 2dBCl).2(2dCbsn): 2.2.2.1: Timp.Perc(4).Pno (d Clst).Hp: Str(10.9.8.7.6)

    Commissioned by the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra

    2005
    27 min.
  • The Darkness of Fury

    2(2dPicc).2(1dEH).2.2: 4(+opt Hn5).3.3.1: Timp.Perc(2): Str

    2012
    5 min.
    • Watch Kharkiv Philharmonic Orchestra perform "The Darkness of Fury"
      Watch Kharkiv Philharmonic Orchestra perform "The Darkness of Fury"
    • Watch Carnegie Mellon Philharmonic perform "The Darkness of Fury"
      Watch Carnegie Mellon Philharmonic perform "The Darkness of Fury"
  • The Dervish and the Magus

    Cello Solo: 2(1d Picc, 1d AFl).1(d EH).2(2d Eb Clar, 1d BCl).1(d Cbsn): 1.1.2.1: Timp.Perc(2).Pno(d Clst).Harp(d low chimes): Str 6.2.2.2.2

    1994
    26 min.
  • Toward That Endless Plain: Concerto for Persian Ney and Orchestra

    Persian Ney (Flute) Solo: 2(dPicc).2(2dEH).2(1dEbCl, 2dBCl).2(2dCbsn): 2.2.2.1: Perc(3).Pno(dShaker).Hp(dSiren, Shakers): Str(last 2 Vn1 stands dClaves, Guiro; last Vn2 stand dTemple Blocks)

    2003
    19 min.
    • Watch Movement I
      Watch Movement I
    • Watch Movement II
      Watch Movement II
    • Watch Movement III
      Watch Movement III

Chamber Orchestra

  • Folk Songs: Set No. 10

    Soprano or Mezzo-Soprano Solo: 2(1d Picc, 1d AFl).1(d EH).2(1,2d BCl).1: 1.1.1.1: Timp.Perc(2).Pno.Hp: Str (9.8.6.4.4 or 1.1.1.1.1)

    1993
    15 min.
    • Watch "Song I"
      Watch "Song I"
    • Watch "Song II"
      Watch "Song II"
    • Watch "Song III"
      Watch "Song III"
    • Watch "Song IV"
      Watch "Song IV"
  • Folk Songs: Set No. 14

    Mezzo-Soprano or Soprano Solo: 1(d Picc).1(d EH).1(d BCl).1(d Cbsn): 2.1.1.1: Timp.Perc(2).Pno.Hp: Str (9.8.6.4.4 or 1.1.1.1.1)

    1998
    12 min.
    • Watch "Song I"
      Watch "Song I"
    • Watch "Song II"
      Watch "Song II"
    • Watch "Song III"
      Watch "Song III"
    • Watch "Song IV"
      Watch "Song IV"
    • Watch "Song V"
      Watch "Song V"
  • Persian Folk Songs: Set No. 7

    Soprano Solo: 1(d AFl, Picc).1(d EH).1(d BCl).1(d Cbsn): 1.1.1.1: Timp.Perc(2).Pno.Hp: Str (9.8.6.4.4 , 6.6.4.4.2, or 1.1.1.1.1)

    1986
    17 min.
    • Watch "Song I"
      Watch "Song I"
    • Watch "Song II"
      Watch "Song II"
    • Watch "Song III"
      Watch "Song III"
    • Watch "Song IV"
      Watch "Song IV"
    • Watch "Song V"
      Watch "Song V"
    • Watch "Song VI"
      Watch "Song VI"

Chamber Ensemble

  • Ashoob: Calligraphy No. 14 for Santoor and String Quartet

    Persian Santoor, String Quartet

    2014
    8 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
  • Ashoob: Calligraphy No. 14 for String Quartet

    String Quartet

    2014
    8 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
  • Calligraphies (Nos. 1-3) for String Quartet / Quintet

    String Quartet, Double Bass

    1999
    12 min.
    • Reza Vali: Three Calligraphies for String Quartet
      Reza Vali: Three Calligraphies for String Quartet
    • Calligraphy No 1 (Hazin)
      Calligraphy No 1 (Hazin)
    • Calligraphy No. II (Zand)
      Calligraphy No. II (Zand)
    • Calligraphy No. III (Aksak)
      Calligraphy No. III (Aksak)
  • Calligraphy No. 4

