Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Armenian Artist- Mher Mkrtchyan

One of many statues in Armenia dedicated to Actor Mkrtchyan, this one is in Gyumri

Armenian Actor Mher Mkrtchyan

T. Sargsyan put flowers at M. Mkrtchyan’s statue
By at 28 December, 2010, 4:18 pm
Armenian great artist Mher Mkrtchyan died on December 29, 1993. Today, on the day of grand artist’s day, Armenian PM Tigran Sargsyan visited the Pantheon after Komitas and put flowers at Mher Mkrtchyan’s statue, press service of Armenian Government reports.
Remind, M. Mkrtchyan was born in Leninakan. He studied in Leninakan Art College and Theatre Studio, then finished at the Acting Department of Yerevan Institute of Fine Arts and Theatre. Since 1953, he has performed in the Sundukyan Drama Theatre of Yerevan. He also directed many successful productions, best of them Maxim Gorky’s “The Lower Depths”. His cinema career began in 1955.
His famous roles in Rolan Bykov’s “Aybolit-66″ (1966), Leonid Gaidai’s “Kidnapping, Caucasian Style” (1966), and Georgi Daneliya’s “Mimino” (1977) earned him the reputation of one of the leading comedy actors in the Soviet Union. But that reputation sometimes overshadowed his real talent and emotional depth which he put into his roles in such classics of Armenian cinema as “Yerankyuni” (“Triangle”) (1967), “Menq enq, mer sarere” (“We, Our Mountains”) (1969) , “Hayrik” (“Father”) (1973), “Nahapet” (1977), “Hin oreri yerge” (“Old Days’ Song”) (1982), “Mer mankutyan tangon” (“Tango of Our Childhood”) (1985). Among his many awards was the USSR State Prize for 1978. He died in Yerevan, Armenia, in 1993.

Personal life and death Even though he was known as a comedic actor, Mkrtchyan's personal life was filled with tragedy. His first wife, Donara Mkrtchyan, became mentally ill and was sent to a mental institution for the rest of her life. Mkrtchyan became a single parent of two young children. His son inherited his mother’s mental illness. Thousands of people attended the funeral of their beloved actor.

Thirty Three (1965)
Kidnapping, Caucasian Style (1966)
Mimino (1977)

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Armenian Artists-System of the Down SOAD to re unite for tour 2011

Serj Tanikian of System of the Down, SOAD
Armenian-Americans SYSTEM OF A DOWN are to reunite for a series of shows in Europe next year (11).

The acclaimed quartet announced an indefinite hiatus in 2006 and haven't worked together as a band since.

But, in a post online, the group reveals it has booked 10 European shows in 2011.

The statement on the band's website reads, "We have no master plan. We are playing these shows simply because we want to play together again."

Bassist Shavo Odadjian recently told Hustler magazine the bandmates agreed to an indefinite hiatus to stave off a permanent split after success started to get the better of them.

He said, "We won a Grammy and we had two number one records. We were making a lot of loot (money). Then some people within the group of four brothers started seeing things differently... and their actions made the reactions of others pretty unbrotherly-like.

"Ten years ago these four motherf**kers were getting paid nothing while travelling in a 10-seat RV for seven months, following Slayer around.

"Flash forward: We are now in a situation where we are making so much money a show that I can't even say. We're being flown around, catered to and being treated like royalty.

"All of a sudden band members are having problems financially... (and) fighting about, 'I want my style of music to be this and that.'"

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Vanessa Kachadurian- Vladimir Arzumanyan wins 2010 Junior Eurovision Award

Voters and juries from 14 countries have made up their mind and it’s Vladimir Arzumanyan from Armenia to win the 8th edition of the Junior Eurovision Song Contest! Congratulations!!

Tonight, the show opened with Ksenia Sitnik (winner of the 2005 contest) and Alexey Zhigalkovich (winner in 2007) and Alexander Rybak (winner of the 2009 Eurovision Song Contest).

