FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 18 – 21, 2013
The world’s largest contemporary Iranian arts and culture festival at
Harbourfront Centre – the heart of Toronto’s waterfront!TORONTO, ON (June 25, 2013) – The world’s largest Iranian festival, Tirgan, returns to Harbourfront Centre from July 18-21. Artists from across the globe are set to converge at Harbourfront Centre to celebrate Iranian arts and to showcase the richness and diversity of Iranian culture. This year, Tirgan explores the idea of “hope” and highlights humanity’s ability to persevere, overcome and survive. Tirgan also places a special focus on women and the important contributions women have made to Iran’s cultural mosaic. Iranian contemporary arts are shaped in part by members of society whose voice may not be heard, whose image was taboo and whose legal standing was half of their male counterparts. Throughout history, Iranians have had their share of natural and self-inflicted devastations, yet there is no more powerful indication to hope than artistic and cultural heritage. Festival highlights include:• Tirgan opening ceremony - a musical collage that incorporates operatic singing, theatrical elements, video and stage design showcasing one of the most well-known Iranian legends, Arash the Archer;• A performance by Vancouver Pars National Ballet with folk and traditional Iranian dances;• A collection of short films by award-winning filmmaker, Shirin Neshat, along with a Q&A period;• And an opportunity to learn from the guru of Iranian cuisine, Najmieh Batmanglij.For additional information and complete event listings, the public may visit harbourfrontcentre.com or call the Information Hotline at 416-973-4000. Harbourfront Centre is located at 235 Queens Quay West in the heart of downtown Toronto’s waterfront. For information about getting here during the Queens Quay revitalization, visitharbourfrontcentre.com/gettinghereABOUT HARBOURFRONT CENTRE SUMMER SEASONHarbourfront Centre is a Canadian charity operating the 10 prime acres of Toronto's central waterfront as a free and open public site. We celebrate the multiplicities of cultures that comprise Canada and enliven the city through the creative imaginations of artists from across the country and around the globe. Harbourfront Centre attracts more than 17 million visits to its site each year to experience 4,000 diverse public events and activities. Harbourfront Centre receives operational support from the Government of Canada and the City of Toronto and program funding from all levels of government, the private sector and individual donors.
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Tirgan Event Listings
MUSICTirgan Opening Ceremony – Arash the Archer: An Operatic NarrationThursday, July 18 from 8 to 10 p.m. – WestJet Stage ($25)Arash the Archer is an operatic narration of a well known Iranian myth, captivating many with its universal values such as redemption, hope and sacrifice. This interpretation, directed by Siavash Shabanpour, is a musical collage incorporating operatic singing, orchestral music, theatrical elements and video and stage design.Blurred VisionThursday, July 18 from 10 to 11 p.m. – Redpath StageFresh off a major headline tour of the UK, Blurred Vision perform their debut album Organized Insanity. It is no surprise Blurred Vision is being hailed as the next mega global band, being covered in Rolling Stone and Billboard Magazine, as well as displayed in museums across Europe alongside The Beatles, Michael Jackson and Peter Gabriel.Rana Mansour with Erwin Khachikian and KarmandaanFriday, July 19 and Saturday, July 20 from 7:30 to 8:30 p.m. – WestJet StageRana Mansour and Erwin Khachikian perform original songs presented with a modern edge, backed by the band Karmandaan. The performance inspires nostalgia, rocking the audience back to a time when Iranian contemporary music was celebrated.Sepideh Raissadat, Kiya Tabassian and EnsembleFriday, July 19 and Saturday, July 20 from 8:30 to 9:30 p.m. – Enwave Theatre ($40 – adults/$30 – students)This concert is an initiatory journey into various traditions and periods of Persian music. Based on the latest musical researches, Sepideh Raissadat, Kiya Tabassian and their colleagues revisit some of the most interesting and beautiful rediscovered treasures of Persian classical music from the Safavid period. Solo Guitar Performance by Maneli JamalFriday, July 19 from 9 to 9:30 p.m. and Saturday, July 20 (with Sheila Nahrvar) at 9 p.m. – Redpath StageToronto-based Maneli Jamal transforms his nomadic life stories into musical movements while making his solo guitar sound like