Third Int'l Mugham Festival opens in Baku Saturday
By Nigar Orujova
The third International Mugham Festival will be opened at the Heydar Aliyev Center in the Azerbaijani capital Baku on Saturday, March 9.
The World of Mugham (folk music) festival, which will be held until March 19, is organized by the Heydar Aliyev Foundation, Culture and Tourism Ministry and Azerbaijan Composers Union.
The orchestras will be conducted by People's Artist Agaverdi Pashayev and Honoured Art Figure Fakhraddin Karimov.
The festival will feature performances of Azerbaijan State Symphonic Orchestra, Folk Instruments Orchestra, State Chamber Orchestra, State Song and Dance Ensemble and State Choral Chapel.
The event will continue with performances by Simara Imanova, Tayyar Bayramov, Sebuhi Ibayev, Ilkin Ahmedov, Elnur Zeynalov, Arzu Aliyeva, Vusale Musayeva, Afaq Abbasova, Farid Aliyev, Babek Nifteliyev, Sabina Arabli, Gullu Muradova and Shahin Novresli at the International Mugham Center.
According to the Culture and Tourism Ministry, concerts featuring Azerbaijani and foreign musicians will be held in Baku and in the regions of the country.
Moreover, an international mugham contest on March 15-18, an international scientific workshop on March 12-15 and master classes are expected to be held as part of the festival.
World-famous musicians and bands from the USA, France, Canada, United Kingdom, Spain, Italy, Germany, Turkey, Russia, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan, Iran, Iraq, Egypt, Jordan, Japan, China, India, Tunisia, Libya, and Brazil will visit Azerbaijan to take part in the festival.
In the frame of the festival, Baku Jazz Center will host concerts featuring famous jazz performers Jamil Amirov, Salman Gambarov, Elchin Shirinov, Etibar Asadli, and Afgan Rasul -- all playing the piano.
The traditional International Mugham Festival is held with the support of the Heydar Aliyev Foundation in March every two years. The first such music festival was held in 2009 and the second one in 2011. The event is aimed at preserving and developing the art of mugham and discovering new talents.
Azerbaijani national folk music, mugham, presupposes vocal-instrumental varieties performed by a group of musicians consisting of a singer - khanende, playing percussion instrument gaval, and stringed musical instruments tar and kemancha.
Mugham began to enter world cultural heritage at the beginning of the last century.
UNESCO included "Azerbaijani music" record consisting of 50 albums into the collection "Anthology of the world's traditional music" in 1971. The records of Azerbaijan's mugham were released again by UNESCO in the series "Musical sources" in 1975.
In 2003, UNESCO recognized mugham as a Masterpiece of Oral and Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.