I watched most of the Norooz specials BBC Persian, Manoto TV and VOA Persian broadcasted immediately before and after the start of the Persian New Year.
The BBC had a very well-planned program, filled with live performances by new and old Iranian and Tajik artists and interesting recorded bits of video containing Norooz messages and themes. The network's popular arts and music anchor, Behzad Bolour made a very energetic presentation of the program's stellar lineup.
Manoto TV’s consistent advance toward capturing the hearts and the ratings of Farsi-speaking audiences worldwide continued this Norooz with their well-planned and very well-executed specials such as a nostalgic concert that brought back the Turkish singer, Emel Sayin for a rare performance of Farsi songs with Anooshirvan Rohani. To be sure, judging by the immense popularity of their weekly programming in Iran, these guys know a thing or two about their audience.
The worst Norooz programming came from Voice of America’s Persian service, where despite much promotion by the station’s Shabahang program on the nights leading to the show, 12 hours of very poorly planned and unprofessional musical performances by mostly unknown artists was a major disappointment. When the show’s host asked Arash Sobhani, who had planned the musical programming with other members from his musical band, Kiosk, about the lineup, he said that he had planned “a very special project with the very best musicians”, which, unfortunately, were anything but! Sattar, the star of the program, provided the highlight of the show. The audience had to endure out of tune voices of the rest of the singers such as Shahrzad Sepanlou and Mr. Sobhani himself, screaming songs they had not practiced and did not know how to sing! With twelve hours of nothing, saram raft o hoselam sar raft! Very un-Noroozi indeed!
It appears that today BBC Persian has not only excelled in its news and analysis programming, it continues to recognize the rhythm and interests of the Iranian audiences better than any other Farsi-speaking medium.
Excerpts from the BBC Persian’s Norooz Program: http://www.bbc.co.uk/persian/iran/2012/03/120323_l...
Excerpts from Manoto TV’s Norooz Program.
Excerpts from the VOA Persian’s Norooz Program: http://www.voanews.com/persian/news/special-report...
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