Neyanban, and its Role in the Music of Bushehr

  • Seyed Mohammadreza Beladi

Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis


This study focuses on the musical role of the neyanban in the music of Bushehr. The neyanban, which belongs to the bagpipe family, is an important musical instrument in southern Iran, especially in Bushehr. The music of Bushehr has developed under the influence of a multicultural society. It is therefore influenced by the culture of immigrant ethnic groups, such as Arabs from the Persian Gulf, Africans, and Indians, on the one hand, and other Iranian ethnic groups within the country, such as the Qashqai Turks, the Lors, and the Persian Bandaris, on the other. The neyanban and its music have also undergone physical and musical changes throughout history and in the face of these social and cultural developments, the first phase of this research is to identify the historical status of this instrument in Iran and to compare it with similar instruments in the world. Continuing this approach, an in-depth study was made of how the different parts of neyanban music originated. Contemporary neyanban music is one of the other parts of this study that has been explored. In the final phase of this thesis as practice-based research, I have composed a song to be performed by the Leymer group to show how the musical capacity of other parts of Bushehr's music can be used to make new music for the neyanban. In this research, I employed a qualitative mixed-methods design using primary data (a series of interviews), secondary data (historical records, films, and images) and practice-based research to explore the evolution of the neyanban using phenomenological and symbolic interpretive methods. After examining and presenting various arguments, this research proposes a criterion for determining the origin of some parts of neyanban music. The history of the neyanban worldwide is another achievement of this research, outlined for the first time. The development of the social status of the neyanban and neyanban players and the introduction of Bushehr music by the neyanban outside their geographical and cultural borders and even in Iran shows the increasing importance of this instrument in the music of Bushehr and beyond in modern times. One of the outcomes of this thesis is that I have endeavoured to illustrate how social and cultural evolutions have affected the physical structure and music of this ancient instrument, and that this instrument is still alive and functioning at the heart of society. Neyanban, Music, Culture, Iran, Bushehr, Ethnomusicology, Leymer Folk Music and Dance Group of Bushehr
Date of Award26 Feb 2024
Original languageEnglish
SupervisorJan Herbst (Main Supervisor) & Rupert Till (Co-Supervisor)

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