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Armenian National Anthem - performed by the Armenian Philharmonic Orchestra. Conductor Eduard Topchjan. September 2011 (click to download)


Armenian National Anthem - performed by the Armenian Philharmonic Orchestra and Armenian State Academic Capella. Conductor Eduard Topchjan. September 2011 (click to download)

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artdirectors

ARSHAK ADAMYAN (1884-1956)

Conductor, Composer, Art Critic, Pedagogue, Merited Artist of the RA.
Worked with Armenian Philharmonic Orchestra as the Artistic Director and Principal Conductor in 1924-1926.

Arshak Adamyan studied piano and composition at Schtern Conservatory in Berlin (1904-1906).  In 1910 he graduated from Law Department, St. Petersburg University. From 1921 to 1924 Arshak Adamyan was the Head of the Armenian Art Club in Tbilisi, and from 1924 to 1926 he was the Rector of Yerevan Conservatory. In 1924-1925 Adamyan’s contribution to encouraging the acting professors and students to participate in symphony orchestra establishment in the frames of Yerevan Conservatory, is invaluable. The very first concert on December 10, 1925, under baton of Alexander Spendiaryan served as a stimulus for this and it was Adamyan who organized the orchestra consisted of 17 professors and students. The Conservatory Orchestra first concert took place on March 20, 1925, coached by Arshak Adamyan. Thanks to the constant acting of this orchestra, symphony music was established and spread in Armenia.
From 1926 to 1936 Adamyan served as an Artistic Adviser to the Trans-Caucasus Central Executive Committee. From 1936 to 1943 he served as a Dean of the department of Composition and Music Theory of Leningrad Conservatory, as well as the Institute of Drama and Music.  During the years 1944-1949 Adamyan was a research officer of the Armenian Academy of Sciences, Department of Philosophy. A. Adamyan taught Aesthetics at Yerevan Higher Education Institutions for many years. He authors internationally known research articles on Aesthetics, such as “Views on the Aesthetics of Medieval Armenia”, and other works.

 

ALEXANDER SPENDIARYAN (1871-1928)

Conductor/Composer/music and public figure, People’s Artist of the RA.
Worked with Armenian Philharmonic Orchestra as the Artistic Director and Principal Conductor in 1926-1927.

The founder of symphony music in Armenia- Alexander Spendiaryan was born in the village of Kakhovka (Kherson region, Ukraine).  In 1895 he graduated from Moscow University, Law Department. While at the University he mastered violin and played in the student orchestra. He studied theory of composition with N.Klenowsky in Moscow from 1892 to 1894 and with N. Rimsky-Korsakov in St. Petersburg from 1896 to 1900. He lived in Crimea for quite a while, where he was involved in music related activities particularly, conducting. In 1924 Spendiaryan moved to Yerevan, Armenia. To present a concert of his own works he organized an orchestra consisted of Conservatory 17 professors and students. This was done by the support of Conservatory rector- Arshak Adamyan. The first concert took place on December 10, 1924 and is appropriately considered as the first ever symphony concert in Armenia. This was a stimulus for a constantly acting symphony orchestra in the frames of Yerevan Conservatory to be established under the support and patronage of Arshak Adamyan. Spendiaryan coached the Armenian symphony orchestra, first together with Arshak Adamyan until 1926, and then by himself, until he passed away in 1928.
Going beyond the initial scholar framework this orchestra turned to be the promoter of symphonic music in Armenia. Yerevan Opera Theatre Orchestra, as well as all other symphony orchestras in Armenia, were later established on the basis and tradition of this Conservatory orchestra.
Alexander Spendiaryan played an important role in establishing national school of composition, its artistic principles and characteristic style. He enriched the Armenian music with new artistic concepts, subject matters, variety of genres, expressive means, creating the foundation of national Armenian symphonic music. Spendiaryan’s “Crimean Sketches” (two suites), “Yerevan Etudes” and his other symphonic compositions are among the best works in the treasury of the Armenian classical music. His opera “Almast” is one of the very first Armenian operas.

