COMPOSERS & COMPOSITIONS

Composer. Pianist.

Dance of Terror (2022), new original composition

Featured by the BBC World Service and Lyse Doucet, composer and pianist Arson Fahim’s music is infused with his compassion and a fierce commitment to social justice within his homeland of Afghanistan. Having graduated from the Afghanistan National Institute of Music in 2020, he is now enrolled in a composition degree at Longy School of Music in Boston. Fahim’s music has been... READ MORE

Cellist.

Dawn (2020), original composition orch. by Arson Fahim

Meena Karimi is a cellist, composer, and women’s rights advocate from Afghanistan. She started her musical studies on cello and dilruba and is currently majoring in classical cello performance at Interlochen Arts Academy in Michigan, U.S.A.  She has been featured in the Financial Times, New York Times magazine, NBC News, BBC World with Lyse Doucet, and recently has been part of VII Foundation’s... READ MORE

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Pianist. Academic. Composer. Arranger

Daa Zemoong Ziba Watan (2022), new original arrangement

Pianist, composer, arranger and academic, Ghafar Maliknezhad (b. 1987), holds an MA in Art Criticism from Kazakh National Academy of Arts and a BA in music and piano performance from Kabul University. He has taught across numerous subjects including musicology, music criticism, composition, film music and piano. In addition to his compositions for piano and orchestra, Maliknezhad has previously collaborated with... READ MORE

Conductor. Percussionist. Composer.

Hope (2022), new original composition

Qambar Nawshad (b. 1996) is a composer, arranger and percussionist, and conductor of the National Symphony Orchestra of Afghanistan, now in exile in Portugal where the Afghanistan National Institute of Music is currently being re-established. Nawshad’s arrangements and compositions have been performed and recorded regularly by orchestras in Afghanistan.... READ MORE

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Master Ney Player (Persian Flute)

Heart That Burns (2022), new original composition arr. by Milad Yousufi

Ustad Zalai Pakta (b. 1978) is an award-winning master ney (Persian flute) player, composer and educator. He developed his musical expertise under Ustad Naseer Aziz and worked for 16 years as a musician for the Afghanistan’s National Radio and Television performing with the country’s top musicians and singers. He has performed across the globe including in France, Italy, Turkey, India and the UK, with a performance... READ MORE

Guitarist. Conductor. Composer.

Asta Boro (2022), new original arrangement

Born in Kabul, Afghanistan, Mohsen Saifi (b. 1989) is an academic, guitarist, conductor and composer now based in Germany. As a Lecturer at the Kabul University Music Department since 2012 until the abrupt closure of the department by the Taliban in August 2021, he served as the department’s programme manager and the conductor of the orchestra. He conducted the University’s leading musical ensembles... READ MORE

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Singer. Songwriter. Designer.

Baran (2022), new original composition orchestrated by Matt Holborn, poetry by Mohammad Sharif Saiidi

Elaha Soroor (b. 1989) is a London-based vocalist and composer originally from Afghanistan. Elaha studied Iranian and Afghan traditional music, Indian classical and opera singing techniques in Iran, Afghanistan and India. One of the first female musicians to perform in public after the fall of the Taliban in 2000, Elaha rose to fame through the TV show Afghan Star in 2008. Her national popularity, in a society... READ MORE

Trumpet player. Composer. Arranger

Nastaran (2022), new original arrangement-composition

Raised in AFCECO orphanages in Kabul, trumpet player, composer, and arranger Qudrat Wasefi (b. 1999) is fiercely committed to music as a form of resistance against repression. Since the takeover of Afghanistan, Wasefi has written and produced recordings of a number of compositions including a music video, The Children of War, in collaboration with artists across the globe, A Candle of Hope in the Darkness... READ MORE

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Composer. Pianist. Poet. Visual artist.

Nostalgia (2022), new original composition

Composer, pianist, poet, and visual artist Milad Yousufi (b. 1995) was born in Afghanistan during the civil war and trained at the Afghanistan National Institute of Music before being awarded a full scholarship at the Mannes School of Music. His compositions have been performed by the Kronos Quartet and the New York Philharmonic Chamber Orchestra, Orchestra, and at Lincoln Centre, Boston Symphony Hall, Carnegie Hall... READ MORE