A number of Iranian musicians along with violinists, cellists and other string instrumentalists from the National Symphony Orchestra of Ukraine joined together to perform the concert by giants of traditional Iranian music Mohammadreza Darvishi and Hossein Alizadeh at Tehran's National Grand Hall on December 26 and 27, Tehran Times reported.
Selections performed included Iranian tar virtuoso Hossein Alizadeh's "Osyan" ("Revolt," 1983) "Torkaman" ("Turkmen," 1986), and "Neynava" (1995) and Mohammadreza Darvishi's "Kalidar" from their repertoire.
Kamkar criticized Darvishi's recent comments on the Tehran Symphony Orchestra's incapability of performing "Kalidar" and told MNA, "When Darvishi said that that the Tehran orchestra or any other Iranian orchestra is not capable of performing the pieces, I was not upset and even thought that he might be correct because 'kalidar' is a complex composition and the Tehran orchestra might not render an adequate performance. But after I saw the performance, unfortunately, I must say it came across as a bad and inept performance."
"Kalidar," the latest composition by Darvishi, is based on a novel of the same name authored by Iranian novelist Mahmud Dowlatabadi.
In a press conference before the concert, Darvishi remarked, "Strictly speaking, there isn't a real symphony orchestra in Iran and only with difficulty can one find 40 violin-family string instrumentalists with a good conductor.
"In addition, there is the problem of finding a good studio where music can be recorded professionally. We also don't want to ruin a good composition with a bad performance. There are several good orchestras in Kiev of which the National Symphony Orchestra is the best and all are always busy with performances."
Kamkar later added, "I had no idea about the National Symphony Orchestra of Ukraine, but had heard the members and the conductor are all professionals, but what I saw was quite the opposite. The movements of conductor Vladimir Sirenko in conducting the piece "Neynava" were not at all similar to those of other professional conductors.
"The members also presented very weak performances with a few exceptions, including the lady playing the violincello. This is while the musicians of the ex-Soviet Union and Moscow are among the best in the music world, and Ukraine is also the same," he highlighted.
"I think it is wrong to call the group an orchestra, because a symphony orchestra is much bigger, and wind instruments and percussions play major roles in them. But this was more a string orchestra and it appears that either it was not the National Symphony Orchestra of Ukraine, or that the Ukraine National Orchestra is really not world class, or possibly the musicians went on stage without benefit of a previous rehearsal. If any of these possibilities were true, I believe it was an insult to the audience and the viewers."
Kamkar later emphasized that Darvishi should retract his words about the Tehran Orchestra and continued, "I dare say the Tehran Orchestra or even the Parsian Orchestra would have performed the pieces better. Alizadeh surely remembers his 'Neynava' that was performed ten years ago by conductor Iraj Sahbaii or even last year's performance by the Parsian Orchestra."
He further talked about the composition of 'Kalidar' and said, "On hearing the piece, the first question that arose was why is there no sign of the regional music of Khorasan, where the story takes place. The second point is the duration, which if shortened by 10 minutes, would be no problem, but the composition required 45 minutes to perform without anything special occurring.
"Darvishi had declared that the composition was intended to reach the depths of the story, but the question is that if he had made use of Iranian music, would it have remained on the surface? I believe a professional musician is the one who presents an impression of himself, his nationality, dialect and language of his homeland in his composition.
"Darvishi is more of a researcher of regional music rather than a musician, and I am surprised that he did not make use of the rich treasure of regional melodies in his composition. If he had done so, his composition would have been transformed into an international work, because both Iranian and foreign listeners prefer music with regional overtones," he concluded.