SOUREN CHAREKYAN (1901-1979)

Conductor/Professor/ People’s Artist of RA, Merited Artist of Uzbekistan
Worked with Armenian Philharmonic Orchestra as the Artistic Director and Principal Conductor in 1927-1929.

Souren Charekyan was born in Tbilisi and graduated from the Tbilisi State Conservatory. He continued his music education at the Leningrad Conservatory graduating in 1932.
In 1928, being just a 4th year student of Tbilisi Conservatory, he was invited to move to Armenia in order to undertake the conductorship of the Yerevan Conservatory Symphony Orchestra (by that time Armenian Philharmonic Orchestra acted as Yerevan Conservatory Orchestra). Charekyan’s work promoted the professional growth of the orchestra and resulted to the significant extension of the repertoire. Later Charekyan worked with the same orchestra when Yerevan Opera Theatre was founded and the Conservatory Orchestra’s all members were involved in the works of the opera.
From 1932-34 and 1944-1979 he was a conductor at Yerevan Opera Theater (1957-1964 as Principal Conductor).  Charekyan conducted operas like T. Choukhadjian’s “Leblebiji”, “Arshak II”, L.Khoja-Einatian’s “Namus”, G.Armenian’s “Khachatur Abovyan”, and works by European composers.   From 1934-1936 Souren Charekyan was the Principal Conductor of Tbilisi Paliashvili Opera and Ballet Theater, and from 1936-1944 Principal Conductor of Opera Theater of Tashkent in Uzbekistan, having considerably enlarged the repertoire of Uzbek National Opera. Charekyan taught at the Yerevan Komitas State Conservatory in 1927-1929, 1932-1934, 1945-1948 and 1954-1979.

GEVORK BUDAGHYAN (1899-1978)

Conductor, Professor of music, public figure, People’s Artist of the RA, Professor
Worked with Armenian Philharmonic Orchestra as the Artistic Director and Principal Conductor in 1929-1932.

Gevorg Budaghyan was born in Baku, and was grown up in Moscow. In 1929, he graduated from the Moscow Conservatory (opera-symphony conducting class of Professor Constantine Saradjian). From 1922 to 1929, he coached the music society of Armenian House of Culture in Moscow. From 1932 to 1958 he was a conductor at Yerevan Opera Theater orchestra.
He conducted operas like A.Spendiaryan’s “Almast”, H.Stepanyan’s “Nazar the Brave”, K.Zakaryan’s “Mardjan”, A. Ter-Ghevondyan’s “In the Rays of Sun”, A. Tigranyan’s “David Beck”, as well as operas from Russian and Western European classical repertoire. At the same time he also conducted numerous symphony concerts. He is the author of musical composition to the ballet “Khandut”, written on the bases of Spendiaryan’s compositions, as well as the editor of the publication of the composer’s complete works in 11 volumes. From 1929 to 1978 Gevorg Budaghyan was teaching at the Yerevan Komitas Conservatory, assuming professorship in 1950. He also served two tenures as Vice Rector (1934-1936, 1949-1958).
For the years of his tenure the APO was still acting as the orchestra of Yerevan Conservatory, constantly performing concerts and bringing world classical music to Armenia. G. Budaghyan was able to stimulate the frequency of the orchestra concerts and thus supporting young soloists’ participation at the symphony concerts.
The Conservatory Orchestra turned to be the first performer of symphonic works of newly established Union of Composers of Armenia members.

CONSTANTINE SARADJIAN (1877-1954)

Conductor/Pedagogue/music public figure/Hero of Labor of USSR/People’s Artist of RA/Professor
Worked with Armenian Philharmonic Orchestra as the Artistic Director and Principal Conductor in 1941-1945.

