Freedom to Create Concert & Conversation: Mahsa Vahdat & Sholeh Wolpé

Saturday, September 7, 2019 @ 3:00pm - 4:30pm
SOLD OUT 2019-09-07 3:00pm 2019-09-07 4:30pm America/New_York Freedom to Create Concert & Conversation: Mahsa Vahdat & Sholeh Wolpé 40 W. North Avenue, Pittsburgh PA 15212 Alphabet City

This event is SOLD OUT! Please contact us at 412-435-1110 between 9a-5p, Mon-Fri to learn about our waitlist policy.


Our annual forum on freedom of expression features three distinguished artists: Iranian singer and human rights advocate Mahsa Vahdat in conversation with Iranian-American poet and playwright Sholeh Wolpé, accompanied by renowned harpist Bridget Kibbey.

As a female soloist, Mahsa Vadat is only permitted to perform for all-female audiences in Iran, which she has refused to do. Vahdat will perform, exhibiting her astonishing range that spans from acclaimed collaborations with the experimental contemporary Kronos Quartet to a capella settings of the poems of Rumi in a classical Persian style. Following Vahdat’s performance, Sholeh Wolpé will read her writing followed by a conversation in which the two artists discuss the importance of creative free expression globally.

Mahsa Vahdat is a prominent performer of Persian vocal music and strong advocate of freedom of expression in music. A dedicated singer and advocate in her artistic cause, her career has given a deeper knowledge about Iranian poetry and music to large audiences in Europe, America, Asia, Oceania and Africa. Vahdat is unable to perform in Iran because of restrictions placed on the female solo voice following the Islamic Revolution of 1979 in Iran, she and her sister, Marjan Vahdat, have continuous contact with a large audience who appreciates their art, both in Iran and abroad. www.mahsavahdat.net

Sholeh Wolpé is an Iranian-born poet, writer and literary translator. Her performances, solo or in collaboration with musicians and artists, have been hailed by audiences as “mesmerizing.” The Inaugural Author in Residence at UCLA in 2018, she is the recipient of a 2014 PEN Heim, 2013 Midwest Book Award and 2010 Lois Roth Persian Translation prize as well as artist fellowship and residencies in the U.S., Mexico, Spain, Australia and Switzerland. Sholeh’s literary work includes five collections of poetry, several plays, three books of translations, and three anthologies. She has taught poetry and literary translation at UCLA and University of Maine’s Stonecoast MFA program in the United States. Sholeh travels internationally as a performing poet, writer and public speaker. www.sholehwolpe.com

Bridget Kibbey is a winner of a prestigious Avery Fisher Career Grant, a Salon de Virtuosi SONY Recording Grant, graduate of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center’s Bowers Program, Premiere Prix at the Journées de les Harpes Competition in Arles, France, a winner of Concert Artists Guild, and the Juilliard School’s Peter Mennin Prize for Artistic Excellence and LeadershipMs. Kibbey‘s solo performances have been broadcast on NPR’s Performance Today, New York’s WQXR, WNYC’s Soundcheck, WETA’s Front Row Washington, WRTI’s Crossover, and on television in A&E’s Breakfast with the Arts.  Most recently Bridget was named “Best in Studio 2018” by WQXR for her performance of her own adaptation of J.S. Bach’s Toccata and Fugue, live on air. www.BridgetKibbey.com


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Event Details

September 7, 2019 @ 3:00pm - 4:30pm
40 W. North Avenue, Pittsburgh PA 15212

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