But most of all, it featured the 14 young stars representing their countries, making them the real stars of this year’s Junior Eurovision Song Contest!

After a very exciting voting it was Vladimir Arzumanyan from Armenia to win the 8th edition of the Junior Eurovision Song Contest, broadcast from the capital of Belarus – Minsk, by just one point
Above is from Armenian Pulse

Yesterday 12/21/2010 in the cultural center of the police was organized a meeting with the winner of Junior Eurovision 2010 song contest Vladimir Arzumanyan.
The guests of the cultural center of the police were the children from the orphanage of “Mari Izmiryan”, “Sos” and “Zatik” as well as the children of the police officers. Together with Vladimir Arzumanyan they sang the song “Mama” that brought victory to Armenia and danced with children from the “Nkaragir” (“Description”) dance assembly, the press service of the Police informs.

The head of the RA Police Alik Sargsyan by the initiation of who the event was organized wished success to the young singer who had presented our country with honor and gave him a souvenir.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Armenians lost our HERO J. Michael Hagopian founder of Armenian Film Foundation

J. Michael Hagopian

Armenians lost our pioneer of Armenian film and documentaries of our history! Jacob leaves behind an extensive library of interesting documentaries and historical documentation. I strongly urge you all to order a flm from the Armenian Film Foundation.

Thousand Oaks, Calif. - Armenian-American documentary filmmaker J. Michael Hagopian, whose 70 educational and documentary films have won more than 160 national and international awards, including two Emmy nominations, died Dec. 10 in his Thousand Oaks, Calif., home. He was 97.

Funeral services will be held Wednesday, Dec. 15, at 2 p.m. in Samuelson Chapel on the campus of California Lutheran University, 60 W. Olsen Rd., Thousand Oaks.

Hagopian was a Genocide survivor who dedicated his life to the visual documentation of the Turkish extermination of 1.5 million Armenians in 1915. Over a 40-year period, he filmed nearly 400 interviews of survivors of and witnesses to the Armenian Genocide, traveling around the world to record their accounts in 10 languages. He established the Armenian Film Foundation in 1979 as a non-profit, educational, and cultural organization dedicated to the documentation in motion pictures of Armenian heritage and life.

During the past several years, his mission had been to preserve the film footage of those eyewitness interviews. On April 13, 2010, he and his wife, Antoinette Hagopian, and the Armenian Film Foundation signed an historic agreement with The USC Shoah Foundation Institute for the preservation and dissemination of the Genocide testimonies on the internet.

On Dec. 9, 2010, Hagopian was to meet Steven Spielberg, Shoah's founder, at the foundation's Ambassadors for Humanity banquet but was unable to attend because of a cold. Spielberg personally expressed his support for the Armenians to two of Hagopian's colleagues on the AFF board who attended the event, and Hagopian's work was acknowledged at the gala. He passed away before he would have received a report of the evening, but his legacy will no doubt long endure.

Born in Kharpert in Historic Armenia in 1913, Hagopian survived the Genocide because his mother hid him in a well behind the family home. His father was spared because he was an important medical doctor, and the family left Turkey for Boston, Mass., in 1922, eventually settling in Fresno, Calif., in 1927.

Hagopian attended Fresno State University, transferring to UC Berkeley, where he received his bachelor's and master's degrees in political science. He went on to earn another masters and a Ph.D. in Government and International Relations from Harvard University. After serving in the U.S. Army Air Corps during World War II, he taught at several universities, including Banares Hindu University, India; American University of Beirut, Lebanon; UCLA, and Oregon State University. While teaching, he discovered a lack of good films to show his classes and concluded that he could produce better documentaries.

