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Photos of Alim Gasimov to be presented at UNESCO headquarters

28 March 2019 20:45 (UTC+04:00)
Photos of Alim Gasimov to be presented at UNESCO headquarters

By Mirsaid Ibrahimzade

Photos of the world famous Azerbaijani “khanende” Alim Gasimov will be presented in public, educational and cultural institutions of France.

Report informs that the photos were taken as part of the musical project "Seven Beauties", implemented by the Association of Friends of Azerbaijan in France, SAPEM, the Embassy of Azerbaijan in France and the Azerbaijan House in Paris.

Photos of Alim Gasimov will be presented in various organizations in France, including the State Library named after Francois Mitterrand, City Hall Cognac, UNESCO headquarters and other buildings.

As part of the Seven Beauties project, 7 video clips, the “Gara Torpag” disc with mugham performed by Alim Gasimov on poems by the prominent Azerbaijani poet Nizami Ganjavi, 12 photographs of the “khanende” and a book about him will be presented.

Alim Gasimov is an Azerbaijani musician and one of the foremost mugham singers in Azerbaijan. His music is characterized by his vocal improvisation and represents a move away from the traditional style of mugham. Gasimov has recorded nine albums, three of which are mugham albums with his daughter, Farghana Gasimova.

Gasimov began singing professionally while Azerbaijan was still under Soviet rule and the mugham form had not received support from the state. However, Gasimov's growing popularity was accompanied by declining Soviet influence and in 1983 he won the national Jabbar Garyaghdioghlu Singing Competition.

As his career progressed he was recognized internationally, winning awards at the 1983 and 1987 UNESCO Symposia on Traditional and Modern Art of Central Asian and Asian Countries.

Gasimov was named the "People's Artist of Azerbaijan" in 1993 and earned the highest honour in his field in 1999 when he won the International IMC-UNESCO Music Prize — an award given to high calibre musicians such as Dmitri Shostakovich, Leonard Bernstein, Ravi Shankar and Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan.

He took the opportunity to perform in New York City in 2005 as part of Yo-Yo Ma's Silk Road Project. The concert aimed to promote multi-cultural artistic exchange between eastern and western cultures.

According to The New York Times, "Alim Gasimov is simply one of the greatest singers alive, with a searing spontaneity that conjures passion and devotion, contemplation and incantation."

He also joined Sabina Babayeva on stage at the Grand Finale of the Eurovision Song Contest 2012 in Baku to sing back vocals for her entry “When the Music Dies”.

On 21 November 2009, he was included in a 500 most influential Muslims of world book. The Icelandic singer Björk complimented Gasimov, by naming him as her "favourite singer alive today”. In 2009, Turkish newspaper Zaman named him as "Central Asia's Greatest Voice".

In 2010, Alim Gasimov was nominated for the United States National Public Radio's "50 great voices in recorded history" award.

Touching upon personal life, “khanende” teaches mugham at Asaf Zeynally Music School in Baku.

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