Roqe Special Edition

A tribute to the legendary Maestro Mohammad-Reza Shajarian.

Fifteen prominent voices from around the world join Jian
to share memories, thoughts and perspective on the late Iranian legend.

Stream the full original Roqe theme music.

Stream the full original Roqe theme music.

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for the latest Roqe Read commentary:

"Reza Rohani
and the Flight of Talent"
  • Season 1
September 21, 2020
A feature interview with Iranian-American comedian and actor, Max Amini. In a wide-ranging conversation Max opens up to Jian about navigating comedy in difficult times, a knack for improvisation, the challenges of being an oddball American kid in revolutionary Iran, and his ongoing commitment to working hard and spreading positivity.
  • Season 1
September 17, 2020
Interviews with human rights activist, Hadi Ghaemi, legendary writer and activist Shahrnush Parsipur, and screenwriter and director Cyrus Nowrasteh. On the week of the execution of star wrestler Navid Afkari in Iran - and the resulting global outcry - Jian convenes three different perspectives and voices from the diaspora for feature interviews that deal with ongoing atrocities in Iran. As Executive Director of the Center for Human Rights in Iran, Hadi Ghaemi gives his thoughts on the recent uptick in political executions in Iran. Shahrnush Parsipur engages in a wide-ranging conversation with Jian on everything from writer’s block, to years in prison, to resilience, and not fearing Khomeini. And Cyrus Nowrasteh joins us on his latest feature film, “Infidel,” his journey as an Iranian-American storyteller, and his powerful and controversial film, “The Stoning of Soraya M.” Plus, the Roqe Thursday team convenes for option and Letters of the Week.
  • Season 1
September 14, 2020
An in-depth interview with legendary songwriter/composer Farid Zoland about compensation, copyright, and hoping to finally be paid what he deserves. The man behind dozens and dozens of hit songs in Persian music by icons like Googoosh, Dariush, Ebi and Hayedeh, joins Jian to talk about how he has received little to no significant compensation and recognition for a catalogue of melodies that most Iranians know by heart. The interview is conducted in both English and Farsi (with English subtitles).
  • Season 1
September 10, 2020
An interview with Iranian-American communications strategist, radio host, and national chair of Iranians Count, Bita Milanian, about the campaign to have people of Iranian descent in the United States sign up for the 2020 census. Plus classical guitar virtuoso Lily Afshar joins Jian to recount her journey from a kid in Tehran to the top stages of the world as a master classical guitarist. And the Roqe Team convenes with banter about squirrels, chicken wing mehmoonies, and the Letters of the Week.
  • Season 1
September 8, 2020
An interview with popular Iranian-American politician, Jimmy Delshad, the former two-term Mayor of Beverly Hills, California. Jimmy joins Jian for a funny and touching interview to share his story of being a Jewish kid from Shiraz who arrived in America in 1959, his pioneering campaign to become Mayor, his recent bout with Covid-19, and his reflections on the diaspora and community divisions in 2020. There are jokes along the way and insights from his eight decades of life.
  • Season 1
September 4, 2020
An interview with Behdad Esfahbod, widely regarded to be a tech genius, the creator of Persian text on the internet, and a former employee at Google, about his recent harrowing trip to Iran and detention at the hands of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard. Also, Iranian-American comedian Melissa Shoshahi joins Jian on her Travel Ban comedy show. Plus the Roqe Roundtable with special guest psychotherapist and author Alireza Taheri, and the Letters of the Week with the Roqe team.
  • Season 1
August 31, 2020
An interview with legendary Iranian-American journalist, Homa Sarshar. Homa joins Jian to reflect on her 55 years as a writer, reporter, producer and broadcaster. She details her early years growing up as a Jewish girl in Tehran, the heartbreaking tale of her firing from Kayhan newspaper in 1978, her drive to rebuild in the U.S., her pioneering role as a female Iranian journalist, and reflections on the Iranian community in the era of Trump.
  • Season 1
August 28, 2020
Part two of the Roqe Series marking the 40th anniversary of the death of the Shah of Iran. Historians Andrew Scott Cooper (“The Fall of Heaven”) and Mohammad Amini (“The Time and Life of Ahmad Kasravi”) join Jian for separate feature interviews to discuss the Pahlavi Dynasty, historical revisionism, and assessing the Shah through the lens of 2020. Plus, the Roqe team convenes for Letters of the Week.

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