Iranian singer Hamid Askari and his band performed a concert on January 30 in Milad Tower Music, a well-known venue in Tehran. However, they won’t be performing again soon. After that concert, Askari’s music was banned by Iran’s religious authorities because he let his female guitarist, Negin Parsa, sing a solo at the end of a song. In Iran, women don’t have the right to sing alone.
This video, which was posted on Instagram, shows the end of the song in question, during which Parsa sang alone for 12 seconds.
During major concerts in the country, a supervisor from the ministry of culture makes sure that this law is upheld. That was the case during Askari’s concert. Right after Parsa sang, her microphone was taken away. In the video below, you can see that Parsa no longer has a microphone in front of her.
The story might have stopped there but, instead, Askari decided to fight back. He invited Parsa to share his microphone and join him in singing another song.
As a result of this incident, on February 3, Iran's ministry of culture announced that Askari and his band were censored until further notice. They are no longer allowed to broadcast their music or give concerts. On Instagram, Parsa said she wasn’t deterred and that she was sure that she would obtain the right to play music again as that is what is “most important” to her.