Hafez is considered to have extended the technique of setar-playing and has received praise from musicians and craftsmen alike. At the age of sixteen he performed, among others, at the Sfinks Festival in Belgium, the Festa del Popolo in Italy, the Théâtre de la Ville in Paris and the Beiteddine Festival in Lebanon and many, many more. In 2000, Hafez assembled a talented group of young performers to form the Rumi Ensemble. Together they performed Hafez’s original compositions in a series of landmark concerts in twenty Iranian cities. These musical innovations not only reached younger audiences, they also had an impact on the musical scene in Iran and beyond.
With 140,000 in attendance, The Rumi Ensemble’s concerts in Tehran, set a record for the entire Middle East, Selected pieces from this tour have been performed by the Armenian Philharmonic Orchestra in London’s Royal Albert Hall, and at music festivals including the Sodra Teatern in Stockholm, the De Bijloke in Ghent, Belgium, as well as at the Fez Festival in Morocco, and the Théâtre de la Ville in Paris. At the age of 20, in a search for new artistic ground, Hafez came to New York to study western classical music. In 2005, he received a Diploma in Composition and Conducting from the Mannes College of Music. Later in the year, Hafez, along with new members of his Rumi Ensemble launched “In the Path of Rumi," a highly successful North American tour which performed record-breaking sold-out concerts, to rave reviews. The venues, included Los Angeles’ Kodak theater (12/11/05), - the most highly attended Persian classical music concert outside of Iran – The Atlanta Symphony Hall and traveled to San Francisco, Washington D.C., and Boston.
Hafez’s international appeal led to several invitations to speak at various media outlets, including radio stations such as KPBS, KPFK, KPFA, UC Berkeley Radio and NPR in the United States. Broadcast interviews include a 9-minute on CNN’s Live From with Kyra Phillips (3/29/06), BBC World Service’s program, The Ticket with Mark Coles (4/26/06), a live appearance on the Fox Channel (3/10/06), and an exclusive on ABC NEWS, following a recent New York performance. Hafez is also the recipient of a UCLA creativity award for most distinguished young composer. The Irvine City Hall Award of Distinction in Kurdish music was given to Hafez Nazeri for his contributions in spreading Rumi’s spiritual message of peace through the language of music. The United Nations Association also recognized Hafez’s contributions and his innovation in undertaking the “In the Path of Rumi” tour. February 25, 2006 was named “HAFEZ NAZERI DAY” in San Diego County by the Mayor and the Chairman of San Diego’s Board of Supervisors. Soon after, he received a recognition award from The Congress of the United States and was invited to lecture at Emory University, and Harvard University, where he was recognized for his pioneering efforts and innovation in Persian music. In 2007, The Rumi Symphony Project, which is Hafez’s most passionate and ambitious undertaking to date, culminated in a major work to celebrate the 800th anniversary of Rumi’s birth.
The project was premiered in Los Angeles where it received nine standing ovations. Read more on Last.fm. User-contributed text is available under the Creative Commons By-SA License; additional terms may apply..
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