From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Parissa (aka Parisa), Persian Classical Vocalist (Singer) and Persian Vocal Music Master.jpg
Parisa, 2015 (photo by Saghar Barekat)
Background information
Born (1950-03-16) March 16, 1950 (age 69)
OriginTonekabon, Iran
GenresClassical Persian music
Occupation(s)Vocalist, singer, musician
Years active1960s to present

Fātemeh Vā'ezi (Persian: فاطمه واعظی‎, born March 16, 1950 in Tonekabon, Iran), better known as Parisā (Persian: پریسا‎), is a Persian classical singer, Avaz master, and one of the foremost female vocalists from Iran.[1][2]

Early life and musical training[edit]

Parisa in the 1970s

After finishing high school, with an emphasis on Persian literature, she started her musical work under the supervision of the renowned Persian Radif teacher, Mahmoud Karimi, a highly respected teacher of classical Persian music whose vast knowledge of the ancient repertoire was fundamental to her career.

Karimi once commented: "Parisa is my most promising pupil and she can sing all the modes with the skill of re-interpretation or improvisation necessary to correctly perform Iranian music".[3]


In the early 1970s, Parisa was training intensely with vocal master Mahmud Karimi at the Honarestan-e Musiqi-ye Meli (National Music Academy) and occasionally performed at the Ministry of Culture's Rudaki Hall. Fulbright scholar of Iranian music Lloyd Miller was also studying with master Karimi in the men's vocal class at the Music Academy. One day master Karimi invited Miller to visit the women's class and Miller was stunned by Parisa's excellent vocal skills and decided to do everything possible to help her rise to the top of the Tehran music scene. As a music writer in most publications in Tehran, Miller began to continually praise everything about Parisa, while he was also writing relatively negative reviews about some of the westernized pop-oriented concerts presented by the Ministry of Culture at Rudaki Hall. Miller was PR person for the Center for Preservation and Propagation of Iranian Music, directed by grand master Daryush Safvat.

Since Parisa was funded by a scholarship from the Ministry of Culture, she could not be a member of the NIRT Center until she worked off her scholarship by performing for the Ministry. Miller was saddened by this situation but one day was invited to Rudaki Hall for a meeting with an official from the Ministry. At the meeting Miller was asked what it would take for him to stop writing scathing negative articles about the Ministry for their "inappropriate modern and pop music efforts". According to him, if the Ministry would "allow Parisa to join the Center's cadre of rising young masers of totally traditional music," he would "only write about the good concerts at the Ministry like western classical music or other harmless efforts." The next day when Miller went to the Center he was shocked to see Parisa sitting waiting for an interview with master Safvat. She was consequently immediately accepted and began her career as one of Iran's foremost vocalists.

Meanwhile, Miller had applied to be the A and R person for CBS Iran but was rejected in favor of Marsel, a popular modernized piano personality. Miller was told he was rejected because he had an agenda and couldn't be fair in his music selections. Miller was not discouraged and at a party soon after he befriended the Marsel and enticed him to come to Dr. Safvat's Center to hear the most amazing vocalist and instrumentalists in the whole country. Marsel was immediately converted to Parisa and soon produced three cassette tapes which hit the top of the music charts in Tehran. Parisa and the Center's musicians offered many concerts in Iran and also at the famed annual Shiraz Art Festival. She also performed at festivals in Europe and Japan.

After the 1979 revolution, Parisa was no longer allowed to perform in public although she should have been the one lady vocalist who would have been accepted except that other less appropriate singers would try to get back their claim to fame. So she devoted herself to her family and giving private lessons.[4]

In 1980, she was again invited to teach traditional Persian music at the Center, which she continued to do until 1995. Since then, she has performed at music festivals and major concert halls throughout the world with many prominent groups and musicians, including Dastan Ensemble, Dariush Tala'i, and Hossein Omoumi.[5]

Parisa currently lives in Tehran, Iran.

