Persian love story ‘Layla and Majnun’ to premiere at Zellerbach

Persian love story ‘Layla and Majnun’ to premiere at Zellerbach ... 28/09/2016 Fun

Keywords:#Azerbaijan, #Berkeley, #Iran, #Leba_Hertz, #Nizami, #Nizami_Ganjavi, #Pacific, #Persian, #Saturday, #September,, #Silk_Road, #Soviet, #Soviet_Union

By Leba Hertz Published 5:37 pm, Tuesday, September 27, 2016
“Layla and Majnun,” a Persian love story, will premiere in Berkeley.
It’s always a special occasion when the Mark Morris Dance Group comes to town. And this time is no different.
Morris’ “Layla and Majnun,” a work co-commisioned by Cal Performances, makes its world premiere in Berkeley this weekend. As a a special bonus, the music will be performed by the Silk Road Ensemble with vocals by Azerbaijan’s mugham vocalists Alim Qasimov and his daughter Fargana Qasimova.
The Arabian tale of forbidden love, “Layla and Majnun” has many incarnations, but it is mostly associated with Persian poet Nizami Ganjavi. It also was adapted into an opera by Azerbaijani Uzeyir Hajibeyli (1885-1948), and a chamber version of the opera will be performed along with the dance.
Among the activities in conjunction with the performance is a series of films, in collaboration with Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive, from Iran and the former Soviet Union about unrequited love, running through Saturday, Oct. 1.
— Leba Hertz
“Layla and Majnun”: Mark Morris Dance Group and the Silk Road Ensemble perform. 8 p.m. Friday-Saturday, Sept. 30-Oct; 1 and 3 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 2. $18-$146. Zellerbach Hall, Bancroft Way, Berkeley. (510) 642-9988.
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