ḴĀDEM MIṮĀQ, ʿAli-Moḥammad (b. Tehran, 1907; d. Tehran, 1958), musician, teacher, conductor, and composer. After finishing his primary education, he studied at the Falāḥat School of Agriculture (Madrasa-ye ʿāli-e falāḥat) for two years, but he soon took an interest in music and enrolled in 1930 in the newly established State School of Music (Madrasa-ye musiqi-e dawlati), where he studied Western music theory, piano, and double bass with Naṣr-Allāh Minbāšiān and later the principles of Persian music with ʿAli-Naqi Vaziri (d. 1979). His strong interest in music theory quickly attracted the notice of his teachers and fellow students. He also learned to play trombone and violin, and he was among the first group of students, including Aḥmad Forutan Rād, Bahāʾ-al-Din Bāmšād, Mehdi Daftari, and Ḡolām-Ḥosayn Āqāzamāni, who graduated from the State School of Music in 1933. Immediately upon receiving his diploma, he joined the teaching staff of the school, which from 1934 was called the Honārestān-e musiqi (Ḵāleqi, II, p. 302). He taught sight-reading and harmony until 1944, when he was appointed assistant administrator, a position he held for two years. In 1946, when Parviz Maḥmud became the principal, Ḵādem Miṯāq relinquished his teaching and administrative positions and limited his activities to conducting the Persian music ensemble (Ḵāleqi, II, pp. 293-302; Behruzi, I, p. 335; Naṣirifar, pp. 39, 42).
Ḵādem Miṯāq was one of the first members of the Society of National Music (Anjoman-e musiqi-e melli), founded in 1944 by Ruh-Allāh Ḵāleqi (d. 1965). For many years he played piano and double bass in the Anjoman’s orchestra. He joined the musicians of Radio Iran in 1941, where he worked as a performer and conductor with many outstanding musicians. He was also a member of the Tehran Symphonic Orchestra from its founding, and from 1954 he conducted the orchestra of the National School of Music. The establishment in 1950 of the Office of Fine Arts (Edāre-ye honarhā-ye zibā), upgraded and renamed the Ministry of Culture and Arts (Wezārat-e farhang o honar) in 1964, led to the creation of five orchestras, directed by Abu’l-Ḥasan Ṣabā, Aḥmad Forutan Rād, Ḥosayn Rādmehr, and Meḥdi Meftāḥ as well as by Ḵādem Miṯāq, who conducted the third orchestra for many years (Vaziri, pp. 1-2; Naṣirifar, pp. 21, 24, 25, 39, 120-21, 198; Behruzi, I, p. 337).
As a composer, Ḵādem Miṯāq wrote a number of songs and marches that were mostly published in song books and printed instruction manuals of his time. In his compositions he mainly followed the style of ʿAli Naqi Vaziri and his circle of students. Among his famous compositions are “Sorud-e Honarmandān” (Song of artists) and “Pāydār Irān” (Everlasting Iran), two songs set to poems by Ḥosayn Golgolāb (d. 1984), and “Sorud-e farhang” (Song of culture), which was set to a poem by Ḥasan Ṣadr Sālek. Ḵāleqi praised his song “Našāṭ-e ṭabiʿat” (The Delight of nature), composed in the dastgāh of Māhur, as “wholly Iranian in spirit, with metric variety and an attractive progression” (Vaziri, pp. 1-2; Ḵāleqi, III, p. 118-20; Behruzi, p. 337).
Ḵādem Miṯāq was also active in collecting regional folksongs. In 1951, when the National Sound Archive (Ṣedā-ḵāne-ye melli) was established in the Office of Fine Arts, he made several field trips to various regions of Iran to collect folksongs and later arranged them for the orchestras in which he performed. His career was cut short in the summer of 1958 when he died in a car crash on the way home from a field trip to Isfahan (Behruzi, I, p. 338).
Š. Behruzi, Čehrehā-ye musiqi-e Irān, Tehran, 1988.
R. Ḵāleqi, “ʿAli Moḥammad Ḵādem Miṯāq,” Muzik-e Irān 4, 1957, p. 44.
Idem, “Kontrebās-e ʿAli Moḥammad Ḵādem Miṯāq,” Muzik-e Irān 5, 1958, pp. 12, 36.
Idem, “Honarmand-e zaḥmatkeš,” Musiqi 27, 1958, pp. 9-13.
Idem, Sargozašt-e musiqi-e Irān, 3 vols. in 1, Tehran, 2002, iii, pp. 118-20.
H. Naṣirifar, Mardān-e musiqi-ye sonnati va novin-e Irān, 2 vols., Tehran, 1992.
S. Sepantā, Tāriḵ-e taḥavvol-e żabṭ-e musiqi dar Irān, Tehran, 1998.
M. Setāyešgar, Nām-nāme-ye musiqi-e Irānzamin, III, Tehran, 1997.
ʿA. N. Vaziri, “Be monāsebat-e dargožašt-e Ḵādem Miṯāq,” Musiqi 27, 1958, pp. 1-2.
(Amir Hossein Pourjavady)
Originally Published: September 15, 2009
Last Updated: April 19, 2012
This article is available in print.
Vol. XV, Fasc. 3, pp. 326-327