Actor John Malkovich Visits Dzidzernagapert, Meets with Armenia’s President

American actor, director, and producer John Malkovich at the eternal flame of the Armenian Genocide Memorial Complex (Photo: AGMI)
American actor, director, and producer John Malkovich at the eternal flame of the Armenian Genocide Memorial Complex (Photo: AGMI)

American actor, director, and producer John Malkovich at the eternal flame of the Armenian Genocide Memorial Complex (Photo: AGMI)

Malkovich to Perform at Fifth Aram Khachaturian International Festival in Yerevan

YEREVAN (Armenian Weekly)— American actor, director, and producer John Malkovich, who is in Yerevan to perform at the fifth Aram Khachaturian International Festival, visited the Armenian Genocide Museum-Institute (AGMI) and met with Armenian President Serzh Sarkisian on Tuesday.

Malkovich was accompanied by Sergey Smbatyan, the artistic director and chief conductor of the State Youth Orchestra of Armenia, with whom the Hollywood star will perform at the opening of the festival.

AGMI Deputy Director Lusine Abrahamyan briefed the guest on the history of the Armenian Genocide, after which Malkovich signed the museum’s guestbook. He later laid flowers at the eternal fire and paid tribute to the memory of Armenian Genocide victims with a moment of silence.

AGMI Acting Director Suren Manukyan also presented Malkovich with former AGMI Director Hayk Demoyan’s book, The Coverage of the Armenian Genocide on the Front Pages of the World Press, as well as Aurora’s Road: Odyssey of Armenian Genocide Survivor, authored by Demoyan and Lusine Abrahamyan. Manukyan then accompanied the actor to the Armenian Genocide Memorial Complex (Dzidzernagapert).

John Malkovich and Serge Sarkisian (Photo: Press Service of the President of Armenia)

John Malkovich and Serge Sarkisian (Photo: Press Service of the President of Armenia)

On the same day, Malkovich met with Armenian President Serzh Sarkisian at the Presidential Palace in Yerevan. During their meeting, the President said it was a “great pleasure” to host the talented artist in a country “that deeply values the power of art” and the people of which have been able to create an incredible cultural heritage and make unique contributions to the development of global civilization.

“I know the Armenian audience will have the privilege to enjoy your performance, which will forever be imprinted on their minds,” Sarkisian said, according to his press service. The President also expressed hope that Malkovich will have the chance to know Armenia and its rich legacy better.

In turn, Malkovich said he is looking forward to his performance for the Armenian audience and hopes they will like it.

Malkovich will be performing the “Report on the Blind” chapter from Ernesto Sabato’s On Heroes and Tombs novel and the Concerto for Piano and Orchestra by Alfred Schnittke with the State Youth Orchestra of Armenia.

“We presented this composition in Seoul for the first time, with [the] Korean Chamber Orchestra, headed by conductor Sergey Smbatyan. We recently had a tour in Europe. Sergey, pianist Anastasya Terenkova, and I had concerts in Argentine,” Malkovich noted during his introductory press conference in Yerevan on Monday.

During the press conference, the Hollywood star added that he had friends of Armenian origin in many countries and noted that he was looking forward to seeing Armenia. Malkovich also confessed that he is not too familiar with Armenian history. “I know about [the Armenian] Genocide. What can I say about it? People are capable of terrible actions,” Malkovich said.

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