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Persian Archives - Online education for kids

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Tag Archives | Persian

Googoosh still got it

After all these years, Googoosh still knows how to wow a crowd….

Born “Faegeh Atashin” in 1950 in Tehran, “Googoosh” (Atashin’s nickname from birth) began performing at an early age alongside her father, an Iranian-Azerbaijani actor and acrobat. She started to act in movies before she was 10, released her first album in 1966 and over the next thirteen years became the most popular actress and singer in Iran. When the 1979 revolution took place Googoosh was in the United States and could have chosen to stay abroad, but instead she returned to Iran. Back in her homeland she served a three month prison sentence for living with a man out of wedlock, then she had to choose how she would react to the Islamicists’ ban on female vocalists. Rather than flee the country or attempt to perform in protest, Googoosh remained silent; she didn’t sing in public again for over 20 years. In 2000 Googoosh embarked on an international “comeback tour,” performing in 19 cities around the world including Dubai, where the audience included many adoring Iranians. Googoosh continues to perform to enthusiastic crowds, as you’ll see in this video, though, especially after speaking out against the Iranian leadership’s crackdown on 2009 protests, her relationship with her home country’s government continues to be complicated.

Kickin’ it with a Kamancheh

Negar Kharkan really knows how to play that Kamancheh.

The kamancheh is an ancient Persian/Iranian string instrument, one that you may have really enjoyed playing if you were a Persian hipster alive during the Safavid or Qajar periods — i.e. a long time ago. A kamancheh player uses a bow to elicit a lovely tone from three (sometimes four) strings. There are  variants of the instrument all over Turkey, Azerbaijan, Armenia and all around Central Asia, each with its own slightly different structure and distinct musical vibe. Let’s enjoy this video of Persian virtuoso Negar Kharkan making the kamancheh sing.