multiple instruments. Jamal is an award-winning guitarist known for his extended use of moving compositions through real life stories.AjamFriday, July 19 and Saturday, July 20 from 9:30 to 10:30 p.m. – WestJet StageAjam’s live performance is inspired by music and rituals rooted in Iran, such as street and market place performers, music related to traditional sports and religious recitals. Their performance brings the epic and soulful spirit of the native music of Iran to a new generation.Saye SkyFriday, July 19 and Saturday, July 20 at 10:30 p.m. – Brigantine RoomIranian rap artist and LGBTQ rights activist Saye Sky has experienced first-hand oppression and violence against the queer community in Iran. At the age of 13, Sky started to write poetry about women and queer rights and in 2009, she recorded and released her first spoken word single in Iran. NeemehaFriday, July 19 and Saturday, July 20 at 11 p.m. – Brigantine RoomNeemeha performs a collection of their famous pop songs as well as the new avant-garde songs that they have recently composed. This energetic and exotic show features guest musicians Mahsa, Ben and Ekaterina. DJ Taba- Radio JavanFriday, July 19 and Saturday, July 20 from 11:45 p.m. – 2 a.m. – Brigantine RoomRadio Javan hosts two nights of high-energy dancing with one of its most popular DJs, Vahid Tabatabei aka DJ Taba from the popular “Abo Atash” podcast. With almost a decade of experience as a DJ, Taba has quickly become one of the most sought after DJs in Iranian communities around the world. Vesal Ensemble Saturday, July 20 at 3:30 – Brigantine RoomVesal perform eight songs, which represent three different accents of Kurdish language – Kalhori, Sowrani and Orami. Persian Drum Workshop with ArazSaturday, July 20 from 4:30 to 5 p.m. and Sunday, July 21 from 12:30 to 1 p.m. – Redpath StageAraz Naveb Pashayee presents a highly educational and entertaining drum workshop at beginner level to music enthusiasts of all ages. The workshop will contain a short performance, a theory section and a practice section. Hamed Nikpay and Ensemble Saturday, July 20 from 5:30 to 7 p.m. and Sunday, July 21 from 3:30 to 5 p.m. – Enwave Theatre (ticketed event)Hamed Nikpay, a fusion vocalist, multi-instrumentalist and songwriter, performs with highlights from his albums, as well as improvisation with members of a world-class ensemble featuring Farzin Farhadi on soprano sax, Satnam Ramgotra on tabla, Hussain Jiffry on bass and Alfredo Cáceres on flamenco guitar.Babak Taghikhani and Solmaz Peymaei Saturday, July 20 from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. and Sunday, July 21 from 5 to 6 p.m. – Brigantine RoomSolmaz and Babak’s music forms a brand new rendition of what they call a lifetime search for sounds in their instruments. Dilan Ensamble Saturday, July 20 at 6 p.m. and Sunday, July 21 at 5 p.m. – Lakeside TerracePieces performed are a unique selection of melodies based on the vocal repertoire of Kurdistan, Garmivan region. The melodies are improvised by Kamanche and the language of the lyrics is Kalhori. Iranian ChoirSunday, July 21 from 4:30 to 5 p.m. – Redpath StageThe Iranian National Choir, consisting of one pianist and 10 choristers and conducted by Kamal Taravati, performs a collection of western, classical, national, folktronic and pop songs from Iran as well as children and world music. Sary Ensemble Sunday, July 21 at 3 p.m. – Brigantine Room Sary Ensemble presents a program of music from all corners of Iran on traditional instruments including kamanche, tar, robab, qheichak, santour and more. Arrangements are taken from well-known melodies as well as Sary’s transcriptions of regional music traditions. Circle Music GroupSunday, July 21 from 5 to 5:40 p.m. – WestJet StageThe Circle Music Group is a Toronto-based Iranian band founded in 2011, playing a fusion of jazz and pop, with elements of traditional Eastern instruments, as they focus on classical and contemporary Iranian poetry.Emerging Artists from Googoosh Academy Neda and Amirhossein Sunday, July 21 from 5:40 to 6 p.m. – WestJet Stage Neda and Amirhossein have been amongst the finalists in an Iranian pop talent TV show similar to America’s Got Talent. Solo pop songs as well as duets will be performed. Gilaki Folk Music by Sheila NahrvarSunday, July 21 from 3 to 3:30 p.m. – Redpath StageSheila Nahrvar brings her Iranian folk music with classical piano elements to the Redpath Stage. As an Iran-born musician, Nahrvar developed a passion for singing at an early age. In 1995, Nahrvar moved to Toronto and began focusing on Iranian folk music and collaborating with reputed pianist, Amir Rahbar.
