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Tuesday, January 22, 2008
Khorasan bids farewell to legendary musician Qorban Soleimani
Tehran Times Art Desk
TEHRAN -- Haj Qorban Soleimani, veteran dotar player from the Khorasan region died of pneumonia on Sunday in his birthplace, Aliabad village in northeastern Iran. He was 87.
Qorban Soleimani was born in 1920 in Aliabad. He learnt to play the dotar from his father Karbalaii Ramezan who was a famous musician of his time. After his father’s death, he continued learning the dotar as well as taking up singing with the masters Gholamhossein Bakhshi Jafarabadi, Mohammad Qeitani and Avaz Bakhshi.
He gained the high rank of ‘Bakhshi’ at the age of 21, a title given to masters of music in Khorasan, and was able to perform over 90 maqams native to the Khorasan region.
Maqams or maqamat are sets of pitches and characteristic melodic elements combined with a traditional pattern of use, forming a system for the melodic and tonal construction of performances in Islamic music.
Soleimani attended many festivals and invented a new form of the Azeri instrument named the gopuz which was popular with many people. The gopuz is the most ancient stringed instrument of the Republic of Azerbaijan.
In 1991, he attended the music festival held in Avignon, France where he received the honorary title “Real National Treasure”.
His body was buried on Monday in his birthplace Aliabad. Regional artists and cultural officials attended the burial ceremony.