How is Armenian music perceived in the world today? How is Armenian music presented in the world? At this present time, how successful are Armenian musicians? What should be the future of Armenian music?
Armenian music is used as a vehicle for presenting Armenian culture. Music can be analyzed as a component of an overall cultural strategy. Also considered is the interrelationship between music and education. These themes and others are presented in a live discussion on the show. The show features well-known Armenian composers and performers.
On November 16, 2018, Armenian National Philharmonic Orchestra (conductor Ruben Asatryan) and soloist, pianist Hayk Melikyan presented Arvo Pärt's "Lamentate" for the first time in Armenia. Written in 2002, the work is dedicated to the sculptor Anish Kapoor and his sculpture "Marsyas." Hayk Melikyan presents the theme of "Lamentate": "Earthly Marsyas dares to enter into a musical contest with the divine Apollo and loses. Apollo hangs Marsyas on a high pine tree, skins him and kills him."
Thirteen years ago, sculptor Anish Kapoor turned over this myth. Marsyas' "skin" extends along the entire length of the hall in the Tate Modern Museum. The powerful red gramophone-like pipes remind us of music in the first place. At the same time, they are the bloodied bones of Marsyas.
Since 2016, at the initiative of Samvel Baloyan, artistic director of the Center of Culture, Ministry of Education and Science, a boys' choir has been functioning at A. Chekhov Basic School No. 55. Under the leadership of Narine Voskanyan, member of Hover State Chamber Choir and choirmaster of the Le female group, the boys' choir takes part in the current events of the cultural life of their school and Armenia (the gala concert of the Singing Armenia competition and festival of choral music for children and youth, Revival Festival, etc.) and has presented two solo concerts within two years.
The end of the 1930s... Konstantin, a 10-year-old musician of the military orchestra of the neighboring country, played the piano and queued up for days to convey to his jailed mother the apples he had bought with the money he earned... "The son of the people's enemy" would later turn the State Variety Orchestra of Armenia into a symbol of the Soviet empire and of his homeland. This episode of our program is dedicated to the 90th anniversary of the innovative musician Konstantin Orbelyan, thanks to whom Armenian pop-jazz music became the property of the world.
Before our eyes, he is transforming from a gifted Armenian child into a serious pretension in the contemporary Armenian ballet. Dancer Raffi Galstyan, a soloist of the Alexander Spendiaryan National Academic Theater of Opera and Ballet, has already embodied the character of Armen in the ballet "Gayane" and is going to perform in "Spartacus" and "Cipollino" whose choreography has been described as "children's Spartacus." The year 2018 is a new stage in the artistic biography of our guest and in his successful participation in competitions.
On October 17, for the first time on the stage of the Alexander Spendiaryan National Academic Theater of Opera and Ballet, young tenor Mihran Aghajanyan performed in Giacomo Puccini's Tosca. In the past period of the creative life of the 26-year-old soloist of the Mariinsky Theater are the departments for piano and conducting at St. Petersburg Conservatory, while in the present, the route of concert tours connecting the West and the East.
Armenak Shahmuradyan (1878-1939) was a cherished pupil of Komitas. In the history of Armenian music he is known as an interpreter of the Vardapet's songs. With the endurance, invincible energy and boldness of а Mush Armenian, the Nightingale of Taron tempered his creative life, which was formed in Kevorkian Seminary, Nersisyan School, at Pauline Viardot's private lessons, Paris Conservatory and with the exceptional success of his debut at the Grand Opera. This episode of our program is dedicated to the 140th birth anniversary of the Golden Tenor.
You'll know who has made this confession if you listen to our conversation with musicologist and art critic Tatevik Shakhkulyan. She was the coordinator and participant of the "Intercultural Dialogue: Music Education Paths" international forum held on September 14 and 15 at the Komitas Museum-Institute.
