Creative cues

Television illustration

Dr. Sepehr Rahmany’s love for the performing arts has taken him from Schulich Dentistry’s skit night stage to television screens across North America

By Emily Leighton, MA’13

Dr. Sepehr RahmanyKnown as ‘the imitator’ during his dental school days, Dr. Sepehr Rahmany, DDS’03, can toss out some uncanny impressions of past and present Schulich Dentistry faculty members.

This quirky knack for characters is one of the reasons he helped organize the annual dentistry skit nights throughout his four years at the School.

“I had a lot of fun with my classmates and professors during dental school,” he said. “We developed close friendships.”

Dr. Rahmany’s acting talents were on display again about four years ago, in TV commercials for Crest and Oral-B that aired across North America.

He auditioned on a whim after a patient recommended him.

“I played a dentist, so it wasn’t a stretch,” he said with a laugh. “I consider it a stroke of luck. And it was a lot of fun to be a part of such a unique experience.”

The amateur thespian has also performed in local theatre productions around Vancouver, where he now lives and works.

Dr. Rahmany was born in Iran in 1975. As members of the Baha’i faith, his family faced persecution and left the country before the 1979 revolution.

Landing in Canada at the age of four, Dr. Rahmany was raised in Ottawa and completed an undergraduate degree in human kinetics at the University of Ottawa.

The dental profession appealed to him because of the combination of several unique disciplines. “Dentistry is the perfect marriage of art, engineering and health,” he said. “And I feel I can really make a difference for people, improve their lives in a positive way.”

“The School really prepared me for the practical experience of private practice. We were hands on from day one, which gave me confidence going out into the real world.” —Dr. Sepehr Rahmany, DDS’03

Dr. Rahmany entered Schulich Dentistry in 1999, at a time when the Y2K scare was dominating news headlines. He remembers listening to rap and R&B artists like Usher, Sean Paul and Nelly, and embracing the ‘frosted tips’ hairstyle during his dental school days.

Apart from world events and pop culture, he also looks back at his four years of study with gratitude. “The School really prepared me for the practical experience of private practice,” he said. “We were hands on from day one, which gave me confidence going out into the real world.”

Having spent summers in Seattle during his dental degree, the call of the west coast proved irresistible and Dr. Rahmany settled in British Columbia immediately after graduation. “The lifestyle, the outdoor living, the scenery – it’s incredible to live here,” he explained.

Dr. Rahmany purchased a dental practice in North Vancouver in 2006 and has since expanded to take over two additional practices from retiring dentists in the area.

A self-described dental nerd, Dr. Rahmany continues to enhance his skills and qualifications through continuing education courses in Canada and around the world. With this advanced training, he now performs implant surgery, gum grafting and wisdom teeth in-house.

The energetic 41-year-old is also committed to community work and currently helps young people foster a sense of community through informal gatherings and conversation.

“As a Baha’i, the highest station to achieve is that of servitude,” Dr. Rahmany explained. “I think we all have a moral duty to learn about the world and to be concerned about the needs of others.”

With no immediate plans to return to the stage or television screens, the successful dentist fills his spare time with recreational activities and family.

He is raising two young children, a three-year-old and 13-month-old, with his wife, Samira.

He views his chosen profession as a commitment to life-long learning and building relationships, advice he passes on to dental students and recent graduates. “Constantly strive to learn more skills and make education a major priority throughout your career,” he said. “And learn about your patients; their lives, families, adventures, and share yours with them.”