Concerts and tours[edit]

Although still based in Iran, for the last 20 years she has been able to tour widely performing Persian and Sufi music in Europe and the US and has recorded several albums to date. Here is a list of her activities up to 2012:

2012 (May–June) Tour: West USA and Canada

with Hamnavazan Ensemble

2010 Concert: Santiago, Sweden

performing at the festival of Sacred sounds

Iman Vaziri (Tar), Dara Afraz (Tombak)

2009 Concert: Uppsala, Sweden

performing at the Uppsala Sacred Music Festival

Iman Vaziri (Tar), Dara Afraz (Tombak) and Ehsan Zabihifar (Kamancheh)

2009 Concert: Lombrana, Santander, Spain (August 8)

performing at the Santander International Festival

Iman Vaziri (Tar), Dara Afraz (Tombak)

2009 Concert: Asia Society, New York

performing at the Muslim Voices festival, Asia Society

Iman Vaziri (Tar), Dara Afraz (Tombak)

2008 Concert: Paris, Rennes & Dusseldorf

Performing the expanded version of the project Simplicity with the company of Kamancheh in Dusseldorf.

Iman Vaziri (Tar), Ali Rahimi (Tombak) and Ehsan Zabihifar (Kamancheh)

2008 Concert: Italy and Spain

Florence (Italy): Festival MUSICA DEI PAPOLI

Barcelona (Spain): QADAR Festival

Performing the album Simplicity and a new one-hour program

2007 Concert: Brussels, Belgium: Female Voices Festival

Performing the album Simplicity

with Iman Vaziri (Tar) and Ali Rahimi (Tombak)

Some master classes and workshops were included in this festival.

2007 Album released: Simplicity - Parissa and Iman Vaziri
2007 Concert: Performing the Gol-e Behesht in the Fes Festival

Fes, Morocco

with Dastan Ensemble

2006 Tour: USA and Canada, with Dastan Ensemble:

Montreal, Ottawa, Toronto, Vancouver,

New York, Atlanta, Dallas, Chicago, Ann Arbor, Michigan, Orange County, Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Diego

2006 Concert: Madrid, Spain

Performing the album Shoorideh with Dastan Ensemble

2005 Album released: Gol-e Behesht - Parissa and Ensemble Dastan

European tour with Dastan Ensemble and joining the Tar and Setar Seminar in the Netherlands.

Venice, Rome, Freiberg, Koln, Oslo

2004 Concert: European tour in Berlin, Paris, London with Dastan Ensemble
2003 (Apr-Jun) Album released: Shoorideh - Parissa and Ensemble Dastan

Tour: Canada and USA, with Dastan Ensemble

Toronto, Montreal, Ottawa, Vancouver, Seattle, Portland, Orange County, San Francisco, New York, New Haven, Washington D.C., Cleveland, Chicago, Atlanta

2002 (Oct-Dec) Tour: Europe, with Dastan Ensemble:

Berlin (SFB Grosser Sendesaal), Hamburg (Musikhalle),

Kobenhavem (Amager Bio), Stockholm (Folkets Hus)

Goteborg (Universitet / Astisten), Helsingborg (Dunkers Kulturhus), Antwerpen, Amsterdam, Utrecht, Oslo, Frankfurt (HR Sendesaal), Giessen (Kongresshalle), Munchen (Goethe Institute, Freiburg (Historisches Kaufuaus), London (Queen Elizabeth Hall), Koln, Heidelberg (Kongresshaus Stadthalle)

2002 (Sep-Oct) Album released: Tale of Love II | Nava

Tour: USA, with Daryush Talai:

New York (Asia Society and Museum), Hawaii (Honolulu Academy of Arts), Berkley (First Congregational Church), Los Angeles (Wadsworth Theatre, Persian Arts Society)

2002 (Jun-Jul) Festival: The Silk Road, Washington D.C., USA

36th Annual Smithsonian Folk Life Festival

performing with Daryush Talai (Tar)[6]

2001 (Nov) Concert: Switzerland: Voix Sacrées du Monde, Lausanne [7]

with Behdad Shahideh (Tar), Dara Afraz (Daf)

2000 (Apr) Concert: London: Queen Elizabeth Hall

with Behdad Shahideh (Tar), and her son, Dara Afraz for the first time. He accompanied the group with Daf.

