Kayhan Kalhor is one of the greatest living masters of the Kamancheh, a 3 or 4 stringed Persian spiked fiddle and ancient predecessor to the modern cello. Kayhan performs around the world extensively as a soloist and collaborator with a wide variety of musicians, including Yo-Yo Ma and the Silk Road ensemble.
The kamancheh is an incredibly soulful, deeply expressive instrument that can sound like the human voice or a woodwind instrument in the right hands. Talking with Kayhan gave me a wonderful opportunity to explore the world of Persian classical music, a field that is completely new to me, with an outside perspective that I imagine might be similar to someone who doesn’t know anything about Western classical music. What should I be listening for? What are the elements helpful to understand so that I can gain a deeper appreciation for the beautiful sounds I hear?
Kayhan’s website: http://www.kayhankalhor.net/
Silk Road Project: https://www.silkroadproject.org/