Charles Aznavour Turns 90

Charles Aznavour marks his 90th birthday with a performance in Berlin

PARIS—The celebrated French-Armenian singer Charles Aznavour marked his 90th birthday on Thursday. The legendary singer, songwriter, public activist, and, most recently, diplomat has written more than 800 songs, recorded more than 1,000 in French, English, German, Italian, and Spanish and sold over 100 million records in all.

Charles Aznavour was Born Chahnour Varinag Aznavourian on May 22, 1924, in Paris, the younger of two children born to Armenian immigrants, one of them, his mother, an Armenian Genocide survivor who fled to France.

Besides being one of France’s most popular and enduring singers, he is also one of the best-known French singers in the world. Aznavour is known for his unique tenor voice: clear and ringing in its upper reaches, with gravelly and profound low notes.

In 1998, Aznavour was named “Entertainer of the Century” by CNN and users of Time Online from around the globe. He was recognized as the century’s outstanding performer, with nearly 18 percent of the total vote, edging out Elvis Presley and Bob Dylan. He has sung for presidents, popes and royalty, as well as at humanitarian events, and is the founder of the charitable organization Aznavour for Armenia along with his long-time friend Levon Sayan.

In 2009, Aznavour was appointed ambassador of Armenia to Switzerland, as well as Armenia’s permanent delegate to the United Nations at Geneva. He recently started a new concert tour in 2014.

On the event of Aznavour’s birthday, Armenia’s President Serzh Sarkisian publicly congratulated the renowned singer, who is revered by Armenians around the world.

“You are a great artist, a great Armenian and a great person,” the President said in his message. “Each meeting with you is a great event for us. We are proud to be your contemporaries and to enjoy your presence, your songs and words.”

“I wish you – the most famous Armenian in the world – good health and many successes in your creative life, as well as in your social and political activities,” Sarkisian said.

Armenia’s Prime Minister Hovik Abrahamian also extended his congratulations to Aznavour, praising him as a source of inspiration.

“Your creative work and patriotic ideals have inspired and fascinated millions of people from generation to generation,” Abrahamian said in a message to Charles Aznavour. “We are proud of you as an artist and an exceptional, great Armenian, who keeps up the reputation and honor of the Armenian people all over the world. You are one of the most inspiring figures of all time who is unconditionally loved by the Armenian people.”


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  1. Hratch said:

    So let the French celebrate it. What is to the Armenians? He is and has been a star because of his French celebrity status. If he remained Armenian in culture and character or simply as Aznavourian, he would never have attained his God-like status. Let the French celebrate and eat cake in on his 90th birthday.

    • Christina said:

      Reply to Hratch.

      Of course it´s to Armenians. I would never had known as much of your history without Charles Aznavour telling. Aznavour has put Armenia on world-map and that´s great. What have you done yourself?

    • armineh said:

      Your argument is rather simplistic. You do have to take into account that though he sang in French and that is how he gained fame, that at the end he was because of his fame that he managed to gather money (donations) for Aznavour pour l’Armenie – when the earthquake happened in Armenia, and it was because of his fame that he was named Ambassador of Armenia in Switzerland …. so please open your mind a a little an d look at the matter in a positive way.

    • Sousanna said:

      Meaningless and senseless comment. What do you mean “what is to the Armenians?” Doesn’t matter where he lives. Whole world knew that he is Armenian and whole world enjoyed his songs, including Armenians. The most important he is good Armenian, he always have been proud being Armenian, never put down his nation, and all French nation applaud him as an Armenian. Living other country, not in Armenia, sometimes we feel shame about the other Armenian behavior. We need to proud of him, and we will wish to have more like him.

  2. Hratch said:

    Is there anything on record from the President or Prime Minister of Italy praising and kissing up to Frank Sinatra or Dean Martin?

    How petty and immature of our government officials to make such chummy comments about a celebrity…..just too pathetic!

    • Christina said:

      Hratch, if anyone is pathetic that´s you, are you jealous, or what? Then tell us all, WHAT have YOU done, some special thing, to promote or put Armenian on the world map? Anyway, I´ve never heard about you!

    • Sousanna said:

      Don’t forget he involved in politics and maybe helped our country more than the president. Who is the corrupt president comparing him. Who remembers any presidents, but the famous singers, composers, actors, writers, and etc everybody will remember. Do you know who was the president Frank Sinatra or Dean Marin time or who cares about them but until now you can listen their song with pleasure.

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  4. Christina said:

    90 times CONGRATULATIONS, Monsieur Charles Aznavour(ian)!

  5. Sousanna said:

    HAPPY BIRTHDAY, I as an Armenian musician, I am proud of you.