#5: Lady of the Roses / Back Vocal (2 films)

#5: Lady of the Roses / Back Vocal (2 films)
Directed by: Mojtaba Mirtahmasb
2008 / 2004 / 52 / 40 mins
Persian with English Subtitles

“Lady of the Roses” is the name given to the late Shahindokht Sanati, a lady who went to the Lalehzaar region of Kerman before the Islamic revolution. She replaced poppies with roses and opium with rosewater and took this so far as to transform the agricultural destiny of a whole region. The story is told by Homayoun Sanati, Shahindokhts spouse, three years after her death. He is the founder of Franklin Publishing, Offset printing house, Pars Paper Co. among others and is considered a one-of-a-kind figure in Irans culture, industry, and management.


Capture the struggles of contemporary Iranian singers and musicians working to be heard in their own country. Back Vocal explores Iran’s prohibition, since the Islamic Revolution of 1979, of female solo singers. Mirtahmasb says: “Three years of roaming among musicians of Tehran resulted in two films centered on the theme of restrictions on music in Iran. Back Vocal tells the story of women singers whose unaccompanied singing is forbidden by religious laws of the country, but who nonetheless try to remain active, even if that means taking the second seat. I knew from the beginning that such a film would not get permission to be screened, so I never applied for a permit.”