LOS ANGELES–Tens of thousands flocked to the Hollywood Bowl Sunday evening for the “Spirit of Armenia” concert, the first-ever night completely dedicated to Armenian music and culture.
The evening featured renowned Armenian artists, and the colorful costumes and dancing that symbolize the spirit Armenia. This evening’s host was Tom Schnabel, KCRW personality and the Philharmonic’s Program Advisor for World Music.
Spirit of Armenia! brought together a large group of distinguished local and international Armenian artists. Acclaimed leaders of modern Armenian pop music, Adiss, Andy, Silva Hakobyan and Sako, made their Hollywood Bowl debuts. Musician and composer Djivan Gasparyan performed Armenian folk music playing the duduk, the traditional woodwind instrument of Armenia. Winds of Passion, comprised of some of the most accomplished duduk players in the world today, performed. Young tenor Hovhannes Shahbazyan sang Armenian traditional folk and gousan music, and classical pianist and composer Vatch? Mankerian also performed a specially arranged composition of Armenian folk and classical repertoire. Los Angeles-based ensemble, Element Band, which draws its inspiration from widespread and multicultural sources, resulting in a unique Armenian "folk-fusion" sound also performed. In the second half, conductor Roma Kanyan led a special band created for this Spirit of Armenia! program.
Zvartnots Dance Ensemble and Vartan & Siranoush Gevorkian Dance Ensemble, dressed in rich, colorful costumes, performed high-energy choreography to both traditional and contemporary Armenian music.
The concert was part of KCRW’s World Festival performances organized jointly by the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra.