Songs for no one

Nastaran Razawi Khorasani
Tue 29 Mar ’22 - Sat 17 Dec ’22
Visual performance about the invisible lives of a boy and girl in Iran's Islamic dictatorship.
Tue 29 Mar ’22
Sat 17 Dec ’22

The theatre maker Nastaran Razawi Khorasani reveals the otherwise invisible lives of a boy and a girl living under the Islamic dictatorship of Iran. She performs duets, dialogues, poems and songs in an evocative solo production based on telephone conversations with the children. Songs for no one is a portrait of a hidden society, painted with the voices of two children speaking in the ancient language of Persian, and revealing what is usually unseen.

Nastaran: “How can I share a platform with people who are literally and figuratively excluded from it? This question was the underlying drive for this project. I am extremely aware of the privileges I enjoy and feel more than ever the responsibility to speak on behalf of those who cannot. I left Iran as a refugee in my childhood. I live in freedom in the Netherlands, but I identify strongly with the youngest generation of children living in Iran now. I want their voices to be heard.”

What does it mean to have to live under a dictatorship? What ideas and hopes keep the younger generation going? Songs for no one is about the fragility of freedom, the lack of freedom in everyday life and dreams about freedom in the future.

Award BNG bank Theaterprijs for Songs for no one
Nastaran was awarded the BNG Bank Theaterprijs for her concept for Songs for no one and a year later she also won the prize for her production. The jury report 2021 said:

''Razawi Khorasani impressively manages to portray the children’s precarious situation, their irritations and boundless ambition in her performance. The light tone of the conversations and the invigorating curiosity ensures that the production, despite its subject matter, is never too heavy. Razawi Khorasani showcases in Songs for no one her ability as maker, performer and also as interviewer.''

Aftertalk with Asefeh Eskandari

On Thursday December 15th, the performance will be followed by an aftertalk hosted by Asefeh Eskandari, an active member of the global collective Woman, Life, Freedom. Since Iran's nation-wide protests that started on September 19th 2022, the collective feel the need to make their voices heard in the Netherlands as well. They have been creating awareness through demonstrations, publications, by participating in talkshows and engaging in political dialogues.

During the aftertalk, Asefeh will talk about the unrest in Iran and what is at stake for the demonstrators. She will also engage in conversation and answer questions from the audience. In addition to this aftertalk, a photo exhibition will be present.


"When she is singing, dancing and rapping, you sense the bizarre reality behind the shuttered windows in a country where treachery, blockades and secret services infect children’s lives, but not their dreams." ★★★★ de Volkskrant 

"Her interview technique is exemplary: she doesn’t put any words in the children’s mouths, she restricts her questions to everyday life and the tangible and she then perceptively asks more questions." ★★★★ NRC 

"It is a top achievement by Nastaran Razawi Khorasani that she has made such a charming production with a hard-hitting subject." Theaterkrant Critic’s choice

About the maker

Nastaran Razawi Khorasani (Iran, 1987) graduated from the Toneelacademie Maastricht. She is a theatre maker and actor and has performed with companies including Ro Theater, Internationaal Theater Amsterdam, Maas Theater and Dance and Nineties Productions. Her work is also performed internationally. At the Netherlands Theatrefestival in 2014, she won the Gouden Krekel [‘Golden Cricket’] for the most impressive achievement on stage for her role in CASH from Maas Theater and Dance. In 2020 she was nominated for the Dutch Dance Festival Young Audiences Prize. Nastaran will be an associate maker for Theater Rotterdam in collaboration with the Coproducers in the coming years. She and Davy Pieters form the makers duo Kobe, with which she is currently making a documentary.

concept, direction and performance Nastaran Razawi Khorasani music Jimi Zoet and Nastaran Razawi Khorasani dramaturgy Tobias Kokkelmans stage design and video Peter van Til (BrotherTill) coach Suzan Boogaerdt costume advice Rebekka Wörmann technical André Goos (Denzo Theater Techniek) and Andy Twillert production Nadine Dijkstra business manager Wilma Kuite (Alles voor de Kunsten) marketing Dieke van der Spek and Leonie Poot photo Mostafa Heravi graphic designer and image processing Maartje de Groot stage photography Julian Maiwald a production from the Kobe collectief co-producers BNG Bank Theaterprijs, Maas Theater and Dance, Theaterfestival Boulevard in collaboration with Het Nationale Theater, We Are Public and Workspacebrussels