Reclaiming melodies from past millennia, reviving the traditional instrument Tanboor, discovering the secrets of Iranian mystical music, creating a whole new style in Iranian music by blending passion, emotion, spirituality, and performance, and the most advanced techniques of composition and performance: these are the hallmarks of the Pournazeri family and the Shams ensemble.
The Shams Ensemble was founded in Iran in 1980, by Kaykhosro Pournazeri – a musicologist who retrieved the spiritual instrument Tanboor from the heart of the Sufi monasteries and introduced it to the world stage.
In addition to their focus on performing Iranian music, the Pournazeris and the Shams Ensemble have been active supporters of other artists. Following the ban on female musicians (after the Islamic revolution of 1978), they have put great effort into returning women to the musical stage. As points of pride, they have nurtured the first female Tanboor players, and after ten years of striving were able to utilize two female vocalists in their work despite the ban on the solo female voice.