6.COM 13.22

The Committee

  1. Takes note that the Islamic Republic of Iran has nominated Music of the Iranian ethnic groups for inscription on the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity, described as follows:

Each of the ethnic groups of Iran enjoys its own language, music, dance and arts forms, which constitute an integral part of Iranian ethnic identity. The music and dances are performed individually or collectively and can be divided into instrumental, performed with wind, string or percussion instruments, and vocal styles accompanied by improvisation. The varieties include lullabies, tales, stories and myths, songs for children’s games, group songs by workers or ceremonial music for religious events, celebrations or mourning. The music is also classifiable as either melodic or rhythmic: the music of the Āzaris, Baluches, Gilān and Turkmen ethnic groups is distinguished by melodic expression of instruments and vocals, while that of Khuzestān, Kurds and Lors is characterized by accompanying percussion. Every ethnic group has instruments specific to it with unique characteristics, such as Baluchi music with dunali (a wind instrument) and qeychak (a bowed lute). Some instruments are shared among ethnic communities highlighting shared cultural roots, such as kamāncheh, a bowed lute popular among Lors, Turkmen and Āzaris. The music is transmitted orally between generations, with hundreds of different kinds of musical instruments made and played by practitioners.

  1. Decides that, from the information provided in nomination file 00589, Music of the Iranian ethnic groups satisfies the criteria for inscription on the Representative List, as follows:

R.5:   With the active participation of concerned communities, experts and non-governmental entities, the music of the Iranian ethnic groups was included in 2010 in the National Intangible Cultural Heritage Inventory of the Islamic Republic of Iran maintained by the Iranian Cultural Heritage, Handicrafts and Tourism Organization.

  1. Further decides that the information provided in nomination file 00589, Music of the Iranian ethnic groups, is not sufficient to allow the Committee to determine whether the criteria for inscription on the Representative List are satisfied, as follows:

R.1:   Although the nomination presents an array of musical traditions, more information is required to describe the characteristics of the communities and tradition bearers, identifying any specific roles they may have, and to explain what their meaning is for the communities concerned;

R.2:   While the submitting State’s initiative to promote intercultural dialogue among its ethnic communities is commendable, the State is requested to clarify how the inscription of an element of such generality on the Representative List could contribute to promoting awareness of the significance of the intangible cultural heritage;

R.3:   Although the current and recent safeguarding measures are well defined, more information is required to understand the role of practitioners and communities, as well as the timetable and costs of the proposed measures;

R.4:   While the nomination was elaborated with the cooperation and commitment of several community associations, the State is requested to demonstrate clearly how the differences among all the ethnic groups involved in the nomination process were recognized and to provide their free, prior and informed consent.

  1. Decides to refer the nomination of Music of the Iranian ethnic groups to the submitting State Party and invites it to resubmit the nomination in a subsequent cycle, providing the additional information specified with regard to criteria R.1, R.2, R.3 and R.4.

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