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Live Arts | Jamshid Jam Performance

December 17, 20246:00 pm - 7:30 pm

Free with museum admission

ASL and English CART captioning provided

Image of the performers in Jamshid Jam.

Photograph credit: Ramin Roshandel & Jeff Martin.

About the Event

During the closing week of Chicago Works: Maryam Taghavi, the musical duo Jamshid Jam perform a sonic response to the exhibition.

Accompanied by Ramin Roshandel on setar, Jean-François Charles on electronics, and Ritwik Banerji on saxophone, artist Maryam Taghavi narrates a short story from her exhibition text. This first-person narrative offers an intimate glimpse into the conditions of post-war Tehran, focusing on how children’s games reflect the precarity and psychological impact of war.

Consisting of Ramin Roshandel and Jean-François Charles, Jamshid Jam’s improvised performances have been heard on stages across the United States. For this special performance, Roshandel and Charles are joined onstage by Ritwik Banerji.

ASL and English CART captioning are provided for this event.

ASL provided.

About the Performers

Ritwik Banerji is an improviser, experimental ethnographer, and interactive media artist. He has performed and presented his work at an eclectic collection of venues, including Ausland (Berlin), Experimental Intermedia (New York), Khoj International Artists Studios (New Delhi), and most recently at the planetarium of the Federal University of Bahia. In addition to performing on woodwinds and electronics, Banerji has also developed a broad array of interactive music systems ranging from virtual performers of free improvisation to immersive 3D environments navigable through timbral manipulation of live audio signal. He is currently an assistant professor of anthropology at Iowa State University.

Jean-François Charles is Associate Professor of Composition and Digital Media at the University of Iowa. He creates at the crossroads of music and technology. As a clarinetist, he has performed improvised music with many artists, from Maurice Merle to Douglas Ewart and Gozo Yoshimasu. He worked with Karlheinz Stockhausen for the world premiere of Rechter Augenbrauentanz.

Ramin Roshandel is a composer and setar improviser. He grew up in a family surrounded by artists; his luthier dad, his painter uncle, and his setar instructor Farshid Jam had strong influences on him as a teenager. Roshandel worked with the renowned Mohammad Reza Lotfi at Maktab-Khāne-ye Mirzā Abdollāh and won second place in the 7th National Youth Music Festival in Tehran, Iran. As a composer, Roshandel works with indeterminate, improvisatory, and liminal structures to contrast or converge with post- or non-tonal forms. On the one hand he is inspired by Persian music intervals, on the other he is mindful of phenomena such as instability, cultural identity, and communicational language.

Ramin Roshandel and Jean-François Charles have worked on several projects together. Roshandel was the setar soloist for the premiere performances of Charles’s opera Grant Wood in Paris in 2019. They performed together as part of the live soundtrack composed by Charles and Nicolas Sidoroff to the 1923 Hunchback of Notre Dame movie, a commission by FilmScene with premiere performances in November 2023 in Iowa.

As the Jamshid Jam duet, Ramin Roshandel and Jean-François Charles have developed a unique sound combining the traditions of Persian classical music and live electronic music. They have been creating this new shared musical language since their first concert in December 2019. They have been invited to perform in Ames, IA; Chicago, IL; Iowa City, IA; Omaha, NE; New York, NY; Tucson, AZ; and Warrensburg, MO. Their debut album, Jamshid Jam, is available on streaming platforms and CD.



Lead support for the 2023-24 season of MCA Performance and Public Programs is provided by Elizabeth A. Liebman.

Generous support is provided by Ginger Farley and Bob Shapiro, Martha Struthers Farley and Donald C. Farley, Jr. Family Foundation, N.A., Trustee; Susan Manning and Doug Doetsch; Carol Prins and John Hart/The Jessica Fund; and an anonymous donor.

Additional generous support is provided by Diane Kahan and Anne L. Kaplan.

The MCA is a proud member of the Museums in the Park and receives major support from the Chicago Park District.



Lead support is provided by R.H. Defares and Zell Family Foundation.

Major support is provided by DIOR, Susie L. Karkomi and Marvin Leavitt, Robin Loewenberg Tebbe and Mark Tebbe, and Charlotte Cramer Wagner and Herbert S. Wagner III of the Wagner Foundation.

Generous support is provided by the Sandra and Jack Guthman Chicago Works Exhibition Fund.

This exhibition is supported by the Women Artists Initiative, a philanthropic commitment to further equity across gender lines and promote the work and ideas of women artists.

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