    Persian Santoor (hammered dulcimer), String Quartet

    2001
    7 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
  • Chant and Dance

    Flute(d Picc, Alto Flute), Clarinet(d BCl), Pno(d Clst), Perc(3)

    1990
    16 min.
    • Watch "Chant"
      Watch "Chant"
    • Watch "Dance"
      Watch "Dance"
  • Folk Songs Set No. 8

    Soprano or Mezzo-Soprano Solo: Flute(d Picc), Clarinet(d BCl), Perc(1), Harp, Piano, Viola, Cello, Double Bass

    1989
    15 min.
    • Watch "Song I"
      Watch "Song I"
    • Watch "Song II"
      Watch "Song II"
    • Watch "Song III"
      Watch "Song III"
    • Watch "Song IV"
      Watch "Song IV"
    • Watch "Song V"
      Watch "Song V"
    • Watch "Song VI"
      Watch "Song VI"
    • Watch "Song VII"
      Watch "Song VII"
  • Folk Songs: Set No. 11A

    4 Cellos

    1995
    8 min.
  • Folk Songs: Set No. 11B

    String Quartet

    1995
    8 min.
    • Watch Apollo Chamber Players perform "Folksong Set No. 11B for String Quartet"
      Watch Apollo Chamber Players perform "Folksong Set No. 11B for String Quartet"
    • Watch Carpe Diem String Quartet perform "Folksong Set No. 11B for String Quartet"
      Watch Carpe Diem String Quartet perform "Folksong Set No. 11B for String Quartet"
    • Watch Movement I
      Watch Movement I
    • Watch Movement II
      Watch Movement II
  • Folk Songs: Set No. 12A

    Mezzo soprano or soprano solo, string quartet (vl.1, vl.2, vla., vcl.), piano

    12 min.
    • Watch "Song I, In the Style of an Armenian Folk Song"
      Watch "Song I, In the Style of an Armenian Folk Song"
    • Watch "Song II, Rain"
      Watch "Song II, Rain"
    • Watch "Song III, Love Song "
      Watch "Song III, Love Song "
    • Watch "Song IV, Lament"
      Watch "Song IV, Lament"
    • Watch "Song V, Love Song"
      Watch "Song V, Love Song"
  • Folk Songs: Set No. 12B

    4 Cellos

    1996
    4 min.
  • Folk Songs: Set No. 13

    4 Cellos

    1996
    14 min.
  • Folk Songs: Set No. 15

    Flute(d AFl, Picc), Clarinet (d Eb Clar, Bass Clar), Percussion, Violin, Cello

    1999
    20 min.
    • Watch Movement I
      Watch Movement I
    • Watch Movement II
      Watch Movement II
    • Watch Movement III
      Watch Movement III
    • Watch Movement IV
      Watch Movement IV
    • Watch Movement V
      Watch Movement V
    • Watch Movement VI
      Watch Movement VI
    • Watch Movement VII
      Watch Movement VII
  • Gâtâr: Calligraphy No. 11 for String Quartet

    String Quartet

    2011
    12 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
  • Geryân: Calligraphy No. 12 for String Quartet

    String Quartet

    2012
    9 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
  • Kereshmeh: Calligraphy No. 8

    Piccolo, Flute, Oboe, English Horn, Bassoon, Contrabassoon, Percussion (3). (Performers divided into 3 independent groups.)

