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Iran Musicians Perform On Balconies, Rooftops In Isolation Amid COVID-19 Crisis

Despite the aspersion music casts in the Islamic Republic, impromptu concerts by musicians in isolation performing in homes offer hope to listeners in Iran.


With shuttered concert halls and art centers, the Iranian musicians have reportedly taken to odd spaces like the tank installed rooftops, quirky balconies, debris littered front yards, and empty porches to strum on their symphony orchestra during the Coronavirus quarantine period. Isolated at home, the instrumentalists can be heard performing their cellos, trombones, and violins down the street. 

Despite the aspersion music casts in the Islamic Republic, the impromptu concerts offer hope to the listeners as the soothing melodies provide give relief from the fears of the deadly COVID-19. A 28-year-old Mojgan Hosseini is often seen plucking the strings of his local instruments named Qanun, engulfing the quiet capital under the lockdown with musical tunes, a news agency reported. 

“We’re not front-line medical workers, hospital custodians, or grocery workers, but I think many musicians — myself included — have felt an obligation to offer our services of comfort and entertainment in these trying times,” said Arif Mirbaghi, an Iranian bassist who routinely performs in his front yard. 

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Rooftop is a stage

Among the musicians performing on rooftops are the female musicians, as per media reports. A 36-year-old composer and tar player, Midya Farajnejad, plays the long-necked stringed instrument on the terrace. “It is not easy for me to stay at home and not be on stage or in the studio during quarantine, so I play tar on the roof, to share my emotions with the neighbours,” Farajnejad was quoted as saying after she finished a musical session.

Agreeing to Farajnejad, 26-year-old accordion player Kaveh Ghafari said, “During these quarantine days, the only place that I feel I can share my music is in my yard with my neighbors as my main audience,” he said. “These days I can feel the power of art more than ever.” 

The member of Iran’s National Orchestra, Farajnejad, also reportedly said, “Since COVID-19 hit Tehran, the rooftop has become a stage to perform and neighbours have become the main audience.” As of April 17, Iran has over 77,995 confirmed cases of the Coronavirus, and over 4,869 deaths have been reported that has led the country to tighten the lockdown measures and impose stricter movement restrictions nationwide. 

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(With AP Inputs)

(Image Credit: AP)

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