TEHRAN – Iranian actor and director Mohsen Hosseini is working on a performance that criticizes the elimination of Persian gardens from urban spaces.
Over the past two decades, many Persian gardens on the outskirts of towns and urban areas have dried up and have been replaced by new housing estates.
He plans to stage the tentatively named performance âThe Fall of the Persian Gardenâ at the Risheh Gallery in Tehran during the fall.
âFor a long time I have been concerned about the issue of the Persian garden; these gardens which were located in the north of Tehran and other cities, and gradually dried up and were replaced by crowded streets and residential towers, âHosseini told the Persian service of the MNA on Sunday.
The show will be staged on poems by the French poet Charles Baudelaire and the Persian poet Sohrab Sepehri.
Bridging the gap between Eastern and Western cultures is the hallmark of Hosseini’s performances.
He conducted âForugh of Sarah Pinaâ at the Nazerzadeh Kermani Hall of the Iranshahr Theater Complex in September 2017 to remember the Persian poet Forugh Farrokhzad, the English playwright Sarah Kane and the German choreographer Pina Bausch.
âThis piece praises love and art, and is also based on works by Forugh Farrokhzad, Sarah Kane and Pina Bausch,â Hosseini said.
âI always have the greatest respect for these three lady artists and my works have always been under their influence. These three ladies were also legends during their lifetime and their works were distinctly feminine, âhe noted.
Earlier in February 2016, he directed “West-East Divan” at the City Theater complex in Tehran based on the work of the same title by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe.
The Hosseini troupe was invited by the German Goethe-Institut in 2018 to perform the play in Weimar and Frankfurt.
“West-East Divan” contains poems, notes and essays by the German poet, playwright, novelist and philosopher.
Inspired by Hafez’s Divan (c. 1325-1389), Goethe (1749-1832) mingles his own character with that of the Persian poet, who was familiar with Koranic and theological subjects.
âWest-East Divanâ was first translated into Persian by Shojaeddin Shafa in 1949. There are other translations of the book by Kurosh Safavi and Mahmud Haddadi.
Haddadi’s interpretation of the book was reissued in 2011.
Photo: Actor-director Mohsen Hosseini and his company perform “West-East Divan” at Charsu Hall of the City Theater Complex in Tehran on February 4, 2016 (Iran Theater)
MMS / YAW