Constantine Saradjian was born in Derbend (North Caucasus). In 1898 he graduated from the Moscow Conservatory as violinist (with I.V.Grzhimali) and studied counterpoint (with S.I.Taneyev). From 1905 to 1906 he took master-classes in conducting with Arthur Nikisch in Leipzig. He performed in various cities of Russia conducting opera performances and symphony concerts. He was considered to be presented as perfectly knowledgeable in modern music, and as great interpreter of Miaskovsky, Prokofiev and Shostakovich. He founded a conducting class at Moscow Conservatory (among the students are G. Budaghyan, L. Ginsburg, M. Paverman, and many others). He founded and led Moscow Amateur Symphony Orchestra (1924-1935, the latter was renamed after Saradjian in 1926). Since 1935 he has lived in Yerevan being engaged in multidisciplinary activities. He has been the principal conductor of Yerevan Opera Theatre, while conducting the independent concerts of the same theatre symphony orchestra. Since 1941 he has been the Artistic Director and Principal Conductor of the Symphony Orchestra of Armenia which was performing already in its new status.  Saradjian has broadly promoted the works by Armenian composers, also presented Beethoven’s all symphonies (except for the 9th). He has been the rector of Yerevan Conservatory in 1936-1937 and 1940-1954. A new generation of conductors was educated there (A.Katanyan, Yu.Davtyan, H.Voskanyan and many others).

 

MIKAEL MALUNTSYAN (1903-1973)

Conductor/Cellist/Pedagogue/People’s Artist of the RA. Professor.
Worked with Armenian Philharmonic Orchestra as the Artistic Director and Principal Conductor in 1945-1960 and in 1966-1967.

Maestro Maluntsyan was trained as cellist at Tbilisi Conservatory (class of Professor K.Mignar), but later, in 1935, he graduated from Moscow Conservatory, where he studied conducting under Professor Ginsburg.
Maluntsyan taught cello and chamber orchestra in 1920s.  He trained well-known Armenian conductors – Rafael Mangasaryan and David Khanjian. He was the conductor of opera studio of Moscow conservatory from 1934 to 1945. In 1945 he was back to Yerevan and continued teaching opera-symphony conducting at Yerevan conservatory and leading the chair of orchestra instruments.
As a Principal Conductor of the APO he was able to reestablish the orchestra by inviting new musicians, after musicians’ loss in the years of the World War II. He greatly contributed to the development of individual creative perspectives of the Orchestra. Maluntsyan was the first interpreter of many works of Armenian composers premiered by the orchestra. He also played major role in popularization of European classical orchestral repertoire in Armenia. Maestro Maluntsyan gave podium to many prominent conductors, giving the orchestra an opportunity to discover different approaches to music. During his two tenures many famous musicians performed in Yerevan together with the APO.
His era was also marked with touring throughout the former USSR, performing in concert halls of Moscow, Leningrad (St. Petersburg), the Baltic republics, Ukraine and Caucasus.

MIKAEL TERYAN (1905-1987)

Conductor, violist, pedagogue
People’s Artist of the RA, Laureate of State Prize of USSR, Professor
Worked with Armenian Philharmonic Orchestra as the Artistic Director and Principal Conductor in 1965-1966.

Mikael Teryan was born in Moscow. He graduated from Moscow Conservatory as a violinist (professors G.Doulov and K.Mostras). He was among the founders of Komitas State Quartet as well as the Quartet’s violist in 1924-1946. He has performed with D. Oistrakh, L.Oborin and S. Knoushevitski in different orchestras. He has worked with the Bolshoi Theatre as the concertmaster of violists. He headed viola and quartet classes and was the Dean of opera-symphony conducting department at the Moscow Conservatory. In 1957-1960 he coached Moscow Regional Philharmonia Symphony Orchestra. In 1961, he founded Moscow Conservatory student symphony orchestra and toured with concerts in Europe and Latin America. The Orchestra received 1st Prize at Herbert von Karajan International Contest.

OHAN DURIAN (1922-2011)

Conductor, composer, People’s Artist of the RA
Worked with Armenian Philharmonic Orchestra as the Artistic Director and Principal Conductor in 1960-1965 and in 1973.