DANCETurkish Dance - Odlar Dance EnsembleFriday, July 19 from 7 to 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, July 21 from 1:30 to 2 p.m. – Redpath Stage Part 1 – Azerbaijani Folk Dance – Basqali by Enver Sadigov Basqali is the name of the town where the Azerbaijani folk dance originates.Part 2 – Azerbaijani Folk Dance – Uzun Dere by Üzeyir HacibayovAs one of the most popular Azerbaijani dances, it is truly elegant, attractive and lyrical. Music was composed by Üzeyir Hacibeyov in 1910. Love Stories of the ShahnamehStoryline & Naqqali by GordafaridChoreography & Production Design by Shahrokh Moshkin GhalamDance Performance by Shahrokh Moshkin Ghalam & Miriam PeretzFriday, July 19 at 8 p.m., Saturday, July 20 at 4 p.m. and Sunday, July 21 at 5 p.m. – Fleck Dance Theatre (ticketed event) “Love Stories of the Shahnameh” is based on epic poems from Ferdowsi’s Shahnameh (“Book of Kings”), one of the masterpieces of Persian literature. The performance retells the tales of “Shirin & Khosrow,” “Bahram & Arezoo,” and “Sohrab & Gordafarid.” This epic story combines music, dance and poems with traditional Iranian melodies.Kurdish Dance – Mayn Zard Dance Group Saturday, July 20 at 12:30 p.m. – Redpath Stage This performance covers seven famous styles of Kurdish Dance that have been modified, rearranged and choreographed for stage performance. The seven styles are geryan, shavaneh, chepi, shekaki, pa-ban-pa, zangi and haw-shari. Vancouver Pars National BalletSaturday, July 20 from 3 to 4 p.m. and Sunday, July 21 from 2 to 3 p.m. – WestJet StageThe Vancouver Pars National Ballet (VPNB) presents a variety of folk and traditional Iranian dances sure to captivate audiences. VPNB is committed to preserving and perpetuating the forgotten and lost tradition of Iranian folklore dances and presenting them to the world.Huri – Flamenco Dance & Music with Delara TivSaturday, July 20 at 8 p.m. and Sunday, July 21 at 2 p.m. – Fleck Dance Theatre (ticketed event) Huri brings the essence, purity and integrity of one of the world’s most complex and mysterious art forms, flamenco, to the stage. Choreographed and directed by Delara Tiv, this dance piece focuses on hopes and dreams of childhood, limitations of the society and religion, frustration, rejection of submission, acceptance and survival under oppression and the nostalgia of an abandoned land.
FILMCollection of Short Films by Shirin NeshatFriday, July 19 from 9 to 10:30 p.m. – Studio TheatreAward-winning filmmaker Shirin Neshat’s provocative short films are screened at the Studio Theatre. Her work addresses the social, political and psychological dimensions of women’s experiences in contemporary Islamic societies. Neshat’s provocative photographs, videos and multimedia installations have resonated with curators of many major international art exhibitions, including the XLVIII Venice Biennale, where she won the top prize in 1999.Women Without Men – Film Screening Q&A with Shirin NeshatSaturday, July 20 from 1 to 3 p.m. – Studio TheatreAward-winning filmmaker Shirin Neshat participates in a question and answer session on her first feature-film, Women Without Men. The film, which won a Silver Lion for best director at the 2010 Venice Film Festival, tells the story of four women struggling to escape oppression in Tehran.The King of Black – Film Screening Q&A with Shoja AzariSunday, July 21 from 5 to 6 p.m. – Studio TheatreThis 24-minute film is an adaption of a chapter of the Haft Paykar, by Nizami of Ganja. Over the past few years, Azari has successfully taken historical and traditional work from the past and merged it with a contemporary context.