1999 (Oct) Festival: "FestKoncert" of Munchen, Germany
1999 (Aug) Album released: Tale of Love I | Esfahan

Concert: Voix d ete en Creuse, France, with Hossein Omoumi

1999 (Feb) Tour: Australia

Sydney (University of Macquarie), Melbourne (University of Latrobe), Adelaide (Theatre of Royal), Perte (University of Perte)

1998 Tour: USA and Canada

with Hossein Omoumi (Ney), Pejman Haddadi (Tombak), Saam (Daf)

New York (Symphony Space), Philadelphia (Rosemont College, Lawrence Hall), Tampa (University of Southern Florida - Cooper’s Hall), Miami: Ash Auditorium (Hyatt Regency Hotel), Washington DC (George Washington University Lisner Auditorium, Atlanta (Emory University), San Diego (Museum of Contemporary Art), Seattle (University of Washington- HUB Auditorium), San Francisco (Palace of Fine Art), Los Angeles (UCLA Wadsworth Theater), Portland (Scottish Rite Center),

Vancouver (Centennial Theatre), Toronto (Seneca College), Montreal (Dalle Brebouf College)

Later the albums Tale of Love I and II were released from these performances.

1998 (Sep-Oct) Album released: Tale of Love (Medley)

Festival: Women In Traditions, invited by MultiCulti inc.

London (Queen Elizabeth Hall), with Hossein Omoumi (Ney) and Saam (Daf)

1997 Festival: e Festival de L´ Été à Bourges, France

Invited for an event entitled "Nuit des Voix de Femme".

1996 Concert: Royal Festival Hall II, London

with Hossein Omoumi (Ney), Saam (Daf)

1996 Concert: Théâtre de la Ville, Paris

with Hossein Omoumi (Ney), Saam (Daf)

1996 Concerts: Salle Oliver Messiaen and Radio Denmark

Invited by Radio France.

with Hossein Omoumi (Ney), Saam (Daf)

The disc Tale of Love was released from these performances later.

1996 Festival: Festival des Voix Sacreés, France

Three vocalists were invited to represent the vocal tradition of their respective religions: Jewish, Christian and Islamic, at "l´Arsenal de Metz".

1995 Album released: Baz Amadam

Series of concerts in England, France, Germany, Sweden, Switzerland and the Netherlands after 15 years of silence.

1979-1995 Unable to publicly perform after the Iranian revolution. Devoted this time to research and teaching the vocal Radif contributed to the publication The Art of Persian Music, by Jean During and published by Mage publications, and the accompanying CD: The Anthology of Persian Music.
1978 Concerts: Invited to attend the "Asian Traditional Performing Arts Festival" in Japan under the auspices of Japan Foundation. The main emphasis was placed on the vocal music of Burma, India, Iran, Mongolia and Japan. The official reports of the series of seminars and workshops has been documented in a book entitled Musical Voices of Asia published by the Japan Foundation (1980). Eleven 16mm movies, an album of three LP records, and an accompanying CD entitled Classical Vocal Art of Persian were also produced from this event.
1975, 1976, 1977 Concerts: The Shiraz Arts Festival, performing some of the most groundbreaking and memorable concerts along with important young musicians at the time.
1975-1981 Vocalist and instructor at the Center for Preservation and Propagation of Iranian Music. Published numerous recordings by CBS Records.
1973 Concerts: 40 concerts in 40 cities in France to introduce the art of Persian classical music.
1970-1975 Vocalist in the Ministry of Arts and Culture, performing throughout Iran, Pakistan and Afghanistan.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "ParissaDastan Ensemble". Retrieved 2017-03-31.
  2. ^ "Meet Parissa - the "angel of Iranian music"". euronews. 2016-10-06. Retrieved 2017-03-31.
  3. ^ "Iran Chamber Society: Iranian Music: Parissa". Retrieved 2017-03-31.Music and Song in Persia, Lloyd Miller
  4. ^ Music and Song in Persia & Sufi, Saint and Swinger by Dr. Lloyd Miller; also Miller's long personal affiliation the Center
  5. ^ "ParissaDastan Ensemble". Retrieved 2017-03-31.
  6. ^
  7. ^
  • Music and Song in Persia, Curzon Press 1999 and The Center for Preservation and Propagation of Iranian Music, Society for Preservation and Propagation of Eastern Arts, (affiliated with National Iranian Radio & Television) Salt Lake City, 1977.


  • Parisa is a popular Persian name for women. It literally means "fairy-like", or "face of an angel".

External links[edit]

Fatemeh Vaezi, who later on picked the artistic name of Parissa, was born on March 16, 1950 in Iran. After finishing the high school, with emphasis on Persian Literature,