Dr. Shahkar Bineshpajooh

Persian Michael Buble cover, shiny suit, long hair, the fact that he sings the words “pedar-sukhteyeh bisharaf” in a formal setting of white people while backed by a freaking philharmonic orchestra, AND he’s a doktor? I think I’m in love.

More here. (Thanks Maman!)

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Maz Jobrani at TED

Maz Jobrani talks at TED about being Iranian-American, travel, casting, comedy, etc.

(Thanks, Yogurtsoda!)

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Have Iranian-American Weddings Gotten Too Divooneh?

Yes:

As guests enjoyed hors d’oeuvres outside the banquet hall, the bride was placed in a glass coffin. The groom fitted on a white half-mask. Then, the carefully planned Phantom of the Opera theme devolved into chaos.

Condensation formed inside the coffin as guests delayed filtering in. When the groom finally took his cue to present the bride, the lid wouldn’t budge. Before long, he was slamming the glass trying to break through as the bride wailed inside, her makeup running down her face. It would be an hour before she was finally freed.

You know things have gotten way too out of hand when even the king of Persian pop Shahbal Shabpareh (whose anecdote is above) thinks we need to calm it down on the wedding front. Read the whole story in the LA Times.

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Asie Mohtarez

Asie Mohtarez – Brooklyn-based Perzhian girl comedian with a solid Tumblr and a Bollywood obsession – is awesome and funny. Everything she writes about Persianity is totally right and honest and hilarious. Somebody give this girl a TV development deal already.

Here is her stand-up:

Here is a tour of her Brooklyn apartment:

Here’s the Thing – Episode 9: Asie Mohtarez, comedian from miskamagic on Vimeo.

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Kubideh Kitchen

Kubideh Kitchen is an Iranian take-out restaurant that serves kubideh in freshly baked barbari bread with onion, mint, and basil. Developed in collaboration with members of the Pittsburgh Iranian community, the sandwich is packaged in a custom-designed wrapper that includes interviews with Iranians both in Pittsburgh and Iran on subjects ranging from Iranian food and poetry to the current political turmoil.

Link.

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Jasmin Darznik – “My Mother, Her Secrets”

Really nice essay from Jasmin Darznik (about her maman) in the NYT. Snip:

It’s difficult to imagine our mothers as women with stories and selves that exist separately from ours. So firmly do we hold onto the mothers of our memories that even as adults faced with some irrefutable proof of their lives before and apart from us, we still insist on our own versions of their lives.

More here.

More on Jasmin Darznik here.

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Coming in June – Document: Iranian-Americans in Los Angeles

Maryam Mottahedeh, poet (photo by Arash Saedinia)

Poet Maryam Mottahedeh, photographed by Arash Saedinia

Opening June 6 at UCLA’s Fowler Museum, “Document: Iranian-Americans in Los Angeles” is the first big photo project documenting L.A.’s Iranian-Americans since Irangeles (which is an amazing book, but nearly 20 years old and no longer in print, time for an update!). The exhibit, produced/curated by Amy Malek, will show the work of four Iranian-American photographers who shot a very diverse list of hamvatans – doctors and engineers, natch, but also poets, artists, cops, and moms – which should make for a super-cool show.

From the release:

“In cultivating this collaborative project,” said guest curator Amy Malek, “I wanted to examine documentation as a representational process by offering four Iranian American photographers’ perspectives on who we are, stressing the importance of including multiple voices in documenting our own Los Angeles communities.”
Sounds pretty awesome, right? The Fowler is also putting together some really interesting opening day stuff that sounds like it will provide some helpful context for these images. Details:
Sunday, June 6, noon–6 p.m.
Opening Day Programs
“Document: Iranian-Americans in Los Angeles”
A panel of scholars will discuss issues relating to the Iranian diaspora and visual anthropology. Next, exhibition curator Amy Malek will be joined by the four documentary photographers whose work is featured in the exhibition — Farhad Parsa, Arash Saedinia, Parisa Taghizadeh and Ramin Talaie — who will discuss their experiences documenting the everyday lives of second-generation Iranian Americans in Los Angeles. A gallery tour with Malek and a reception follow. Please check www.fowler.ucla.edu for a detailed schedule.
The photos will be on display at the Fowler through August 22 – don’t miss them!

More details:  ‘Document: Iranian-Americans in Los Angeles’ opens June 6 at Fowler Museum at UCLA

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Women Without Men – LA Screenings

Shirin Neshat’s highly anticipated film (an adaptation of Shahrnush Parsipur’s writing) opens in Los Angeles today. Details here.

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Production company wants LA Persians for a new reality show – “The Persian Version”

This has “hot mess” written all over it and… I can’t wait?

Via Gawker, the press release:

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Doron Ofir Casting
April 7, 2010

Hollywood, CA (APRIL 7th 2010) Yes it’s true! From the team that brought you MTV’s phenomenon “Jersey Shore” it’s The Persian Version!

Doron Ofir Casting is seeking Los Angeles proud Persian-Americans who rule the Hollywood nightlife and own Beverly Hills.

“Its time to show the world that being Persian-American is a celebration of the American dream” says Doron Ofir Executive Casting Director.

So if you are at least 21 years old, appear younger than thirty and are outrageous, outspoken and a proud Persian-American, then Doron Ofir Casting and 495 Productions, the team who brought you Jersey Shore, are looking for you!

Casting is already underway, to get on the A-list, email us at: Persianversioncasting@gmail.com

MEDIA CONTACT:
Shaggy Bajrami
Doron Ofir Casting
Phone: 323.203.1334
Email: shaggycasting@gmail.com

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Ramesh and Floppy Persian Dancing of the 1970s

I like Ramesh – she has a nice masculine (lesbian?) vibe, a good voice, and awesome stage presence. That afro alone is crazy-inspiring.

One thing that gets me every time I watch this video is the girl at 1:36 or so and her super-floppy Gumby dancing. <3 forever.

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