After a world-wide search for the most talented Persian vocalist and instrumentalist, the Star Musician competition chose its Top 10 finalists who traveled the world to perform at the finals June 9, held at the spectacular 2,000-seat Saban Theatre in Beverly Hills, California.
Star Musician judges included pop icon Andy Madadian, legendary producer Farokh ” Elton” Ahi, Grammy-nominated guitarist Ardeshir Farah, renowned lyricist Paksima Zakipour, and highly-sought after director Siros Kerdouni. These accomplished judges, along with the help of the voting public, chose the final two winners of the night.
Five vocalists and five instrumentalists performed live Saturday night in hopes of becoming the 2012 Star Musician winners! One vocalist and one instrumentalist were chosen as the winner in each category and as their prize, each will record an album and star in his/her own professional music video, directed by Siros Kerdouni!
The evening also included live performances by Pyruz, Farshid Amin, Shani, Kiyan Pasha and Max Amini.
The finalists in the vocalist category were Nima Ghajarieh from Stockholm, Sweden, Parvin Arjmandi from Akron, Ohio, Fereydoon Kharrazi from Los Angeles, California, Javad Jarrahi from Great Falls, Virginia, Sepanta Soroush from Paris, France, and Salma Attaranasi from Ottowa Canada.
The finalists in the instrumental category were Ramin Farhad from Irvine, Califirnia, Yara Amir Bahonar from Tehran, Iran, Mastaneh Nikravesh from San Diego, California, Amir Mosleh from Toronto Canada and Saeed Amini from Yazd, Iran.
Unfortunately due to visa issues, the two finalists from Iran –both in the instrumental category–could not compete in person and did so through video…But that did not seem to hurt their chances as one (Saeed Amini) came in second place and the other, Yara Amir Bahonar, a clear live crowd favorite for his incredibly-fast paced violin play, came in first.
|Yara Amir Bahonar competes via video from Iran — and wins the Instrumental category|
The winner in the vocalist category was Sepanta Soroush with Nima Ghajarieh coming in second. Despite not placing in the top three, Javad Jarrahi was cheered so loudly by the crowd, that pop icon Andy asked him to play at his concerts in the future!
|Sepanta Soroush reacts in surprised joy upon hearing announcement that she beat out Nima Ghajarieh|
Star Musician was started in 2005 by Iman Huschmand who co-hosted the festivities Saturday night with Tehran SoParvaz Jr.
|Saeed Amini performs via video from Iran|