TALKS/PRESENTATIONS Correlations of Visual Arts & Cinema and Q&A Friday, July 19 at 7 p.m. – Lakeside Terrance Shirin Neshat’s provocative photographs, videos and multimedia installations have resonated with curators of many major international art exhibitions, including the XLVIII Venice Biennale, where she won the top prize in 1999. The work of Neshat addresses the social, political and psychological dimensions of women’s experience in contemporary Islamic societies. Monirou Ravanipur ReadingSaturday, July 20 from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m. – Miss Lou’s RoomMonirou Ravanipur, internationally acclaimed writer, is the author of 12 titles published in Iran. Her tales, described as “reminiscent in their fantastic blend of realism, myth, and superstition of writers like Rulfo, Garcia Marquez, even Tutuola,” frequently take place in the small, remote village in southern Iran where she was born. She reads three chapters from her novel, An Angel on Earth.Literary Presentation by Leili AnvarSaturday, July 20 from 3 to 4 p.m. – Miss Lou’s RoomA presentation of the Conference of the Birds, together with the projection and commentary composed in the end of the 7th century by Farîduddiîn ‘Attâr. This lecture follows the hoopoe, a metaphor for a poet and spiritual guide, through the seven valleys up to the final encounter with Sîmorgh, a bird who is a manifestation of the divine. Shahnameh – The Epic of the Persian Kings with Hamid RahmanianSaturday, July 20 from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m. and Sunday, July 21 from 3 to 4 p.m. – Miss Lou’s Room Magical birds, superhuman heroes and tales of century-long battles enrich this narrative meant to protect the Iranian collective memory, language and culture. The 500 pages of illustrations are created by award-winning graphic artist and filmmaker, Hamid Rahmaian. Rahmaian takes the audience to a journey of making of the new illustrated edition of Shahnameh and discusses the formation and the way illustrations were conceived, creation of the map and genealogy of the characters in the book.Ties Between Ancient Iran and Italy with Kaveh FarrokhSaturday, July 20 from 7:30 to 8:30 p.m. – Miss Lou’s RoomKaveh Farrokh, author of three history books, highlights decades of research and the ties between ancient Iran and Italy. The figures of Persophone, Darius the Great, the goddesses Kore and Anahita are some of the ties that are addressed.The Value of the Radif or Collection of Modal Systems with Lloyd MillerSunday, July 21 from 1:30 to 2 p.m. – Miss Lou’s RoomDr. Lloyd Miller leads a lecture exploring his discovery of Master Safvat in 1961, the value of the radif and the collection of the modal systems passed down by authorized masters. Dr. Miller has studied Persian music in Iran and Paris, studied 12 languages, authored over 20 books on music of various traditions, taught music for 14 years, played over 100 instruments in 15 world traditions and directed 12 music ensembles. Eastern Arts of Visualizing Iranian Music Through Patterned Movement with Katherine St. JohnSunday, July 21 from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m. – Miss Lou’s RoomKatherine St. John discusses the system developed by eastern arts of visualizing Iranian music through patterned movement by ballet experts.In the Lion’s Shadow – Book Introduction by Fariborz MokhtariSaturday, July 20 from 7:30 – 8:30 p.m. – Lakeside TerraceDr. Fariborz Mokhtari’s critically acclaimed book, In the Lion’s Shadow: The Iranian Schindler and his Homeland in the Second World War was originally published in 2011, yet has been republished twice since. The book chronicles the little known heroic efforts of various Iranian diplomats based in various countries during World War II to save threatened Jewish families. Dr. Mokhtari discusses his masterful book, which is followed by a Q&A session and book signing.
THEATREConference of the Birds Theatre Workshop Saturday, July 20 at 1:30 p.m. and Sunday, July 21 at 1 p.m. – Brigantine RoomThe Conference of the Birds is a mystic fable about humankind’s search for truth. This performance and workshop, directed by Soheil Parsa, with acting students at Parya Foundation, is performed in Persian.
