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Crossing Boundaries Concert Series Vol. 12: Celebrating Ostad Shajarian

November 8, 2020 @ 1:00 pm - November 16, 2020 @ 3:00 am EST

$10 – $30
Lale Sayoko, Kamyar Arsani, Fanny Pérez Gutiérrez

CRS (Center for Remembering & Sharing) presents CROSSING BOUNDARIES Concert Series Vol. 12: CELEBRATING OSTAD SHAJARIAN, legendary master of Persian classical music who passed on Oct 8. Curated by LÄLE SAYOKO, the concert features Shajraian’s musical adaptations of poems by both revered Sufi poets as well as beloved contemporary Iranian poets, performed by D.C. based KAMYAR ARSANI (vocals & percussion) with dance by LÄLE SAYOKO & members of the CRS SUFI DANCE COMMUNITY.

Ostad Mohammad-Reza Shajarian was called “Iran’s greatest living maestro of Persian classical music.” He toured all over the world, is a multi-Grammy award winner, and was honored with UNESCO’s Golden Picasso Medal and Mozart Medal. While he mastered the styles of many older masters, he also developed his own beloved style and set many famous poems to music, which he sang and recorded. This concert features his musical adaptations of poems by Rumi (13th century), Baba Taher (11th century), Hooshang Ebtehaj (H.E.Sayeh) (20th century), and Ali Mo’allem (20th century).

Due to the ongoing pandemic, this concert will be filmed and streamed online, premiering on Sunday, November 8, 2020 at 1 pm with a live Q&A. The concert will be available to watch for seven days. Tickets for this year’s online concerts will be available for $30, $20, or $10.

curator/direction: LÄLE SAYOKO

musician: KAMYAR ARSANI (daf/vocals)


video/editing: CHRIS FIORE


Kamyar Arsani is a multi-instrumentalist, singer and songwriter born and raised in Tehran, Iran. At age 7, Arsani began studying the daf (Persian frame drum) with Master Bijan Kamkar. He also spent time playing meditative rhythms for hours at a time for Sufis. In 2009 the Green Revolution in Iran brought Kamyar and his family to Washington, D.C., where he has been based ever since. He travels up and won the east coast playing daf and other instruments and singing and performing Sufi and Persian folk songs as well as his own compositions and contemporary music of all kinds. Kamyar Arsani regularly travels to NYC to offer Persian Daf lessons at CRS. The Daf is a frame drum with lots of rings inside that you can shake when you play for added effect. It is an integral part of Sufi and Persian music because of the variety of sounds it can produce and its ability to induce trance. Kamyar learned from masters in Iran and has been playing and singing for decades.

Läle Sayoko lives to embody and transmit the voice of spirit through music and dance. As CRS Resident Sufi Dance instructor, choreographer, performing artist, and musical curator, she loves to welcome people into this holy practice to explore and share their own divinity. She intermittently tours internationally with BELLA GAIA, a live concert blending music, dance, technology, and NASA satellite imagery inspired by the experience of astronauts viewing the earth from space. “Sublime” — Village Voice.

One of the founding members of Japan’s famous SAMANYOLU professional belly dance group in Tokyo, Läle went on to a long solo career performing throughout the northeastern USA and touring with United Kingdom’s Mugenkyo Taiko Drummers on over a 100 city tour encompassing the U.K., as well as Turkey’s Baba Zula. About six years ago, she was forced to retire to support her young daughter through a life-threatening medical crisis. Several years later she discovered that she could whirl as a form of prayer to support her daughter and began studying Sufi Dance with Paris-based Sufi Artist Rana Gorgani. In April 2018 Gorgani awarded her the International Sufi Dance Certification Of Cid UNESCO, granting her authority to teach Gorgani’s method of Sufi Dance training.

Paco/Francisco Ordóñez is a seeker, systems engineer and business owner based on Park Avenue in New York City. Originally from Southern Ecuador, in the ancient Cañaris land of Cuenca, and a New York City denizen for over a decade, Francisco has the goal to share all he has learned as a way of emptying himself to allow new collective experiences. He has lived and traveled in several countries in Europe, Asia, and Latin America over the past decades. He deeply loves the ancestral Indigenous Andes traditions, poetry, music, dances, cultures and, principally, peoples. Francisco is a passionate student of Sri Aurobindo, Krishnamuti, and Sufism. He is part of a few social justice organizations and Dervish gatherings and mesmerized by beauty and freedom. A graduate of Systems Engendering, he worked in high school education in the South Bronx integrating digital communities and helping minority women to create ePortfolios. He enjoys places of worship, yoga, reading and spending time in nature, especially in the Sani Desert and in Kyoto.

