Author Archives: Elise Kalfayan

Glendale Arts Mobilizing to Keep Historic Alex Theatre

Glendale Arts, which books and stages events including a city-wide annual Armenian Genocide Commemoration, is now mobilizing to keep the historic Alex Theatre as its premier venue and Glendale’s cultural center. California’s closure of all redevelopment agencies has hit the theatre with budget and ownership threats. City officials enacted zoning changes in July to prevent any attempt by the state to claim and sell the property.

Glendale Memories, National Spirit: Now I Know in Part an Inspiring and Familiar Memoir

“I am certainly one who appreciates all that America has to offer,” writes Glendale native Paul Ignatius in his personal memoir Now I Know in Part (2011). His maternal grandfather, Avedis Jamgochian, was likely the first Armenian to purchase property in Glendale (in 1911), and Ignatius was likely the first Armenian-American student at Herbert Hoover High School. His story spans the late 19th through 21st centuries, yet is so familiar to those like me whose families made the same journeys and ended up in the same places.

Libraries of the Global Village: Diaspora Resources in Glendale, Jerusalem, Yerevan

BY ELISE KALFAYAN The global village created by the world wide web gives the Armenian Diaspora great opportunities to connect, but it also poses challenges to identity. May’s Facebook IPO in some ways reflects the village’s condition today – its financial prospects are questionable and its loyalties indefinable. In contrast, libraries throughout the world are

A Vital Link to History, Culture, Memory: Library Programs in California Threatened by Budget Crisis

Libraries are quiet places; perhaps that is why the news hardly mentioned that in addition to slashing funds for higher education and home health care, California’s recent lower revenue report triggered $16 million in cuts eliminating all funding for the California Library Services Act, the state literacy program, and the Public Library Foundation.

Lives of Service: Three Generations, Confronting and Commemorating Genocide

Luther Eskijian, founder of the Ararat-Eskijian Museum and my grandmother’s cousin, had a focused, intense character. Only later in life did I learn that his father, Rev. Hovhanness Eskijian, had been just as driven, serving as a pastor in Aleppo during the Genocide, bravely directing an underground network rescuing Armenians destined for Der Zor, and dying of illness and exhaustion the day before authorities had planned to execute him.

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