    2007
    5 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
  • Kismet: Calligraphy No. 7

    Flute Trio: Fl 1 dAFl, Picc; Fl 2 & 3 dAFl

    2007
    8 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
  • Love Songs

    Violin, Viola, Cello, Piano

    2003
    7 min.
    • Movement I
      Movement I
    • Movement II
      Movement II
    • Movement III
      Movement III
  • Nayshâborak (Calligraphy No. 6)

    String Quartet

    2006
    10 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
  • Ormavi, String Quartet No. 4

    String Quartet

    2017
    18 min.
    • Watch I. Hisar 1
      Watch I. Hisar 1
    • Watch II. Osool
      Watch II. Osool
    • Watch III. Hesâr
      Watch III. Hesâr
    • IV. Zirafkand 1
      IV. Zirafkand 1
    • V. Hisar 2
      V. Hisar 2
    • VI. Zirafkand 2
      VI. Zirafkand 2
    • VII. Rooh
      VII. Rooh
    • VIII. Hora
      VIII. Hora
  • Raak: Calligraphy No. 15

    String Quartet

    2015
    15 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
    • Listen to the Recording
      Listen to the Recording
  • Sornâ: Folk Songs Set No 17 for Solo Clarinet and 7 Players

    Solo Clarinet in Bb, Flute(dPicc, Afl), Clarinet(dEb Clar, Bcl), 2 Percussion, Piano(dChimes), Violin(dChimes), Cello(dChimes)

    2015
    12 min.
    • Movement I
      Movement I
    • Movement II
      Movement II
    • Movement III
      Movement III
    • Movement IV
      Movement IV
  • String Quartet No. 2

    String Quartet

    1991
    30 min.
    • Movement I
      Movement I
    • Movement II
      Movement II
    • Movement III
      Movement III
    • Movement IV
      Movement IV
  • String Quartet No. 3

    String Quartet

    2001
    21 min.
    • Movement I
      Movement I
    • Movement II
      Movement II
    • Movement III
      Movement III
  • The Night of Power

    2 Trumpet, Horn, Trombone, Tuba, Perc(3), Pno(d Clst), Violin, Cello,*Electric Instruments (1 player): MIDI keyboard-controller, Yamaha tx 816 Synth, Roland d-550 Synth, Lexicon PCM effect processor, and MID

    1990
    18 min.
  • Zand: Calligraphy no. 2 for String Quartet

    String Quartet

    1999
    5 min.
    • Calligraphies: II. Calligraphy No. 2 (Zand)
      Calligraphies: II. Calligraphy No. 2 (Zand)
  • Zand: Calligraphy No. 2, Version for Flute and String Trio

    flute, violin, viola, cello

    1999
    5 min.
  • Zand: Calligraphy No. 2, Version for Ney and String Trio

    ney, violin, viola, cello

    1999
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
  • Zand: Calligraphy No. 2, Version for Oud and String Trio

    oud, violin, viola, cello

    1999
    5 min.

Chorus

  • Four Persian Folk Songs: Set No. 5

    Soprano Solo: Children's Chorus or SSA Chorus, Harp, Piano, Perc(2)

    1984
    10 min.
  • Persian Folklore

    SATB Chorus

    1987
    5 min.

Solo / Duo

  • Blue Johannes

    Piano Solo

    2012
    7 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
  • Calligraphy No. 5, version for Solo Viola

    Viola Solo

    2003
    6 min.
  • Calligraphy No. 5, version for Solo Violin

    Violin Solo

    2003
    6 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
  • Der Eisberg

    Solo Piano

    1983
    8 min.
  • Folk Songs: Set No. 12C

    Cello, Piano

    1996
    5 min.
  • Folk Songs: Set No. 12D

    Horn, Piano

    2002
    7 min.
  • Folk Songs: Set No. 9 for Flute and Cello

    Flute (d Piccolo, Alto Flute, Bass Flute, Tambourine), Cello (d 6 crystal glasses, Tom-Tom)

    1991
    18 min.
    • Watch Movement I
      Watch Movement I
    • Watch Movement II
      Watch Movement II
    • Watch Movement III
      Watch Movement III
    • Watch Movement IV
      Watch Movement IV
    • Watch Movement V
      Watch Movement V
    • Watch Movement VI
      Watch Movement VI
    • Watch Movement VII
      Watch Movement VII
    • Watch Movement VIII
      Watch Movement VIII
  • Four Persian Folk Songs: Set No. 1

    Soprano or Mezzo-Soprano, Piano

    1979
    12 min.
  • Gestures

    Solo Piano

    1980
    10 min.
  • Gozaar: Calligraphy no. 5 for Guitar

    Guitar Solo

    2003
    6 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
  • Khojasteh: Calligraphy No. 10 for Violin and Cello

