USC Friends of Armenian Music to Honor Audrey Babakhanian Gregor

The USC Friends of Armenian Music will be honoring Audrey Babakhanian Gregor at a luncheon to be held on February 28, 2009 at the Beverly Hills Hotel in Beverly Hills, California.

Audrey Babakhanian Gregor is one of the Founding Members of USC Friends of Armenian Music and will be recognized for her 30 years of outstanding dedicated service. The luncheon will also celebrate the 30th Anniversary of USC Friends of Armenian Music which was conceived and established for the purpose of advancing the knowledge, preservation, and presentation of the rich Armenian musical heritage.

Despite being involved in their family business, Gregor has devoted her time and energy to the goals and objectives of the organization. She is a Past President (three times), and was instrumental in the inception and development of the “Armenian Music Collection” in the USC Doheny Library with the help of Dr. William Thomson, the then Dean of the USC School of Music.

Her everlasting love for music is demonstrated through her involvement and commitment in helping young Armenian music students at the USC Thornton School of Music to rise to their highest potential. She established the Audrey Babakhanian Gregor Scholarship Award Endowment Fund in 1999 which through the years has helped many Armenian students achieve their goals.

Gregor is an active participant and volunteer in both the Armenian and American community. She has held many positions in the International Committee of the Los Angeles Philharmonic Association, particularly serving as their favorite historian for the last fifteen years. In 1981-82 she received the John Connell Trophy for her exemplary service as Chairman of the Season Tickets. Her other volunteer activities include: Board Member of the Beverly Hills Community Orchestra; Founding Member of the Armenian Symphony Music Association; Board Member of the Armenian International Women’s Association; an active member of the Westside Guild of the Ararat Home; a member and Chair of a Christmas event at St. Peter Armenian Church; hosted and Chaired various activities of the Armenian Professional Society; Honorary Member and supporter of the Armenian Society of Los Angeles and Honorary Member of the Alliance Francoise of Los Angeles.

Mirella Ventress, Editor of the Monthly Newsletter of the International Committee of the Philharmonic Association, states “She has earned a reputation as an elegant and generous hostess by holding events for her many organizations and committees in her beautiful Beverly Hills residence. The Gregor home is a showcase for their rich collection of items from their travels all over the world, and the outside reveals her passion for gardening.”

Taking piano lessons in early childhood, Gregor continued her studies at Pepperdine Univeristy studying music and maintaining her devotion to the international field of music. Gregor %u218slongtime dream and vision has been to develop a musical education exchange program between the USC Thornton School of Music and Yerevan Komidas State Conservatory. Her desire has been acknowledged and approved by Dr. Sergey Sarajyan, Principal of the Komidas State Conservatory in Yerevan and Dr. Robert Cutietta, Dean of the USC Thornton School of Music. She is seeking the support of those interested in helping USC Friends of Armenian Music establish this distinctive program.

The President of the Organization, Artemis Belian Bedros, states that the program will be outstanding. It will feature current and past scholarship recipients, most of whom have distinguished themselves as musicians of international stature. Included in the program will be the award winning Elixir Trio with Dr. Lucy Nargizian, pianist: Garik Terzian, cellist and Samuel Chilingarian, violinist. Additionally performing will be Vatche Mankarian, pianist; Shoushik Barsoumian, soprano; Pepron Pilibosian, pianist; Sarkis Kazarian, pianist; Angela Cholakian, pianist; Marine Ter Kazarian, soprano; and Salpy Kerkonian, flutist.

For more information, please call: Rose Ketchoyan (818) 788-5138 or Hilda Fidanian (818) 249-3330. Tickets are $85.00 per person and checks should be made payable to the USC Friends of Armenian Music. Donations to benefit the Musical education exchange program between the USC Thornton School of Music and the Yerevan Komidas State Conservatory should also be made payable to the USC Friends of Armenian Music. Please mail checks to Rose Ketchoyan, 4111 Sepulveda Boulevard, Sherman Oaks, CA 91302.

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