LOS ANGELES—Innovate Armenia, the flagship program of the USC Institute of Armenian Studies, will come to USC on Saturday, May 18, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
The one-of-a-kind event is a festival of ideas, music and action, featuring talks by young scholars on ancestral roots, post-revolution leaders from Armenia, art, music, and Armenian beer.
The program is themed around the concept of “OLD ROUTES TO NEW ROOTS.” The Old Routes are those that take us through the historical Armenian lands. Scholars will address issues of geography, genealogy, memory, identity. The New Roots are those being put down in the Republic of Armenia – the new Armenia. Scholars, policy experts and senior members of government will talk about goals, strategies and challenges at this new and transitional time in Armenian history.
The popular music stage will feature innovative musicians from the Armenian world, including the legendary Richard Hagopian with his son and grandsons, and groups from Beirut and Armenia. Last year’s chess platform was a hit and this year, too, grandmasters will be engaging the public in games. Traditions of beer making and coffee drinking will be showcased, with samples and stories.
Nearly 4,000 people from throughout California attended Innovate Armenia in 2017, and another 20,000 watched the day’s events Live, both in Armenian and in English.
“We are proud that INNOVATE ARMENIA has become the destination event that feeds people’s intellectual curiosity and appetite for fun and fulfillment. This year, especially, we are looking forward to the stories that scholars policy makers have to tell about how to build a new Armenia, without forgetting about reconnecting families and traditions after the rupture of the Genocide,” says Salpi Ghazarian, director of the USC Institute of Armenian Studies.