عنوان مقاله [English]
This article critically assesses the concept of Maktab-e- Esfahan in contemporary history of Iranian classical music in the city of Esfahan. As it is argued, Maktab –e- Esfahan is one of the concepts in Persian classical music that has associated music with the question of identity. It is argued that this term, unlike what is generally projected by its proponents, is a modern phenomenon. Therefore, the birth of Maktab-e- Esfahan is situated in the early 1960's and the exponents of this idea are divided in to two groups: (1) The Sepanta – Kasaei – Omumi faction and; (2) the Yavari – Kazemi group. This concept initially came into written discourse with the writings of Sasan Sepanta in the music journal of Muzik-e- Iran in the early 1960's. The debates concerning this term continued later in the 1970's with performances of a Radif narrative by Hassan Kasaei, the Ney virtuoso and were also reflected in his interviews. In the other faction, Hossein Yavari, also a Ney performer, proposed his orthodox ideas visa-vis Radif and its roots in the city of Esfahan in 1960's and 1970's. It is discussed that the orthodox views of Yavari were targeted against Hassan Kasaei's nationally recognized position as a Ney virtuoso.
On the other hand, Hassan Kasaei's views, early in 1970's were a reaction to the music revivalists of Tehran, and specifically the activities of Nourali Borumand, one of the leading revivalists in Tehran, and his emphasis on the significance of the late nineteenth century Qajar repertoire. As it is argued, Kasaei was for many years, one of the most important advocates of the idea. In addition, it is argued that Kasaei's views were formed as a reaction to the changing nature of audience in regards to classical Iranian music in the mid 1960's.
Yavari's orthodox views, in post-revolutionary Iran, were pursued by one of his pupils, Abbas Kazemi, who gave a different impetus to a more orthodox narrative of Radif and its roots in Esfahan. His orthodox views too, like his predecessor, were directed against the other faction and the national and local status of Hassan Kasaei as a Ney performer.
This article also submits that the Sepanta – Kasaei – Omimi faction had always enjoyed an influential position within musical circles of the city. This authority was on the one hand related to the position of Hassan Kasaei as a virtuoso and on the other hand to the academic background of its experts. Moreover, this wing always enjoyed financial resources. In contrast, the Yavari – Kazemi wing was the subaltern of the city's musical life. This was partly because of the powerful position of the other faction and the weak economic resources of the musicians of this group.