A vocalist with 12 years of training in traditional Iranian music, Jandaghi spoke to CHRI on January 22, 2018, about discriminatory state policies banning women in Iran from performing on stage except in rare circumstances.
Women in Iran are theoretically allowed to sing for the general public in a choir or as a solo vocalist for a female-only audience, but solo performances are usually very difficult to organize.
According to Jandaghi, female singers are also prohibited from holding solo concerts for female-only audiences in most parts of Iran except Tehran and a few other cities, even though no law explicitly bans them from doing so. If location is not an obstacle, then the financial burden is usually exorbitant.
“It costs so much to hold a concert for a female-only audience that it’s not worth it,” said Jandaghi. “It’s hard enough to sell tickets for a normal concert, let alone one just for women. We have to pay all the costs out-of-pocket.”
“We cannot advertise the concerts anywhere except on Instagram and Telegram,” she added. “All the musicians have to be women, too. Photographers and videographers are banned—even I can’t film the performance.”
A graduate in Iranian vocal studies from the University of Applied Science and Technology in Tehran, Jandaghi produces some income by providing singing lessons.
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