Fanny Pérez Gutiérrez thinks of art as the love that can be channeled into this realm. For the past few years she has been focused on studying altered states of consciousness that can be accessed through the alignment of the body. She produces work that seeks to amplify important themes of the nature of our existence that have remained hidden or which we have been taught to undermine. https://www.instagram.com/fannsystem/

Christopher Pelham is the Director and co-founder of CRS (Center for Remembering & Sharing) and organizer of the CRS Sufi arts community. A spiritual healer/counselor/teacher and artist, he draws on practices from A Course in Miracles, Non-Violent Communication, improvisational theater, Sufism, and contemporary shamanism to help people remember who they really are. He has taught and/or offered healing in London, in Japan, at the 2018 Awakening to the One Mind Retreat, and at the 2017 Enlight Festival of A Course in Miracles in Ibiza, Spain. Since he began producing live performance events in 1997, he has had the privilege of presenting dozens and dozens of wonderful artists from all over the world. As a performer, he performed in numerous productions Off Off Broadway in NYC as well as in productions in Texas and North Carolina. He is also an avid amateur photographer and filmmaker.

Filmmaker, writer, and artist Chris Fiore, born in 1959 in Norfolk, Virginia, received his BFA from Antioch College in 1984. In the late 80’s he was one of the founders of the Zone, an artist collective occupying an abandoned williamsburg warehouse at 104 South 4th St. Fiore showed at the East Village’s KOAP gallery in the early 90’s. His first documentary, “Trip and Go Naked,” edited over the course of five years between paid gigs won the Excellence in Sexual Theater award at the 2004 Arlene’s Grocery Picture Show. He went on to direct the feature documentary “ ackstage” for Miramax, a behind the scenes look at Jay Z’s Hard Knock Life Tour. The film had a profitable run in theaters and is still occasionally in rotation on the Showtime network 17 years after it was made. Fiore has also directed documentaries on the making of the Victoria’s Secret Christmas Catalog, the band Paramore, as well as two prime time specials for Fox Television. His most recent documentary, “Goodwoman,” tells the story of Debra Goodman, an activist brutally arrested for filming the NYPD. Featured in several film festivals, “Goodwoman” won the Grand Jury Award at the 2016 LA Film Invasion film festival. He’s currently directing a documentary and web series on artist Ken Hiratsuka.

Fiore’s first feature film script, “The Utopia Virus,” was a finalist in the 2006 Final Draft Big Break Competition, garnering him representation and a Hollywood roller coaster ride as directors Darron Aronofsky, Tony Scott, and Renny Harlin all considered making the film. He also wrote the Wassup Obama ad, described by Salon.com as one of the most creative of the 2008 presidential campaign and winner of a Cannes Lion. He’s currently working on a series of film treatments for a Beijing based production company which is also breathing new life into “The Utopia Virus” by translating the script into Cantonese.

Fiore’s film work has directly influenced his art over the years, in his use of appropriated imagery, presentation of sequential images, and in the cinematically dynamic composition of his mosaic photography. Fiore is represented by the Ethan Pettit Gallery.


Now in its third year, CROSSING BOUNDARIES is a performance series devoted to creating unforgettable live art experiences that dissolve boundaries between performers and audiences, traditional and new music, and the local and the global, bringing people together and promoting the awareness that we each possess a limitless creativity inside us. CROSSING BOUNDARIES is produced by CRS (Center for Remembering & Sharing), a healing and arts center founded in 2004 by artists Yasuko Kasaki and Christopher Pelham and located in NYC. https://www.crsny.org

The 2020 season of CROSSING BOUNDARIES is made possible in part with public funds from Creative Engagement, supported by the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council and the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and administered by LMCC. LMCC empowers artists by providing them with networks, resources, and support, to create vibrant, sustainable communities in Manhattan and beyond.

NYC Cultural Affairs


November 8, 2020 @ 1:00 pm EST
November 16, 2020 @ 3:00 am EST
$10 – $30
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CRS (Center for Remembering & Sharing)
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