The Met’s Presents ‘Evocations of Armenia’ at The New York Society Library March 16

Actor Nora Armani and cellist David Bakamjian lead a cultural journey through the spirit of Armenia in the company of poets, composers, folk songs, and sacred chants in English and Armenian. This presentation premiered to a sold-out audience in the Met Museum’s Grace Rainey Rogers Auditorium in 2007.

The event will take place on Tuesday, March 16, 2010, at 6:30 p.m. at the Library.

The New York Society Library is located at 53 East 79th Street (just east of Madison Avenue; 6 train to 77th Street).

Ticket information is available at www.nysoclib.org/notes/2010/evocations_armenia.html. Library nonmembers and members are welcome; nonmembers should register by phone at 212-288-6900 x230. There is a $20/person fee. This event is generously supported by the Estate of Marian O. Naumburg.

This combination of powerful spoken word and haunting solo cello is highlighted by the story of the enchanted Dove Abbey by Hovhannes Toumanyan (widely considered Armenia’s greatest poet); the music of Komitas and Alan Hovhaness, the sacred chants of Sharagans, the poignant legend of Akhtamar, among other pieces.

Actor Nora Armani has an international list of theatre and film credits. Her award-winning original performances have toured internationally in six languages to such venues as the Sydney Opera House, the Hirshhorn Museum, the Cairo Opera House, the Riverside Studios (London), La Cirée National Theatre in Marseilles and the Sundukyan National Theatre of Armenia. Her films include The Doors of Denis, Voisins Voisines, The New Eve, Last Station, Haifa, and Labyrinth, for which she won Armenia’s Best Actress award. She holds undergraduate and masters degrees from the American University in Cairo and the University of London. More information on her is available at www.noraarmani.com.

Cellist David Bakamjian performs regularly as a recitalist, chamber player, recording artist and as a member of several New York area ensembles. He has performed at New York ‘s premiere concert halls, appeared several times on National Public Radio and WQXR (NY), and was a winner or finalist in four international chamber music competitions. He has appeared as soloist with the Allentown Symphony, Philharmonia Virtuosi, the Beijing Symphony, the Bachanalia Festival Orchestra, and the Lehigh University Symphony Orchestra. He performs with the American Symphony Orchestra and is principal cellist of the Berkshire Opera and the New York Grand Opera. Mr. Bakamjian is a founding member of Brooklyn Baroque (flute, cello and harpsichord) of critical acclaim by the American Record Guide. He also performs on baroque cello with Concert Royal, the American Classical Orchestra, Gotham Chamber Opera and the Long Island Baroque Ensemble.

The New York Society Library was founded in 1754, and is the city’s oldest library. In the eighteenth century, an organization labeled “Society” meant that it was open to all-available to everyone throughout society. The Library is open to all for reading, reference, and most events, with circulation and other services by subscription. The beautiful landmarked building dates from 1917 and includes reading rooms, spaces for study, stacks, and an exhibition gallery. The Library has approximately 275,000 volumes and hosts a variety of special events, reading groups, workshops, as well as the New York City Book Awards.

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