Posts Tagged ‘armenian history’


[Web Wrap]: Find a Middle Ground: Armenian Church and Getty Should Work Together.

July 20, 2010

By Heghnar Watenpaugh via Los Angeles Times

Hat Tip: Liana Aghajanian via @writepudding on Twitter

Seven illustrated pages ripped out of a medieval Gospels manuscript: Who owns them; who should own them? Those who value them as works of art, or those who revere them as religious objects? The seven pages feature beautiful illuminations by Toros Roslin, the most important Armenian miniatures painter of the Middle Ages. Their value is immense as artifacts, but also as rare witnesses to the memory of a nation almost erased from history. The manuscript from which the pages were torn was lost during the Armenian genocide of 1915-22 The Western Prelacy of the Armenian Apostolic Church of America believes those seven pages are holy and belong to the church: It is suing the J. Paul Getty Museum to get them back. The Getty says it owns the pages as works of art and acquired them legally.

Please continue reading here.


[Web Wrap]: Digitized Copy of “Zohrab: An Introduction” Available.

July 15, 2010

A digitized version of the book “Zohrab: An Introduction”, selected and translated by Ara Baliozian (co-published by the National Association of Armenian Studies and Research), is a available on the Zohrab Center’s weblog.

Please download it here.

Ara Baliozian


Credit: Zohrab Center


[Web Wrap]: Armenia is Calling Me.

April 13, 2010

By Liana Aghajanian via ianyan Magazine

When I was an awkward 12-year-old, trying to make friends, fit in and figure out my place in the world, I got plucked from a public school and put into a private Armenian institution for two years. It wasn’t by choice. The school district had a problem with the fact that I lived one street over from their designated city line and so off to Armenian school I went, for better or for worse.

It took one year (and countless horrific hours memorizing Armenian conjugations and reciting snippets of ancient Armenian history in front of a bunch of bored prepubescents) but I finally felt like I had made a place in this strange, yet comforting environment.

As the end of junior high approached, classes were routinely taken on trips to Armenia as a last hurrah before venturing off to the scary world of high school, where you end up right back down at the bottom of the hierarchy again.

Please read on…

Khor Virap Monastary with Mount Ararat


Credit: Andrew Behesnilian
via Wikipedia Commons


[Web Wrap]: Cultural Tidbits — Armenian Navy Band.

March 9, 2010

Via Zohrab Center

Founded in 1998 by Turkish-born Armenian musician Arto Tuncboyaciyan, the Armenian Navy Band is comprised of twelve of Armenia’s most talented jazz and traditional musicians and uniquely performs the compositions of Tuncboyaciyan, a genre of music he refers to as “avant garde folk.” The Armenia-based ANB has put out six CDs over the past ten years and has performed all over world, going on tour in the US, Europe and throughout Turkey. In 2006, the ANB won the BBC World Music Audience “Best Performer” Award. Accepting the award outside of London, Tuncboyaciyan played his distinctive beer bottle for an audience of thousands.

Please click here to continue reading.


[Friends of FAR]: The Zohrab Center in New York has a new shiny blog!

March 3, 2010

With thousands of books, videos, maps, pictures, and other resources, the Krikor and Clara Zohrab Information Center, founded in 1987, helps researchers, academics, teachers, and the community-at-large learn about the Armenian community and its rich history. The holdings of the center include extensive information on the history and customs of the Armenian Church and the American Dioceses, the Armenian Genocide, and the current Armenian political culture.

Check out their new Blog or just come on by.


[Listening to Armenia]: The Magic Kanoun Carpet

December 11, 2009

By Daniele Faye Sourian Sahr

Take one grand piano, shrink it to a tenth the size, take off the top, lose the keys, and place it on your lap – you are about to play the Kanoun. But it won’t be easy to master this Caucasian/Middle Eastern zither instrument. Keeping your fingers moving quickly across about 70 strings, which you must tune with your left while playing the melody with the right, gives new meaning to the word multi-tasking. At times, you might have to tune your ear to quarter tones (that’s an even smaller degree of note than the Western musician is typically used to). Multi-tasking, tonal detail, and physical balance – women often cross their legs under the flat instrument – are the least demanded of you.

A student at FAR’s Octet Music School in Gyumri
Performs on the Kanoun

Credit: Daniele Faye Sourian Sahr

To listen and watch takes less effort, however, and easily dazzles eyes and ears. A vibrating metallic sound cascading in waves across a melody and filling in the lines of syncopated rhythms makes the music of one player match that of several. While watching the spectacle (if not engaged already in a desire to dance), one starts to imagine the relation to another renowned talent of the region – one of silence but with an equal outcome of mesmerizing color. The musician plays the Kanoun like a loom, as if the strings were threads creating beautiful patterns of sound – a tonal carpet of reds, greens, purples, and blues all intertwined in an intricate song of unique pleasure.

Click on the video below of a virtuosic Armenian Kanoun player performing in traditional dress to experience the music and instrument for yourself.


[Listening to Armenia]: Happy Birthday, Yerevan!

October 27, 2009

By Daniele Faye Sourian Sahr

Yerevan, with towering Ararat watching over it, turns 2791 years old this year. On October 11th, this ancient city burst forth in a birthday celebration full of music, dance, parades, fireworks, light shows, and songs of Yerevan – new and old. People spilled out onto the streets with festive gatherings and carried out morning-til-night jubilations.

Morning View of Yerevan City Center from the Cascade


Credit: Paul Sookiasian

Erebuni, as it was first named, was born to this land in 782, BC. The Urartians, ancestors to today’s Armenian people, under the rule of King Argishti founded the city as a strategic fortress town, strengthening their power in the Araratian plains as they moved their empire eastward.  2791 years later, Yerevan officials closed the city center of cars while parade participants gathered on this king’s street, Argishti, in front of the Yerevan Municipality and History buildings. With a rush of red, blue and orange, citizens waving flags flooded the main avenues as they sang and danced throughout a city covered with banners, succinctly reading, “Sirum em Quez Erevan” (“I love you, Yerevan”). From ancient times to modern, not a moment has been left unloved, uncared for, or unsung.

We wish you at least another 2791 more, Yerevan!

Performance stages set up around the city encouraged everyone to enjoy music and dance. Here is a video of folk-dressed performers and citizenry alike joining in the day’s fun.