As the world marks the centennial of the Armenian Genocide, some of Armenia’s musicians are bringing the music of their home country to American shores.
NEW YORK—St. Vartan Armenian Cathedral was aglow on Saturday evening, Oct. 17, with enchanting musical selections by three artists originally from Armenia. They included two leading soloists of the St. Vartan Cathedral Choir, mezzo soprano Hasmik Meikhanedjian and soprano Anahit Zakaryan, and pianist-composer Hayk Arsenyan.
The concert began with Komitas’ “Chinar es,” a classical love song, sung with heightened emotion by the two singers. It was followed by the beautiful “Parandzem’s Aria from Arshak II,” a powerful tribute by a wife to her kind and loving husband, sung passionately by Meikhanedjian.
Pianist-composer Hayk Arsenyan debuted with the Armenian National Philharmonic Orchestra at age 11, and was a soloist with the Radio France National Philharmonic Orchestra at age 17. Since then, he has performed in recitals in the United States, Canada, the Soviet Union, Europe, South America, and the Middle East. He is an avid explorer of various experimental projects with dance, drama, and the visual arts. Currently he teaches at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts, and is a member of the French Society of Authors and Composers, with two collections of his original works published in Paris.