Who? Sepand Dadbeh (26)
From? Teheran, Iran
Studies? Ud (Turkish music, Master)
What? Belongs to the 10 per cent none-EU/EES students at Codarts.
This year, you started at Codarts. What did you do before?
“I did a Bachelor programme in music at the University of Teheran and then went to work as a professional musician. I gave many concerts, both in Iran and in Europe. Two years ago, I started an intercultural project with an ensemble. Iran has many languages. The official language is Persian (Farsi), which is understood and spoken by everyone and is also the official language in education, literature, and the media. In addition, there is a great variety of other languages, and cultures, thanks to the immigrants from neighbouring countries such as Turkey, Afghanistan, and Iraq. All these influences, plus those from the West, we try to integrate in our music – it takes you on a journey, from the south of Spain to Iran. What we do is mixing cultures. No, I don’t call it fusion.”
What made you decide to pick up a study again?
“In order to further develop my project, I want to learn a new language: how can I present my ideas in a contemporary fashion, play my music in a contemporary way? Music is quite different from visual art. You can hang a painting in a museum for everyone to look at at any time, but music only exists at the moment when it is being played. My instrument, the ud, is in many cultures what the piano is in Western classical music. I want to try and interpret my roots in a new way.”
And why did you choose Codarts?
“If I want to realise my plans, Codarts is really the only choice. The variety in study programmes, all the people of different nationalities here, make it a unique institute. Also, my instrument, the ud, is one of the main subject instruments here. Codarts has so many possibilities… Many more than I had expected… It’s almost confusing, ha ha. Yes, studying abroad is expensive. My parents are paying for the first semester, but then I have to start earning some money. How? By teaching, by performing. I still have to look into the possibilities. By the way, I applied here together with my ensemble – my sister and cousin – and all three of us were admitted.”
What is your favourite spot in Rotterdam?
“The canals here have strips of grass on both sides. I like that. When I’m on my bicycle on Westersingel, I feel happy. I feel that I’m alive.”
Codarts to me is…
“… as a musician: a wonderful diversity that allows for a dialogue with many cultures. I will certainly be promoting Codarts in Iran.”