ART EXHIBITIONSThe Third Space (Sunday, June 21 to Sunday, Sept. 15)Artists: Sona Safaei-Sooreh, Naz Rahbar, Elnaz Maassoumian, Gita Hashemi, Negar Farajiani, Soheila K. Esfahani, and Sanaz Mazinani (Curator)Friday, June 19 and Saturday June 20 from 12 – 8 p.m. and Sunday, June 21 from 12 – 6 p.m. – York Quay GalleryThe Third Space is a group exhibition focused on work that navigates the terrains of humanity. It is the site for hope, a place where the real and imaginary converge, and the moment when here and there connect.Hope Photo ContestFriday, July 19 at 8 p.m., Saturday, July 20 at 12 p.m. and Sunday, July 21 at 12 p.m. – East Side TentThe exhibition showcases photos that made it into the final round of the Hope Photo Contest 2013.
KIDSKids ProgramsSaturday, July 20 at 1 p.m. and Sunday, July 21 at 12 p.m. – Zone 5A variety of kids programs and workshops.Puppet ShowSaturday, July 20 at 3:30 p.m. and Sunday, July 21 at 3 p.m. – Lakeside Terrace Farrokh Khan is the grandson of the great, great, great and great Kinf Salim. It is a tradition that when the Prince marries the girl he loves, there is great celebrations for seven days and seven nights. For many years, Mobarak has been the one who plans the wedding cermonies for King Salim’s children. Mobarak is responsible to every aspect of the wedding but unfortunately, during the first night of the wedding the bride goes missing! 1001 NightsSaturday, July 20 from 4 to 5 p.m. and 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. and Sunday, July 21 from 1 to 2 p.m. – Studio TheatreA new animated comedy series, 1001 Nights is an original show that brings the delightful tales of the famed 1001 Arabian Nights to the screen with hilarity, excitement and non-stop fast paced action. Filled with exciting stories, vivid animation and unforgettable characters, the award-winning animated series is currently broadcasting in 80 countries in more than 15 languages on stations such as Teletoon, CBC, Disney, Discovery Kids and ORF. Following the film is a Q&A session with the show creators.
FOODTraditional Tea HouseFriday, July 19 from 7 to 11 p.m., Saturday, July 20 from 12 to 11 p.m. and Sunday, July 21 from 12 to 6 p.m. – Zone 6Step into the exotic Iranian tea house and be transported all the way to Iran! Run by the Nawranj Iranian Association, this authentic tea house is the place to relax with the perfect cup of steeped tea.Iranian Cooking Demonstration with Najmieh BatmanglijSaturday, July 20 and Sunday, July 21 from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. – Lakeside TerraceDon’t miss out on the opportunity to learn from the guru of Iranian cooking, Najmieh Batmanglij. Batmanglij demonstrates classic Iranian dishes including green bites, saffron-flavoured rice with golden crust and more.
GENERAL HARBOURFRONT CENTRE EVENTS – SEASON LONGWorld Café (Weekends from May – October) The best cuisine from around the world all day and night, offering unique and fun dining experiences! We're serving up sizzling tastes all summer long!Lake View Market (Weekends from May – October)Shop the world every weekend, all summer long! Our Lake View Market (formerly International Marketplace) features fab finds from all corners of the globe including old world crafts and new, unique designs. Choose from traditional artifacts, local, artisanal, eco friendly, fair trade products and more!Street Stage (Weekends from May – October)Toronto's most entertaining street performers animate Harbourfront Centre’s site!Canoe Rides on The Natrel® Pond (Weekends from May – October)Canoe and paddleboat rides will be available at the Natrel® Pond all summer long! Summer Music in the Garden, presented by TD Bank Group (Most Thursdays at 7 p.m. & Sundays at 4 p.m. from June – Sept.)Our wildly popular garden music series returns as the country’s best musicians perform in the magical setting of the Toronto Music Garden. Free garden tours Wednesday at 11 a.m. and Thursday pre-concert at 5:30 p.m. Dancing on the Pier (Thursdays from June 27 – Sept.19)The shores of Lake Ontario transform into Toronto's most scenic ballroom. Live bands, social dance clubs and instructors highlight dance trends from across the world.DJ Deep Fried Fridays (Fridays from June 28 – Aug. 30)Local DJs spin music on the Redpath Stage while vendors at the World Café offer a selection of deep fried treats to compliment their set. Free Flicks (Wednesdays from July 3 – Aug. 28)Enjoy a selection of your favourite films – lakeside and under the stars on the WestJet Stage.Yoga in Exhibition