ROUND TABLE: Reflections on the Work of Arby Ovanessian in Conversation with Him

The theme of the Round Table is centred on Arby Ovanessian (1942– ) and his creative work in theatre and cinema. Ovanessian led the way in transforming modern Iranian theatre and his dedicated work initiated a new direction that opened a path to original, innovative research. The track of his footsteps can be widely perceived in contemporary endeavours of many Iranian artists.

On this rare, remarkable occasion, the discussion is shaped in the presence of Ovanessian himself. The session offers an interview with Ovanessian that is led by academics and researchers who participate in this session, exploring and interpreting the significance of Ovanessian’s work. The same scholars present wide-ranging articles on his work in another Panel on Ovanessian, and thus this Round Table can be considered as a continuation of the discourse.

What makes this session unique is that it brings together people who encountered Ovanessian’s work at different levels and it creates a ground for developing a stimulating conversation. First and foremost, the Round Table gives one a chance to meet and hear from Ovanessian about his experimental work in theatre and cinema and his thought-provoking ideas as a director. The participating scholars and researchers of multi-disciplinary backgrounds pose insightful questions and provide their own interpretation of Ovanessian’s work based on their research. The session allows the audience to witness a dynamic discussion between Ovanessian (director) and the scholars (researchers) and give them a chance to ask relevant questions.

The Round Table serves as a meeting place laying the ground to a discourse on Ovanessian’s work that has elevated the level of the culture in Iran and immensely contributed to the expansion of art. It provides a momentous opportunity to reflect on his avant-garde work in theatre and cinema that reached far beyond a specific time period or place.