Sevak Avanesyan was attracted to the cello by Steven Isserlis and was taken to Europe by the school of Medea Abrahamyan. He is a disciple of teachers of the richest generation in the history of the cello. He knows and honors the name and work of Diran Alexanian, who was born in Constantinople, became an exceptional teacher in France in the early 20th century and is the founder of the American cello school. About the winner of the Competition for Young Soloists (Luxembourg) and of the European Music Competition (Lyon), the documentary "Rhythm and Intervals" has been filmed that has been awarded several prizes.
"...Take Komitas with you. There are no swamps or mosquitoes in Harich. Komitas will certainly recover from malaria there, otherwise his life is in danger if he stays in Etchmiadzin this summer…" These words open the book of memoirs "My Memories of Komitas" by historian, linguist, vardapet, Kevorkian Seminary teacher, Director of Etchmiadzin Printing House Yervand Ter-Minassian, who was originally from Harich. In 1905, Komitas went to Harich Monastery for recovery and recorded 34 new songs within 6-7 weeks. It is even sais that it is in Harich that Komitas formed his first big choir.
Four years ago, knowing this story and wanting to organize a festival, Tigran Hekekyan followed the star of Komitas to Harich Monastery...
In the movie "Lorik," the composer of its music sings about the miracles happened in his fairy town, his beloved Yerevan, with colors that he took from the finest and familiar feelings. "I was working like an artist. There was the picture, and I would take my own melodies out of my treasury," says the composer.
In 2013, by the enthusiastic and caring efforts of well-known figures of contemporary Armenian musical art Tigran Hekekyan, Sona Hovhannisyan, Sarine Avtandilyan and Yuri Yuzbashyan, the Association of Armenian Choral Conductors was created. The chairman of this public organization is young conductor Kristine Sharoyan, who carries out unlimited performing and social activities. Thanks to her service, the world family of Armenian conductors lives in an enthusiastic tempo and with mature target programs. One of such projects is the new album titled "Music Treasures: Armenia."
The second part of the talk with composer Vagharshak (Vago) Zakaryan begins with his memories from the Moscow period: "That period was a phase for rethinking. But I wanted to come home. I regret returning so late; I regret leaving this place. I can feel complete only in my area." Let's continue getting acquainted with this musician who was once asked in surprise by violist Yuri Bashmet, "Why don't we know you"?
"Lorik" is a new film about the actor and the invisible great power of art. After watching it on the big screen, we take with us reflections on the endless dialogue of theater and cinema, actor and human, fairy tales and reality, childhood and maturity, blindness and sight, life and death, and remember a few phrases of the film's characters: "Sorry, I played your role in my own way, but it seems not bad" (Lorik)... "I'm a worker stuck to the ground; I have been and will remain such, while you are a robber" (Artur's grandfather)... "In this life we need nothing but love" (aunt)... Our guests are two Loriks: the author of the idea, co-writer and main actor of the film Mikayel Poghosyan and its general producer and co-writer Martiros Minasyan.
Pianist Armen-Levon Manaseryan who studies in Belgium started his musical journey under the guidance of famous pedagogues Shushanik Babayan and Sergey Sarajyan, and received the skill of drawing from his artist grandmother, Aida Boyajyan. These two gifts were combined in his first album titled "Color of Sound" and released by KNS Classical. The album contains "Piano Dances" by Komitas and "Pictures from the Exhibition" by Modest Mussorgsky. Musicologist Astghik Martirosyan also took part in the works of the CD release.
"Remember that we have much to do" – the final call of director Grigory Gyardushyan's film "Road to David of Sassoun" may have a value of epigraph for Vagharshak (Vago) Zakaryan. In the creative life of the composer, who has studied in the professional school of Edvard Baghdasaryan and Edvard Mirzoyan, and, generally, each work carried out in cultural sphere, has the potential of leaven. In the first part of our talk, you'll listen to excerpts from the composer's "Ricercar," from the piano sonata, a piece for cello from "Verbo Primo," and a soundtrack from the movie "A Road to David of Sassoun."
