Azeri Love Song
Debuts in New York
The Melodia Women's Choir of New York
City performed Tofig Guliyev's soulful love song, "Your
Beauty Won't Last Forever" [Sana Da Galmaz] in a program
of song entitled "Shout Sister Shout!" at St. Peters
Church, 346 West 20th Street, between 8th and 9th Avenue, in
Manhattan on Saturday, May 5, 2007. Sopranist Naila Aziz arranged
the piece for choir and was featured as soloist. Both Naila and
the choir, as well, performed the song in Azeri. This was the
U.S. premiere for this song as performed by an all-women's choir
and as a song performed by English speakers in Azeri.
Left: Naila Aziz
The lyrics of this love song were written
by Azerbaijani poet Rasul Reza (1910-1981) and the music was
composed by Tofig Guliyev (1917-2000). The piece has become one
of the most favorite Azerbaijani love songs created in the Soviet
Era. The piano score for Tofig Guliyev's "Sana da Galmaz"
can be found in Azerbaijan International, AI 3.4 (Winter 1995),
Left: The Melodia Women's Choir of New
York performed Tofig Guliyev's soulful love song, "Your
Beauty Won't Last Forever" (Sana da Galmaz) on Saturday,
May 5, 2007. Solo performer was sopranist Naila Aziz.
The late Tofig Guliyev was famous for his classic melodies and
songs, and was one of the most celebrated contemporary composers
of Azerbaijan. His works have been performed by Azerbaijan's
foremost vocalists such as Bulbul (1897-1961), Rashid Behbudov
(1915-1988) and Shovkat Alakbarova (1922-1993). Tofig was one
of the founders of the Jazz movement in Azerbaijan during the
1940s and served as President of the Composers' Union of Azerbaijan
Melodia Women's Choir is an ensemble of 32 singers who explore,
create and perform music for women's voices. Melodia's repertoire
is an eclectic mix of rarely performed classical and contemporary
works, including new commissions.
The Guliyev piece was part of a larger program of song entitled
"Shout Sister, Shout" conducted by Cynthia Powell which
featured Girl Groups from the 12th to 21st Centuries.
Naila Aziz is at home in both classical and folkloric repertoire.
A native of Baku, Azerbaijan, she graduated from the Azerbaijan
State University of Culture and Art, with honors in musical theatre.
As a composer and performer, Naila has participated in many competitions
and festivals in Moscow, Tbilisi, Yerevan (Armenia), Abinsk (Russia),
Gelinger (Belgium) and Vitebsk (Belarus). She currently works
with Danzas Españolas in New York City, where she combines
her knowledge of Western classical music and Eastern traditional
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