Beyond Solitude Program Notes

Music Title:
Beyond Solitude

Adelphi University
Main Concert Hall

March 5, 2010

   6:30 PM
   7:30 PM

  • Composer: Gregory H. Aslani
  • Persian Classical Arrangements: Homayoon Beigi    
  • Poetry: Davood Rahni and Saadi
  • Style: Fusion of Comtemporary Music and Persian Classical Music
  • Performers:
    Noavaran Ensemble:

    Contemporary Style Musicians:
  • Persian Classical Modes: Avaz-e Dashti, Dastgah-e Shur, and Dastgah-e Chahargah
  • Program Notes:

    Beyond Solitude is a fusion of contemporary (tonal/atonal) sounds with a specific style of microtonal Persian Classical Music. It employs two groups of musicians, a Contemporary Trio and a Persian Classical Quartet who begin a two way communication.

    The first movement of the piece, although written in contemporary spirit, has been greatly influenced by Persian classical melodies. It symbolizes the start of a dialog in the contemporary musical language with a Persian attitude to speak to the Persian Quartet. In response, the Quartet will debut its 24-division well-tempered interpretation of the Deilaman Gousheh of the Persian Classical Avaz of Dashti. This is followed by a dialog back and forth in the two dialects trying to communicate with slight variations in style. The Trio takes note from the rhythmic piece portrayed by the Quartet in the mother Dastgah of Shur to transit, in form, into tonality which is more compatible with the Dastgah of Chahargah. This time, when the Quartet responds with its interpretation of the opening of Chahargah (Daramad), the Trio attempts to express itself with its gained experience of the dialog, only to cut short at times to listen and gain more insight.

    By the end of the piece, the comfort level increases to a level of confidence that there is no hindrance in speaking each side's dialect. In fact the conclusion proves that the two styles, with a slight flexibility, can coexist in harmony and provide a positive level of dialog without having to set aside their respective originality.

  • Synopsis (by Davood Rahni):

    Inspired by his life-long integration of Eastern and Western cultural experiences, Greg Aslani has composed this musical piece as played through the dialogue of the two groups of performers. Persian sound (Iranian traditional microtonal scale) and Western contemporary sound are synergistically intertwined to create a peaceful ambiance of Persian music and the message of peace.

    During the first interlude, thirteen minutes in duration, flute, harp and guitar trio create a bridge between the East and the West. Persian music is then progressively played by Tar, Tombak, Daf, percussion and vocal performance of the Noavaran Ensemble ( in conjunction with the recital by Babak Taleghani of a poem by Davood Rahni. The latter performance is interspersed with flute, harp and guitar. The finale is a true convergence of both ensembles. Noavaran Ensemble