Compositions

Vanishing Point (2021) 30'00"

A proud, recently retired woman and her adult daughter square-off in a grand but faded Montréal apartment. It’s a familiar and tiresome routine for the two of them, but today their complex give-and-take will open a door to an entirely unexpected, terrifying, and potentially wondrous future neither are fully ready to enter. Vanishing Point is a 30-minute opera for soprano, mezzo-soprano, and Pierrot Ensemble instrumentation that I created in collaboration with librettist Nika Khanjani. We have taken elements from our shared history as Iranian immigrants to craft a challenging piece of complex and nuanced emotional shifts, a whiplash of tenderness and bitterness, and a sober question of whether we can reframe a crisis into an opportunity to show up fully present for someone we love even as we watch them slip away. Densely crafted around themes of loss, migration, and unresolved trauma, it asks audiences to bring their attention, patience, and empathy to an emotional canvas that is perhaps uncommon in traditional opera.

We have designed this opera as a vehicle exclusively for BIPOC performers. On the premier perfromance, Dr. J. Marchand Knight and Fredericka Petit-Homme will embody two women who, like many Iranian immigrants to North America, resist aligning themselves with any simple and reductive category—especially when facing the universal challenges and heartbreak of the loss of identity through dementia.

The world premiere of opera will take place at Salle Bourgie, Montreal, Quebec on October 10, 2021 at 7:30 pm (EDT). Link: https://thepointofsale.com/tickets/trytique

 

Dancing My Heart Out (2020) 5'30

Dancing My Heart Out is a solo cello composition commissioned by amazingly talented cellist, Dobrochna Zubek. The idea was to create a composition that was a reflection on the lockdown period in 2020. The musical idea develops through the juxtaposition of playing on the instruments and using the instrument's body as a percussion instrument. The two ideas are woven into each other in a way that one comes out of or dissolves to another.

Once Upon a River (2020) 7'00"

Once Upon a River is commissioned by Seattle-based guitarist, Naeim Rahmani, for Seattle-Isfahan project: 33.

Once Upon a River is a seven-minute music composed for tenor saxophone, guitar, electric guitar, piano and double bass. It is inspired by Sohrab Sepehri's poem, Peygham-e Mahiha, and composed in form of Mendelssohn's songs without words.

Stay tuned for premier's information in Seattle, October 2020.

Blue Girl

Blue Girl (2020) is a three-channel video by video, net and performance artist, Raheleh Saneie. The film is a homage to women who self immolate as a form of protest against domestic violence. I had the privilege to be part of this project and collaborate as the composer and sound artist.
The music is performed by Tahirih Vejdani (soprano), Stacy Dunlap (mezzo soprano), Dobrochna Zubek (cello), Nava Keyhanirad and Ferial Tahmasbi (narration).

Blue Girl made it to the Nine stellar highlights from Toronto’s art scene in 2020.

To watch trailer click here: https://bit.ly/2WzFZFf

Detective Phoebe (2016) 11'00"

Detective Phoebe is commissioned by York Region Chamber Music. In 2015, I was provided with 12 melodies composed by elementary and secondary students based in York region to compose a string quartet. I found some notes along with the melodies. Students had shared their interests, favorite colors, their pets, and etc.
I decided to incorporate all 12 melodies in my composition. I also sent the notes to a Boston based writer, Omid Fallahazad, and commissioned him to write a story inspired by children notes. Then I incorporated the story in the compositions. The performers take turn to tell the story while performing.

Maku (2019) 8'00"

Maku is inspired by excerpts from the Báb's letter to Muhammad Shah, the king of Iran (1808-1848) while he was imprisoned in Maku for 9 months in 1847. Maku is a personal reflection on how human beings respond to physical and spiritual suffering and pain. What was fascinating and resonated with me while composing was to understand that when we reach our threshold or the point that we think we can't to take it any more, we tend to turn to spirituality and find comfort. It is scored for soprano, flute, clarinet, piano, violin, cello and audio playback.
World premier by: Jacqueline Woodley (soprano), Alheli Pimienta (flute), Peter Stoll (clarinet), Alex Toskov (violin), Narmina Afandiyeva (piano), Pegah Yazdani (piano) and Samuel Bisson (cello).
https://soundcloud.com/parisabet/maku-parisa-sabet-live-recording

Dawn Initiative debut concert, November 23, 2019 at Meridian Arts Centre 6:00 pm.
http://www.meridianartscentre.com/events/dawn

O Nightingale (2019) 4'00"

O Nightingale is a composition inspired by one of Rumi's poem, Nightingale. O Nightingale is commissioned by Chicago based musical group, Nightingale Ensemble. The composition is scored for mezzo-soprano, flute, guitar and harp.

Beauty, Love and Justice (2019) 16'00"

“Beauty, love and Justice” is a five-movement orchestral composition approximately 16 minutes long. It is developed based on the basic musical elements that I found common among all cultures such as repetition of simple rhythmic pattern, harmonic series and natural sound effects such as breathing, humming, whispering, talking and air sounds. In addition, I explored various ways of incorporating unusual timbral effects and extended techniques to create an intriguing sonic environment. My ultimate goal was to create complexity by fusing simpler musical elements.

The Stars Are Setting (2018) 11'00"

The Stars Are Setting is composed for mandolin orchestra, guitar quartet, voice and strings based on 4 quatrains by Hakim Omar Khayyam (1048 – 1131), a Persian poet, mathematician and astronomer. This composition was commissioned by the Seattle Mandolin Orchestra in conjunction with the Seattle-Isfahan Music Project.

It will be world premiered on June 3, 2018 at Trinity Parish Church, Seattle, WA
For more information about the project please visit: https://www.naeimrahmani.com/seattle-isfahan-guitar-project

A Cup of Sin (2017) 15'00"

A Cup of Sin is composed for chamber ensemble and soprano based on the poetry of Nobel Prize-nominated Iranian poet Simin Behbahani. In this poem, Behbahani addresses sexual violence against women. A Cup of Sin was commissioned by Tim Brady for the Instruments of Happiness - The Lioness of Iran Project. The composition exists in two versions:

  • Voice and electric guitar quartet
  • Voice, clarinet, piano, viola, cello and electric guitar

The creation of this composition was made possible by a generous grant from the Ontario Arts Council Music Creation Project Grant.

Performances: Toronto (Mar. 22, 2018), Montréal (Mar. 27, 2018), Québec City (Mar. 29, 2018)

March 22nd concert was co-presented by New Music Concerts at Music Gallery.
 
The Lioness of Iran project was planned to go on tour in March 2020 and have more performances in Calgary and London, Ontario. However due to COVID19, the tour was cancelled.