    Violin, Cello

    2010
    9 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
  • Kismet: Calligraphy No. 7, Version for Solo Flute and Electronics

    Solo Flute, Pre-recorded multiple flute tracks

    2007
    9 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
  • Kord for Solo Cello: Calligraphy No. 9

    Cello Solo

    2008
    5 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
    • Watch Evan Kahn perform "Kord for Solo Cello: Calligraphy No. 9"
      Watch Evan Kahn perform "Kord for Solo Cello: Calligraphy No. 9"
    • Watch Kristen Yeon-Ji Yun perform  "Kord for Solo Cello: Calligraphy No. 9"
      Watch Kristen Yeon-Ji Yun perform "Kord for Solo Cello: Calligraphy No. 9"
  • Love Drunk

    Violin, Piano

    2014
    7 min.
    • Watch I. Longing
      Watch I. Longing
    • Watch II. In Memory of a Lost Beloved
      Watch II. In Memory of a Lost Beloved
    • Watch III. The Girl from Shiraz
      Watch III. The Girl from Shiraz
    • Watch IV. Love Drunk
      Watch IV. Love Drunk
  • Nine Persian Folk Songs: Set No. 2

    Soprano, Piano

    1981
    12 min.
  • Persian Folk Songs: Set No. 16C

    Cello, Piano

    2016
    20 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
  • Persian Suite: Folk Songs: Set No. 12E

    Flute, Piano

    2002
    7 min.
    • Watch Julieta Blanco & Vahan Sargsyan perform "Persian Suite: Folk Songs: Set No. 12E"
      Watch Julieta Blanco & Vahan Sargsyan perform "Persian Suite: Folk Songs: Set No. 12E"
  • Reminiscences

    Solo Piano

    1986
    10 min.
  • Song for Solo Flute

    Flute Solo

    1987
    7 min.
    • Watch Laura Chislett perform "Song for Solo Flute"
      Watch Laura Chislett perform "Song for Solo Flute"
  • Three Romantic Songs

    Violin, Piano

    2011
    7 min.
    • Watch Roy Sonne and Yeeha Chiu perform "Three Romantic Songs"
      Watch Roy Sonne and Yeeha Chiu perform "Three Romantic Songs"
    • Watch I. Moderato
      Watch I. Moderato
    • Watch II. Adagio – Molto allegro
      Watch II. Adagio – Molto allegro
    • Watch III. Tango Johannes
      Watch III. Tango Johannes
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video

Orchestra

  • Concerto for Flute and Orchestra

    Flute Solo: 1(d AFl, Picc).1(d EH).1(d A Clarinet, Bass Clar).0: 2.1.1.1: Timp.Perc(4).Hp: Str (6.6.4.4.2 or 6.4.4.3.2)

    1997
    20 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
  • Deylámân

    4(2d AFl, 1d Bass Flute, 2d Picc).3(1d EH).4(1d Eb Clar, 2d BCl).3(1d Cbsn): 4.3.3.1: Timp.Perc(6).Pno(d Clst).Harp.Persian Ney.Persian Oud: Str. (Ney may be replaced by a Flute; 6 string Lute may substitute for Oud)

    1995
    20 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
  • Four Movements for String Quartet and Orchestra

    String Quartet Soli and String Orchestra

    1993
    30 min.
    • Watch Movement I
      Watch Movement I
    • Watch Movement II
      Watch Movement II
    • Watch Movement III
      Watch Movement III
    • Watch Movement IV
      Watch Movement IV
  • Funebre

    Violin Solo: String Orchestra (8.8.6.4.4 or 6.6.4.4.2)

    1992
    9 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
  • Isfahan (Calligraphy No. 16)

    2(2dPicc).2(2dEh).2(2dBcl).2(2dCbsn):2.2.2.1:Timp.Perc(2).Pno..Hp.Str.