After completing two years of graduate work in cinema at the University of Southern California, Hagopian embarked on a new career as writer, filmmaker and producer. In 1952 he founded Atlantis Productions, Inc., and as its president created award-winning films for instructional and informational use in the classroom and on television. His earlier films were about the peoples and cultures of India, Nigeria, the Middle East as well as Native Americans and include the well-respected Jerusalem - Center of Many Worlds and Asian Earth, which won several film festival awards.

During his early filmmaking expeditions, Hagopian trekked 1,500 miles to the source of the Ganges River, becoming the first man to film in color the entire length of the river to the holy source. For this and other remarkable adventures, he was invited to join the prestigious Explorer's Club, New York, and Adventurer's Club, Los Angeles.

In 1961, he married Antoinette Hobden, and they settled in Thousand Oaks in 1963. A major force in the formative years of Thousand Oaks, Hagopian was active in its incorporation as a city and served on many civic committees. In 1990 he laid the groundwork for the establishment of a sister-city relationship between Thousand Oaks and Spitak, a city in Armenia that he visited and filmed after the devastating earthquake that hit the country on Dec. 7, 1988.

In addition to his local involvement, one of Hagopian's main interests was to help create permanent Armenian studies programs in major universities in America. As the initial West Coast member of the National Association of Armenian Studies and Research, he worked to endow the first two chairs in the United States, at Harvard in 1959 and at UCLA in 1965.

Armenian community leaders approached Hagopian about making a film to mark the 50th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide. In 1965 he produced the film Where Are My People, which was aired on KCOP TV in Los Angeles. It was then that he realized that the witnesses to the Armenian Genocide were fast dying, and he began filming survivors. He made 17 documentaries about Armenian heritage, culture and history. In 1976, he received two Emmy nominations for the writing and production of The Forgotten Genocide, which aired on KCET.

The last film Hagopian wrote, directed and produced was The River Ran Red, a 58-minute documentary that opened the Eighth Annual Arpa International Film Festival on Oct. 24, 2008, at the Egyptian Theatre in Hollywood, Calif. The River Ran Red, the third film in a trilogy about the Genocide, was voted Best International Historical Documentary by the New York International Film & Video Festival in 2009 and won many other awards.

Several of Hagopian's films were produced under grants from the U.S. Office of Education and the Ethnic Heritage Program, the MacArthur Foundation, California Endowment for the Humanities, Milken Foundation and California State Department of Education.

Hagopian received numerous honors, including Jewish World Watch's "I Witness" Award for dedicating his professional life to chronicling the Armenian Genocide, the Arpa Lifetime Achievement Award, and the Armin T. Wegner Humanitarian Award. The Armenian National Committee has honored him as Man of the Year twice, once in 1984 and again in 2000.

"Dr. Hagopian was a vanguard of the Armenian Cause - a true inspiration to all touched by his art, his genius and his commitment," said ANCA Executive Director Aram Hamparian. "Through his decades of documentary work, the voices of Genocide survivors resounded from generation to generation - setting the groundwork for our community's ongoing political and legal efforts to secure justice for this crime against humanity."

Congressman Adam Schiff (D-CA) noted, "I was blessed with the opportunity to work closely with J. Michael Hagopian, bringing his films to Capitol Hill and on a variety issues of importance to the local Armenian community, and I was terribly saddened to learn that he passed away late last week. Dr. Hagopian's documentary films on the Armenian Genocide are a path-breaking work that will help inform generations to come of the facts of the first genocide of the last century. He will be deeply missed. As they say in Armenian, may God enlighten his soul and bring comfort to his loved ones."

"Through his life and career, Dr. J Michael Hagopian is proof that a single person can change humankind's understanding of itself," said Los Angeles City Councilmember Paul Krekorian. "He is proof that we can rise above intolerance and ensure future generations are armed with the information needed to combat bigotry in all forms."

Hagopian is survived by his wife, Antoinette; children James Michael, Maui, Hawaii; Joanne, Berkeley, Calif.; David, Thousand Oaks; and William, Honolulu, Hawaii; and five grandchildren.

