Rock Concerts Banned at Tehran Music Festival, Azadi Tower

The public relations office of the Azadi Tower Art Complex (formerly known as Shahyad) has announced that the venue will not host any rock concerts until further notice. The decision will deprive all independent rock bands of the only venue available for showcasing their music. These groups will also be unable to perform at the “Freedom and Music” festival that runs from December 9 to 22 in Tehran.

Festival organizers have reportedly sent letters to all rock groups that were due to perform at the venue, asking them to stop their online ticket sales for the event.

Alireza Ahmadzadeh, a member of the “Badzang” rock band from Mashhad, capital of the northeastern province of Khorasan Razavi, told ILNA (Iranian Labor News Agency): “We received the news last night. The organizers have reportedly canceled all future rock concerts at the venue following inappropriate behavior by some music fans at the event.”

Of the 16 rock groups that were scheduled to perform in the festival, organizers have only allowed two bands, “Shahriar Masroor” and “Madar,” to appear on stage.

Speaking to the Iranian music website “Musicema” (, Farshad Ramezani, the leader of the rock band “Degardis,” said: “The disorderly conduct of a small group of so-called music fans has prompted the festival organizers to cancel all rock concerts. Rock bands have paid the price for other people’s bad behavior.”

It is worth mentioning that the Ministry of Culture and Islamic Guidance had issued permits to all 16 rock bands to perform at the festival.


Translated from Persian by Fardine Hamidi