    Commissioned by the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra

    2017
    22 min.
  • Opening Music

    2(1d Picc).2(1d EH).2.2: 5.3.3.1: Timp.Perc(3): Str

    1988
    8 min.
  • Ravan

    2(1dPicc, 2dAFl).2(2dEH).2(2dBCl).1+Cbsn: 2.1.1.1: Timp.Perc(2).Pno.Hp: Str

    Commissioned by the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra

    2013
    5 min.
  • Segâh: Double Concerto for Persian Ney, Kamanche, and Orchestra

    Ney (Persian Flute) and Kamanche (Persian/ Turkish spike fiddle) soli: 2(2dPicc).1dEH.2(1dCl in A, 2dBcl).2(2dCbsn): 1.2.2.1: Timp(dPersian Frame Drum).Perc(2).Pno.Hp: Str

    2010
    29 min.
    • Watch the Segâh Festival Ensemble perform "Segah: Double Concerto for Persian Ney, Kamanche, and Orchestra"
      Watch the Segâh Festival Ensemble perform "Segah: Double Concerto for Persian Ney, Kamanche, and Orchestra"
  • The Ancient Call: Calligraphy No. 13

    Trumpet Solo: 2(1dAfl, 2dPicc).1(dEh).2(2dBcl).2(2dCbsn):2.2.2.1: 3 Perc(1dTimp).Pno.Hp: Str

    2014
    14 min.
    • Watch Video
      Watch Video
  • The Being of Love: Folk Songs Set No. 16

    Soprano or Mezzo Voice: 2(2d AFl, Picc).2(2dEH).2(1dCl in A, 2dBCl).2(2dCbsn): 2.2.2.1: Timp.Perc(4).Pno (d Clst).Hp: Str(10.9.8.7.6)

    Commissioned by the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra

    2005
    27 min.
  • The Darkness of Fury

    2(2dPicc).2(1dEH).2.2: 4(+opt Hn5).3.3.1: Timp.Perc(2): Str

    2012
    5 min.
    • Watch Kharkiv Philharmonic Orchestra perform "The Darkness of Fury"
      Watch Kharkiv Philharmonic Orchestra perform "The Darkness of Fury"
    • Watch Carnegie Mellon Philharmonic perform "The Darkness of Fury"
      Watch Carnegie Mellon Philharmonic perform "The Darkness of Fury"
  • The Dervish and the Magus

    Cello Solo: 2(1d Picc, 1d AFl).1(d EH).2(2d Eb Clar, 1d BCl).1(d Cbsn): 1.1.2.1: Timp.Perc(2).Pno(d Clst).Harp(d low chimes): Str 6.2.2.2.2

    1994
    26 min.
  • Toward That Endless Plain: Concerto for Persian Ney and Orchestra

    Persian Ney (Flute) Solo: 2(dPicc).2(2dEH).2(1dEbCl, 2dBCl).2(2dCbsn): 2.2.2.1: Perc(3).Pno(dShaker).Hp(dSiren, Shakers): Str(last 2 Vn1 stands dClaves, Guiro; last Vn2 stand dTemple Blocks)

    2003
    19 min.
    • Watch Movement I
      Watch Movement I
    • Watch Movement II
      Watch Movement II
    • Watch Movement III
      Watch Movement III

Reza Vali’s music draws – interestingly and attractively – on two musical traditions.

Reza VALI (b. 1952) Longing
Carpe Diem String Quartet; Charles Wetherbee (violin); David Korevaar (piano); Dariush Saghafi (santour)
MSR CLASSICS MS1738 [71:43]

Reza Vali was born in Iran, in Ghazvin (Qazvin in some systems of transliteration), a city which was actually the capital of the country from 1555 to 1598; a major centre of the textile trade, as well as a home to important traditional crafts such as calligraphy. Indeed, one of the most significant figures in the history of Persian calligraphy (an important art form in Iran) – Mir Emad Hassani (1554-1615) lived and worked in the city. In more recent times the important artist Shirin Neshat grew up in Qazvin, leaving Iran in 1975 and now based in New York. Qazvin is now a busy modern city, with its own airport and several shopping malls, as well as historic mosques. Vali lived in Qazvin until he moved to study at the Music Conservatory in Teheran. Further studies followed at the Academy of Music in Vienna and the University of Pittsburgh. Since 1985 he has taught at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh.

Vali’s work as a composer is indebted both to his Persian musical heritage and to the traditions of Western classical music. The result of the symbiotic relationship between these two traditions is a distinctive body of music. Vali’s earlier work seems largely to have been composed within Western frameworks, but at the beginning of the present century he began to use the Iranian dastgah/maqhâm system increasingly. These terms refer to the system of modal scales in Iranian music – roughly equivalent to the ragas of Indian music. In doing so, however, Vali has not abandoned Western conventions entirely: so, for example, Three Romantic Songs which open this CD is, in the words of the booklet note by Christian Kriegeskotte, a “homage … to Brahms and is a stylistic tribute to the iconic German composer”. Elsewhere on the disc, titles such as ‘Ashoob, ‘Raak’ and ‘Ormavi’ suggest the use of a rather different tradition (I will say more of these titles later). These three brief ‘Romantic Songs’ (tracks 1-3) are very much in the Germanic tradition of the Lieder Ohne Werte; one might, I suppose, think here of the violinist taking the role of the vocalist and the piano that of the accompanist. The first two of the ‘Romantic Songs’ are identified simply as ‘Moderato’ and ‘Adagio – Molto allegro’. The third, by way of contrast has a different kind of title – being called ‘Tango Johannes’. Here, obviously enough, Vali has moved beyond stylistic ‘imitation’ (however ‘free’) of Brahms. The tango was, of course, unknown to Brahms and it seems unlikely that he would have been attracted to it if he had known it. It is hard to imagine his ‘exoticism’ going beyond Hungarian dances. There is, indeed, a degree of mischievous humour in Vali’s music (and title) here. Kriegeskotte tells the reader that the composer calls the piece a “limping tango” and suggests that we “imagine Brahms trying to dance the tango with Clara Schumann

We are immediately plunged into a very different world with the first (of two) versions of Âshoob included on the CD. In ordinary usage one meaning of the title-word is ‘crowded’, according to my Iranian wife. Technically speaking, Vali makes use in Âshoob of one of the common styles of Persian music called ‘Reng’ which is usually played fast (hence Vali’s tempo direction ‘molto allegro’) in 6/8 time and is most often associated with dancing. Already the simultaneous presence of an Iranian title and a Western tempo direction suggests that the composer is concerned with some sort of synthesis or reconciliation of the two traditions. This possibility is confirmed when one sees that the work is written for a string quartet (one of the most highly regarded kinds of ensemble in Western classical music) and the traditional Iranian instrument the santour – a kind of hammered dulcimer, played with two light wooden hammers. The best instruments have nine sets of quadruple bronze strings (providing the instrument’s lower register) and a further nine sets of quadruple steel strings (providing the higher register). The Carpe Diem Quartet, founded in 2005, is a particularly adventurous ensemble, playing as it does not only the classical repertoire from Haydn to Taneyev, but also composers such as Golijov and having collaborated at various times with a number of jazz musicians and figures like Yihan Chan (who plays the Chinese pipa) and Irish flautist Shannon Heaton. This Quartet is not remotely daunted by a piece composed along non-western lines. Indeed, they have made earlier recordings of Vali’s ‘Iranian’ music. 2015 saw the issue of a double CD-set by Albany records (TROY 1603/4) of part of what Vali calls his Book of Calligraphy, (perhaps chosen because of calligraphy’s important place in the artistic tradition of Vali’s birthplace) under which title he groups his chamber music compositions based on the Iranian musical system. Those 2015 CDs contained recordings of the first 12 pieces from Vali’s series of such compositions. Here the Quartet brings its skills and its experience with Vali’s music to the recording of Nos. 14 (Âshoob) and 15 (Raak). In this first version of Âshoob the interplay between the string quartet and the santour, played by Dariush Saghafi, results in some very beautiful and unique sonorities – unlike anything I have heard before. Only a little over six minutes long Âshoob speaks powerfully – such ‘unifying’ music written by an expatriate Iranian composer living and working in the USA inevitably has a resonance beyond the purely musical. I am reminded of Lewis Hyde’s concept of certain works of art as “gifts to the world” (Lewis Hyde, The Gift, 1999). Vali’s music is certainly such a gift.

‘Raak’ was composed for the quintessentially western ensemble of the string quartet, but it, too, is written within the Iranian musical system. ‘Raak’ is the name of a particular Iranian dastgâh. The name is surely derived, like the word raga used in Indian music theory, from a common Sanskrit source meaning ‘colour’ or, ‘the act of dyeing’. On YouTube there is a video of this same performance, with an introduction by the composer. As Reza Vali says on that video, the Carpe Diem Quartet execute the piece superbly, not least its abundance of quarter tones – it “swims in quarter tones” says Vali. It is an urgent piece of music, compelling and vivid, full of distinctive ‘colours’ (I use the word in the light of the etymology above). Anyone whose taste in string quartets embraces some of the works played by, say, the Kronos Quartet, should find this rewarding and not especially challenging. The work was commissioned by the Carpe Diem Quartet, who gave the premier at Carnegie Hall in January 2017.

The Carpe Diem Quartet, without Dariush Saghafi, play two further pieces on the album. There is the second version of Âshoob for string quartet alone (my wife tells me that another meaning of the title is as a word to describe something as being made of a mixture of too many things). If Vali had that meaning in mind when he initially wrote the piece for santour and strung quartet, he was surely being ironic. But he was generous enough to produce a second version for string quartet alone, for those who found the instrumental ‘mix’ of the first version too rich a mixture; my own preference is for the original version with santour. The other work is Ormavi, the title of which refers to Safialdin Ormavi (1216-1294), sometimes referred to as Safi al-Din al-Urmawi al-Baghdadi, who was a famous musician and theorist of music. For historical reasons his writings were in Arabic rather than Farsi, though he seems to have been born in Persia. Ormavi is in eight short movements – I believe that their titles are all the names of particular modes in Iranian traditional music – some of them certainly are and they are presumably ones discussed by Ormavi. All are interesting, my own favourite being the seventh, ‘Rooh’ (the title might be translated as ‘soul’ or ‘spirit), which is played pizzicato throughout (it is only just over one and a half minute long).

The four folksongs grouped under the title Love Drunk, for violin and piano, were commissioned by the violinist Thomas Jones, Australian-born but now living in the USA. The title should alert us to a particular strand of imagery central to the tradition of Classical Persian poetry – in which the experience of love, especially the ecstasy of love (whether of a human individual or of God) is seen as a form of intoxication. To quote just one line from the greatest of Persian poets Hafiz (c.1316-1389), as translated by Gertrude Bell (Poems from the Divan of Hafiz, 1897): “Wine-drunk, love-drunk, we inherited Paradise”. As is the case with most worthwhile poetry, images and symbols in this tradition have more than one meaning. The object of love may (without the text being specific or unambiguous) be either human or divine. The wine may be a good red from Shiraz or the ‘wine’ of the holy spirit. In the same way, though Vali tells us that in writing ‘Longing’ he had in mind the longing of a grieving lover for a deceased beloved, we might readily hear the music as the composer’s longing for a lost Iran. Vali describes ‘In Memory of a Lost Beloved’ as “a reflection upon the grief of separation” and tells us that in ‘The Girl from Shiraz’ “the sensual and the spiritual aspects of love intersect”. Vali says of the closing piece, ‘Love Drunk’ that it “describes the intoxicating joy felt when lovers meet”. We may choose to understand this lovely music in such terms or we may choose, since these ‘subjects’ are exemplars of archetypal emotional states, to hear in Love Drunk reflections of religious love or, indeed, of many other kinds of love. Vali universalises his subjects by, for example, alluding to ‘Silent Night’, Tristan and Isolde and the Quartet for the End of Time in ‘The Girl from Shiraz’. However one chooses to interpret them these are pieces with a considerable emotional impact.

Those at all adventurous in their listening should try this CD – no great courage is needed for the experiment. This is music which will give pleasure and provoke thought.
 

Musicweb International, Glyn Pursglove