Jashn-e Tirgan 2016 - Cambridge Past

Friday, July 1, 2016 ,
8:00 PM - 9:30 PM
- Cambridge, United Kingdom
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You are cordially invited to Jashn-e Tirgan celebrations with Persian classical and folk music, organised the SOAS Iranian music society. In this concert you will hear songs and instrumental pieces from Iran and Afghanistan.
Performers:
Peyman Heydarian [santur, daf]
Elaha Soroor [voice]
Ali Torshizi [tonbak]
And guest musicians of the SOAS Iranian band
Date: Friday 1 July 2016
Time: Doors open from 7:30pm. Concert starts at 8.00pm
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About Jashn-e Tirgan:
The Tirgan Festival similar to all major Iranian festivals follows the solar calendar system of day reckoning. It is celebrated on the start of Summer season about 1st of July, the longest day of the year.
The name "TIR" has roots in the ancient Avestan name "Tishtar", the Sirius star. Sirius(dog star) was also known to the ancient Egyptians indicating the inundation of the river Nile.Today,the closest planet to the sun is known as "Tir" (Attarod, Mercury). Due to its closeness to the sun it suffers extreme temperature conditions.
All the Iranian festivals have also a semi-historical legend attributed to them. The hero of Tirgan is Arash, the bow champion "Kamangir". The story is found in the ancient Avestan books and has gone since through many variations. The legend could be summarised as follows:
During the reign of the Iranian king Manouchehr, some of the Iranian land was occupied by the Turanians. As the result of drought, a long famine struck the land of Iran. Eventually, negotiation took place between Manouchehr and the Turanian king Afrasiab. It was agreed to terminate the occupation conditionally. The two sides agreed whatever land falls within the range of a bowman's shot should be returned to Iran. The Iranians to prove their worth to the Turanians chose the best archer available, Arash. On the agreed day, Arash climbed a certain mutually agreed mountain near the disputed landmass and fired his heroic arrow (tir also means arrow in Persian). The heroic shot traveled beyond belief and the champion due to exhaustion collapsed and died on the spot. The locations given in the Avesta cannot be ascertained correctly, the landing place of the arrow was apparently somewhere beyond the Oxus (Amoo Darya) river. It is said that after this act of heroism, justice was restored, rain followed and the long suffering of drought disappeared.
Few days before the Tirgan Festival, the Iranians wear a multi colour thread round their wrists. On Tirgan day they visit parks and pastures to celebrate and splash water on each other. The threads are thrown to the streams as a libation to wash the past sufferings away.

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