Ohan Durian was born and raised in Jerusalem. From 1939 to 1945 he studied composition, conducting and organ at the local conservatory. He completed his education in Europe under the tutelage of H. Sherchen, R. Desormiere and G.Martinon. He performed with 110 world prominent orchestras. For quite a while he worked with opera and symphony orchestras of Avignon and Cape Town. From 1963 to 1968 Mr. Durian was the Music Director of the Leipzig Opera and Permanent Guest Conductor of the “Gewandhaus” Orchestra. Maestro Durian was the Artistic Director and Principal Conductor of the Radio & TV Symphony Orchestra founded by him, the Artistic Director and Principal Conductor of Yerevan Opera Theater. He is the author of two symphonic suites “Komitas” and other compositions.
While his tenure with the Armenian Philharmonic Orchestra Durian has been the first to perform many symphonic works by Armenian composers, in particular he premiered works by Edward Mirzoyan and John Ter-Tadevosyan (Symphonies No.1 & No.2), K.Orbelyan (Symphony No.1), Alexander Adjemian (Symphony No.2), Grigor Yeghiazaryan (“Hrazdan”). Numerous recordings of Maestro Durian have been made during his career. Durian has toured throughout former USSR republics as a guest conductor and has always promoted works by Armenian composers. Armenian Philharmonic Orchestra received the title of Honored Orchestra in the years of his tenure.

RUBEN VARTANYAN (1936-2008)

Conductor
Worked with Armenian Philharmonic Orchestra as the Artistic Director and Principal Conductor in 1967-1970.

R. Vartanyan studied at Moscow Conservatory (department of conducting). Ruben Vardanyan’s father, musicologist and clarinetist Zaven Vartanyan, played a great role in his son’s self-affirmation.
He worked as an Assistant in the Moscow Philharmonic Orchestra (Artistic Director and Principal Conductor: Kirill Kondrashin) and in the Bolshoi Theatre of the Soviet Union (Principal Conductor: Yevgeni Svetlanov). Herbert von Karajan appointed him as Assistant at the Vienna State Opera. For the years of his tenure Armenian Philharmonic Orchestra toured in Kiev, Leningrad (St. Petersburg), Baltic Republics and Transcaucasia. “The Story of the Soldier” by Stravinsky and many other modern works both by Armenian and foreign composers were presented. World famous artists like M. Rostropovich, D. Shafran, N. Khomitser, V. Tretiakov, O. Kogan, K. Georgian, B. Davidovich, V. Krainev, Y. Balyan, N. Vetrov, Sv. Navasardyan, R. Aharonyan, M. Abrahamyan, A. Babakhanyan and many others performed with the APO.
Since 1970 R. Vartanyan has been Artistic Director and Principal Conductor with National Symphony Orchestra of Bolivia and as a conductor at the Bolshoi Theatre of the Soviet Union. As an invited conductor he has participated with numerous famous orchestras. Since 1991 Ruben has worked in USA, with Arlington Symphony Orchestra as an Artistic Director and Principal Conductor till his early death.

ARAM KATANYAN (1926-1998)

Conductor, pedagogue, People’s Artist of RA
Worked with Armenian Philharmonic Orchestra as the Artistic Director and Principal Conductor in 1970-1973.

Aram Katanyan graduated from Yerevan Komitas State Conservatory class of Constantine Saradjian in 1950. He has been the conductor of the Radio Symphonic Orchestra in Sverdlovsk. Since 1958 has been a conductor at Yerevan Opera Theatre, from 1964 to 1970 and from 1974 to 1982 has been the Principal Conductor of the same theatre. He staged I. Stravinsky’s Opera-Oratorio “Oedipus Rex”, L. Bernstein’s Musical Drama “Westside Story”, Vincenzo Bellini’s Opera “Norma”, Jan Carlo Menotti’s Opera “Consul”, as well as Aram Khachaturian’s “Spartacus”, Ed. Hovhannisyan’s “Eternal Idol”, Grigor Yeghiazaryan’s “The Lake of Dreams” and “Ara the Beautiful and Shamiram”, Alexander Arutiunian’s “Sayat Nova” and many other works.
For the years of the work with the APO Katanyan presented Mahler’s Symphony No.4, “Harold in Italy” Symphony by Mahler, modern works by European, Russian and Armenian composers. On November 5, 1970 the newly laced organ at Aram Khachaturian Concert Hall was presented for the first time with performing of Symphony No.3 by Aram Khachaturian.

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