Tehran Stories

<a href="http://www.pri.org/programs/the-world”>The World</a> sent host Marco Werman and reporter Matthew Bell to Tehran to meet the people we don’t hear about in the headlines.

Grand Ayatollah Reza Hosseini Nassab (L) of the Imam Mahdi Islamic Center in Toronto has teamed up with Rabbi Cory Weiss of Temple Har Zion (R) to help raise funds for Syrian refugees moving to Canada.

The ayatollah and the rabbi who teamed up to help Syrian refugees


In Canada, an imam from Iran has joined up with his next-door neighbor, a Reform rabbi, to help raise funds to resettle families fleeing civil war. What brought the unlikely duo together? It began with parking.

Photo of Iran

At the wheel of a Tehran taxi, a country’s history and a plea for peace

Global Politics
Hamed Jafari, Mohammadreza Azali and Alireza Jozi (left to right) are the founders of the Tehran startup TechRasa.

Iran’s startup tech scene is getting off the ground

Pallett Band in Iran.

Iranians love their klezmer

Marco Werman spoke with Persian food blogger Azita Houshiar in Tehran.

This Iranian American went to visit Tehran, and decided to stay for the food

Mohammad Rahamian is a prominent Iranian playwright who's just made his first film inside Iran.

This Iranian film is a love letter to classic American cinema


There’s no love lost between America and the theocratic rulers of Iran. But Marco Werman discovered during a visit to the cinema in Tehran that many Iranians have a whole lot of love for classic American movies.

The masterminds behind "Studio_On" of Tehran are Negin Nasiri (left) and Shaghayegh Jahanbani.

These Iranian entrepreneurs are building a future out of wood


Nagin Nasiri wanted to get of Iran. She was accepted to grad school in the US, but she was refused a visa. So, Nasiri started a company with her old friend, Shaghayegh Jahanbani. Now they make stunning custom furniture in a Tehran wood shop.

Arash Jame offers Marco Werman a violin lesson on Iranian scales.

Violin masterclass — Why I wanted to learn Iranian scales


Last Friday night, The World’s Marco Werman got a violin lesson in Tehran and learned what makes Iranian classical music scales different from Western music.

Mostafa Kavakebian speaks at a reformist gathering in Tehran.

It’s election season in Iran, too

Global Politics

Iran’s hardline rulers have disqualified many of their rival candidates for this month’s elections. But supporters of the reformist camp are still holding out some hope that their votes can make a difference.

Iranian folk-rock band Damahi performs in the country with approval from the government.

Iran’s cultural gatekeepers surprisingly greenlight a folk-rock fusion band


The band Damahi takes its name from a giant mythical fish of the Persian Gulf. It plays Western-sounding electric music and still manages to get support from the Iranian regime.