Back to All Events

Niloufar Shiri & Hesam Abedini

  • C: Landing 751 47th Ave San Francisco, CA (map)

Niloufar Shiri and Hesam Abedini’s duo explores a creative intercultural music making by combining the sounds of traditional Iranian and contemporary Western music. Their work reflects on their lives as Iranian-born Americans who have been exploring both Eastern and Western cultures. They established the Sibarg Ensemble in 2008 at the Tehran Music Conservatory as the first university ensemble to combine Iranian and non-Iranian music. Up until that point, no music school or academic institution in Iran maintained an ensemble or orchestra that performed new music composed for traditional Iranian and Western instruments. When the ensemble moved to the United States in 2010, they reformed with tar player Ebrahim Poustinchi, pianist Josh Charney, and bassist Kyle Motl. Their first album Cipher, released in 2018, was sponsored by the Jordan Center for Persian Studies and the Farhang Foundation.

Niloufar, composer, Kamancheh player, and improviser is a graduate of the Tehran Music Conservatory. She received her diploma in the Kamancheh performance. Since 2010, she is studying and researching classical Persian music theory under the direction and supervision of Dr. Hossein Omoumi, at UCI. Niloufar received her bachelor with honor in composition from UCSD where she studied composition with Professors Lei Liang, Katherina Rosenberger, and improvisation with Mark Dresser. Currently, she is pursuing her Ph.D. in integrated composition, Improvisation, and Technology (ICIT) at UCI as a provost Ph.D. fellow. (

Hesam is a performer, composer and improviser residing in Irvine, CA. His work crosses the boundaries between idioms as wide as contemporary music, classical Iranian music and free improvisation. Hesam’s music have been performed by various musicians and ensembles such as, Atlas Ensemble, Del Sol Quartet, Loadbang, New Mexico Contemporary Ensemble and Mark Dresser’s Bass Ensemble. Hesam is the director of the NEA-sponsored Documentary film “From Isfahan to Irvine”. He is a graduate of the Tehran Music Conservatory and holds his B.A. in Music Composition with honors from UCSD. He studied music composition with Dr. Lei Liang, Chinary Ung, Anthony Davis and improvisation with Mark Dresser. Currently, Hesam is pursuing his Ph.D. in Integrated Composition, Improvisation and Technology at UCI as a Provost PhD Fellow under the supervision of Prof. Christopher Dobrian.

Later Event: October 13
Telegraph Quartet