Once during the concert of Robert Amirkhanyan, musicologist Mher Navoyan "heard" how Seda who sang only secular songs could also sing sacred songs very well. Soloist of Arevik choir, classic performer of Robert Amirkhanyan's songs, and velvet pillar of the choir of Geghard Monastery – such was the first stage of the Germany-based singer Seda Amir-Karayan's creative life.
Armen Aharonyan studied in the piano classes of Yakov Zargaryan and Georgy Sarajyan. When Arno Babajanian listened to the performance of this young musician who differed from many other musicians, he concluded: "You will go far." Since 1980, our guest has lived in a faraway country: his life has joined the American motley highway and beats the music rhythms of this country. In 2018, a concert return will take place: the pianist is going to perform in Yerevan and Stepanakert.
Nowadays, Seda Amir-Karayan is a long-awaited singer at the most serious concerts of German music life. She performs in Berlin and Cologne philharmonic societies, music festivals in Stuttgart and Rheingau, and historical spiritual and secular concert halls in Germany. In the first part of our talk, you can listen to works by Gabriel Fauré, Philip Emmanuel Bach, Franz Schubert, and Johann Sebastian Bach.
In the history of Armenian culture, the brightest performing and creative tradition of wind music is associated with the name of Alexander Arutiunian, and his every step was directed to the future. One of the evidences for this is the 2nd International Festival of Wind Instruments named after Alexander Arutiunian, which will be held from June 12 to 15, 2018. We talk about this aspect of the composer's life and creative heritage with his daughter, pianist Narine Harutyunyan.
We are getting acquainted with Berlin-based tenor, songwriter Masis Arakelyan. His solo concert in Yerevan will be held at Komitas Museum-Institute on June 10, at 19:00. The entrance to the concert dedicated to the 2800th anniversary of Yerevan will be free. The program includes nine songs by Komitas, the song cycle "A Poet's Love" by Robert Schumann, and the singer's own songs. Do not be surprised if you listen to the songs of these three authors alternately – this is the idea of the singer.
The Little Singers of Armenia – our walking ambassadors – performed in festivals and concerts in Germany, Czech Republic and Georgia in the spring of 2018. The new and charmed audience shouted out: "If Armenian children are such, then what about their parents and country!" says our guest Tigran Hekekyan, the chief conductor of the choir, and shares his impressions with us from those days of the firework of human relations.
This is the name of the temporary exhibition of the year 2018 at Komitas Museum-Institute. Until December, each visitor will be illuminated by the personality and work of one of the five pupils of Komitas – Mihran Tumajan – an honest and conscientious figure of Armenian culture, a man with great inner strength. Our guests are Nairi Khachaturyan, the creator of the exhibition, and Gayane Amiragyan, the scholarly consultant, editor of the album of exhibits and of scholarly articles. During our broadcast, you'll also listen to several performances from the CD attached to the book.
Some months ago, the Komitas Publishing House published Yerevan Conservatory Associate Professor, pianist Naira Khachatryan's new collection, "Marches from Operas," of piano works arranged for four hands. Our guest, Naira Khachatryan, says she had always had heated discussions with the publisher of the book, Ruzanna Yesayan, and had played those pieces with her to make sure they are suitable for playing. During the broadcast, you'll listen to some performances by Naira Khachatryan and Narine Yengibaryan.
Diana Adamyan, a first-year student in Eduard Tadevosyan’s class at Komitas Conservatory in Yerevan, has won the first place at the Yehudi Menuhin International Competition for Young Violinists in 2018. This performance of hers has been the most prominent among her many performances over the last years, at different competitions and concerts. During our talk, we also broadcast some of her performances in different phases of the competition in Geneva, including excerpts from Bruch’s Concerto, from Beethoven’s String Quartet No. 4, from a work specially written for the competition by Klartag, and from Kreisler’s Miniature Viennese March.