|Instruments||Setar, Tanbour, Daf|
|Years active||Since 1988|
Hafez began voice lessons at the age of three, and went on to place first in many voice competitions. At seven, he began focusing his studies on Tanbour and Setar which he had been playing since he was three. He then became intrigued by the Daf, a percussion instrument he taught himself to play. In the process, he created a unique technique that is now emulated by many of Iran’s young Daf players.
By the age of nine, Hafez had already begun to perform alongside his father in many music festivals in Europe and the Middle East. Hafez is considered to have extended the technique of Setar-playing and has received praise from musicians and craftsmen alike. At the age of sixteen he performed, among others, at the Sfinks Festival in Belgium, the Festa del Popolo in Italy, the Théâtre de la Ville in Paris and the Beiteddine Festival in Lebanon and many, many more.
In 2000, Hafez assembled a talented group of young performers to form the Rumi Ensemble. Together they performed Hafez’s original compositions in a series of landmark concerts in twenty Iranian cities. These musical innovations not only reached younger audiences, they also had an impact on the musical scene in Iran and beyond. With 140,000 in attendance, The Rumi Ensemble’s concerts in Tehran, set a record for the entire Middle East,
Selected pieces from this tour have been performed by the Armenian Philharmonic Orchestra in London’s Royal Albert Hall, and at music festivals including the Sodra Teatern in Stockholm, the De Bijloke in Ghent, Belgium, as well as at the Fez Festival in Morocco, and the Théâtre de la Ville in Paris.
Move to North America
At the age of 20, in a search for new artistic ground, Hafez went to New York to study western classical music. In 2005, he received a Diploma in Composition and Conducting from the Mannes College of Music. Later in the year, Hafez, along with new members of his Rumi Ensemble launched “In the Path of Rumi," a highly successful North American tour which performed record-breaking sold-out concerts, to positive reviews. The venues, included Los Angeles’ Kodak Theatre - the most highly attended Persian classical music concert outside of Iran, September 2010 Missing or empty
|title= (help) – the Atlanta Symphony Hall and traveled to San Francisco, Washington, D.C., and Boston. Hafez’s international appeal led to several invitations to speak at various media outlets, including radio stations such as KPBS, KPFK, KPFA, UC Berkeley Radio and NPR in the United States.
Broadcast interviews include a 9-minute on CNN’s Live From with Kyra Phillips (March 29, 2006), BBC World Service’s program, The Ticket[disambiguation needed] with Mark Coles (4/26/06), a live appearance on the Fox Channel (March 10, 2006), and an exclusive on ABC News, following a recent New York performance.
Hafez is also the recipient of a UCLA creativity award for most distinguished young composer. The Irvine City Hall Award of Distinction in Kurdish music was given to Hafez Nazeri for his contributions in spreading Rumi’s spiritual message of peace through the language of music. The United Nations Association also recognized Hafez’s contributions and his innovation in undertaking the “In the Path of Rumi” tour.
February 25, 2006 was named “Hafez Nazeri Day” in San Diego County by the Mayor and the Chairman of San Diego’s Board of Supervisors. Soon after, he received a recognition award from the United States Congress and was invited to lecture at Emory University, and Harvard University, where he was recognized for his pioneering efforts and innovation in Persian music.
In 2007, the Rumi Symphony Project, which is Hafez’s most passionate and ambitious undertaking to date, culminated in a major work to celebrate the 800th anniversary of Rumi’s birth. The project was premiered in Los Angeles where it received nine standing ovations.
- Untold 2014 Rumi Symphony Project, Cycle 1, with Shahram Nazeri and the Rumi Ensemble. Recorded in four countries with over 35 Grammy Award winning artists and Deepak Chopra. On presale now by Sony Classical at Amazon.com. Release date March 4, 2014.
- The Passion of Rumi 2008, with Shahram Nazeri and Rumi Ensemble, Live recording from Tehran 2000.
- Mythical Chant 2004, also called Naghmeha-ye Sassani (meaning Songs from Sassanid era,) with Shahram Nazeri and Feyz Bashipour. He has just played the Dohol (an Iranian folk percussion) and the Daf in this album.
- 98's Concert 1998, with Shahram Nazeri and Kamkars Ensemble, the anniversary of Hafez' Birthday, live from Shiraz. He has just played the Setar in this album.
- Mystified 90's, with Shahram Nazeri and Kaykhosro Pournazeri (Shams Ensemble). He has just played the Daf in this album.