Common (Thursdays from July 4 – Aug. 1 and Sept. 5 – 26)Free outdoor yoga classes for all levels in our beautiful new Exhibition Common. Don't forget your mat!Tai Chi in Exhibition Common (Tuesdays from July 9 – 30 and Aug. 6 – 27)Free outdoor Taoist Tai Chi classes for all levels. Learn the movements of this ancient Chinese martial art in our new Exhibition Common.Tots Yoga in Exhibition Common (Tuesdays from Sept. 3 – 24)Caregivers and toddlers 2 – 4 years of age are welcome in our upbeat and lively Tots Yoga classes in our new Exhibition Common. Don’t forget your mat! The Tale of Harbourfront Centre (Ongoing)Created by FIXT POINT, The Tale of Harbourfront Centre is a storytelling initiative that will capture and celebrate the 40 year history of this cultural institution through the gathering, mapping and interactive presentation of living memories. A Fresh Ground new works commission.Summer Camps 2013 (July 2 – Aug. 30)Time for adventure! Harbourfront Centre offers one of the largest and most diverse day camp programmes in Canada, offering a multitude of exhilarating camps, a convenient downtown location and the best counsellors in the city.International Festival of Authors Presents (Ongoing)Weekly readings, interviews, round table discussions and special events continue throughout the summer including IFOA at The Ex on August 22.(June 22 through Sept. 15)Seven new exhibitions in visual arts, photography, craft & design and architecture explore the idea of terrain through an artistic lens. (June 21 through September 15)The Third Space is a group exhibition curated by Sanaz Mazinani as part of the Tirgan Festival. Artists working in a variety of media explore the idea of cultural transience. Part of Summer 2013 Visual Arts Exhibitions. Nine Rivers City: Toronto’s Extraordinary Waterways (June 21, 2013 through June 2014)In the new Exhibition Common next to Ontario Square and Canada SquareA breathtaking, large-scale outdoor photographic exploration of Toronto’s nine rivers. Six of Canada’s most talented and exciting contemporary visual artists document the misunderstood environmental and cultural resource that is Toronto’s river system. The exhibition features 72 large-scale photographic images creating the largest outdoor exhibition space in Canada. Produced by Harbourfront Centre in partnership with Toronto and Region Conservation (TRCA) with generous support from Menkes.
ON SITE ALL THE TIMEThe Power PlantCanada's leading public gallery devoted exclusively to contemporary visual art. Admission is free. Sailing & PowerboatingBoating becomes accessible to Toronto residents and visitors from around the world through Harbourfront Centre’s instruction, membership and rental programs.Lakeside Local Bar and Grill Enjoy delicious casual dining on the waterfront overlooking The Natrel® Pond.The Centre ShopThe Centre Shop carries MoMA and Red Dot awarding-winning designs as well as Canadian crafts on the cutting edge. Craft and Design StudiosProviding an unparalleled opportunity to witness, understand and experience work being created in glass, ceramics, textiles and jewellery.Canada Square (opening July 1)Toronto’s newest public space overlooking Lake Ontario. Featuring more than 40 metasequoia (dawn redwood) trees, Canada Square is an inspiring place to gather and celebrate our great country. Officially opening July 1, Canada Square celebrates Canada Day with dynamic programming including family fun and live performances. Canada Square is a joint project of Harbourfront Centre and Waterfront Toronto funded by the Government of Canada.Ontario Square With the Ontario Boreal Forest as its inspiration, Harbourfront Centre's Ontario Square is an open public space for relaxing in the midst of quaking aspen trees, taking in a daytime performance, or a enjoying the evening light spectacle provided by James Carpenter’s artwork. Officially opening June 23, Ontario Square celebrates culture and creativity all summer long. Funding for the construction of Ontario Square was provided to Harbourfront Centre by the Government of Ontario.Exhibition Common Located adjacent to Ontario Square and Canada Square, Harbourfront Centre's new activity area, Exhibition Common, hosts marketplaces, food concessions, recreational activities like yoga and more until the next phase is completed. Exhibition common is home to NINE RIVERS CITY: Toronto's Extraordinary Waterways, featuring 72 images by six visual artists in a commissioned outdoor photography exhibition exploring Toronto's incredible river system.