In lieu of flowers donations may be made to the Armenian Film Foundation or the Conejo Valley Historical Society. Donations may be sent c/o Armenian Film Foundation, 2219 Thousand Oaks Blvd., Suite 292, Thousand Oaks, California 91362, or made online at

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Armenian Art and Artists-Principal Dancer Davit Karapetyan

Davit Jan is a Principal Dancer of the San Francisco Ballet (the oldest ballet company in the USA) fellow Armenian (Davit's fiance) Vanessa Zahorian is also a Principal Dancer and VERY beautiful. More on her later.

Watch the magic of Davit, his strength, execution and technique!!! Dancers from Armenia are trained very well. For you Ballet beginners- Principal Dancer is the highest rank in a company over the Soloists.

Armenian Art and Artists- Famous photographer Yousuf Karsh

Yousuf Karsh (1908-2002) is one of the masters of 20th century photography. His body of work includes portraits of statesmen, artists, musicians, authors, scientists, and men and women of accomplishment. His extraordinary and unique portfolio presents the viewer with an intimate and compassionate view of humanity.
Karsh’s official web site is here:

Armenian Art and Artists- Eva Rivas at 2010 Eurovision

Called Armenia's Angelina Jolie, this 6 ft tall beauty can sing. I remember seeing her in a church performance when she was about 12 and she was taller then the boys with a voice that was as beautiful as she is.
She represented Armenia proud in Eurovision 2010 finishing in the top 10.

Armenian Art and Artists- Mihran Rap Singer and Dancer raps "Armenia"

Mihran can really dance, I remember him as a kid and being one of the only boys in a dance class. He is a performer and a good kid.
Some of his videos have over 100,000 views to it. Madonna's favorite dancer

Armenian Art and Artists- Emmy sings with Mihran

This is Emmy's song from last year with Mihran. They lost as Armenia's Eurovision contest 2010 to Eva Rivas. In many people's opinion they lost because the song was too hip hop and not traditional sounding. Eva ironically sang the beautiful "Apricot Stone". Mihran as you all know is a back up dancer for many rap stars and for Madonna. More on Mihran and Eva Rivas later. We will be hearing much more from them.

Vanessa Kachadurian-Emmy picked to represent Armenia in Eurovision contest

Emmy chosen to represent Armenia- Just announced on Eurovision Web site's+Emmy+for+Armenia!

It's Emmy for Armenia!
Above: Emmy. Source: Emmy
Emmy - Official Website
Yerevan, Armenia - Yesterday, the Armenian public broadcaster AMPTV held a press conference to announce the representative for the 2011 Eurovision Song Contest: Emmy, one of the biggest stars of her country, will be flying the Armenian flag in Düsseldorf!

Unlike 2010, when a public national final was held to pick both the singer and song to represent Armenia in the Eurovision Song Contest, the representative for 2011 was internally selected. On a press conference on Saturday, December 11th, Alexan Harutyunyan, the Chairman of the Council of the Armenian Public Television and Radio Company, announced that the Art Council of the broadcaster had chosen Emmy to take part in Europe's Favourite TV Show.

Emmy is one of the most popular singers of the small Caucasian country. She is the daughter of Nadezhda Sargsyan, a famous Armenian singer, and Davit Bejanyan, a sculptor and jazz pianist. Thus, she grew up in a family where music and art has always played a key role, so it seemed quite natural that she would become an artist, too. Emmy got famous already at a very young age, and both as a member of the music group Hayer and, later, as a solo singer, she has toured the whole world and won several prizes.

Last year, Emmy already participated in the Armenian national selection, and she reached the second place with the modern pop song Hey (Let Me Hear You Say), which she performed together with Mihran. Now it's finally time for her to rock the stage of the Eurovision Song Contest! Her song will be selected in a televised national final, for which songwriters and producers were asked to send in their suggested entries.

What do you think about the Armenian choice? Tell us below!