Culture 19:27 07/09/2021 Armenia

Bravo and bis: Armenian State Symphony Orchestra and famous violinist Sergey Khachatryan perform at Dubai Opera

Author Hasmik Hakobyan

The air was filled with high-quality Armenian music sounds at the Dubai Opera on 5 September. The Armenian State Symphony Orchestra (ASSO), led by its Artistic Director and Principal Conductor Sergey Smbatyan, and world-renowned violinist Sergey Khachatryan brilliantly performed prominent Armenian composer Aram Khachaturian's Violin Concerto at the luxurious Dubai Opera hall.

The performance drew shouts of “Bravo!” from the audience. For a long time, the foreign audience did not allow the soloist and the conductor to leave the stage. In response to the applause, Sergey Khachatryan performed "Havun, Havun" by Gregory of Narek, filling the Dubai Opera with medieval Armenian melodies.

Aram Khachaturian wrote the concerto in 1940. It has been performed on different stages of the world, being greatly loved by audiences.

Speaking to, Sergey Khachatryan, thanks also to whom Armenia and Armenian culture are known, confessed that he loves Khachaturian’s Violin Concerto and has performed the composition in different countries of the world.

"I am glad that we can participate in such an international festival with the Armenian State Symphony Orchestra today as well and present the masterpieces of Armenian composers to foreign audiences," he said.

Asked whether the nationality of a musician performing Khachaturian's Violin Concerto makes any difference, the violinist said there is probably a difference, adding maybe the Armenians, being familiar with the Armenian music and carrying it in their genes, perform it differently.

"If you grew up listening to Armenian classical music, you are familiar with national music, you have those elements of folk music in your mind, you understand it better, but of course, foreigners can also perform the concerto brilliantly," Khachatryan said.

Referring to further programs, the violinist said that there are no specific concerts planned yet, but he plans to come to Armenia by the end of the year to perform for art lovers. Sergey Khachatryan did not unveil other plans, saying that they are still in his mind and are yet to be brought to life.

Sergey Smbatyan said in turn that the orchestra has performed at the Dubai Opera numerous times. "A long-awaited concert with Sergey Khachatryan was held in Dubai. We have performed here a lot, every concert is unique and this concert is no exception," he said.

Speaking about the InClassica Festival, Sergey Smbatyan said that it is one of the biggest music events, adding participation in such a festival is a great achievement for the orchestra.

"I think that participating in such an international festival is a success. The orchestras performing at the festival are among the top 20 symphony orchestras of the world and, I think, it is a great achievement for the Armenian State Symphony Orchestra to perform here with them,” Smbatyan said.

In addition to participating in the festival, the participants of the final rounds of the “Classic Piano” International Piano Competition held within the framework of the InClassica Festival shared the stage with the ASSO, which, according to its head, was a responsible task.

It’s worth noting that Sergey Smbatyan will conduct 10 concerts with other orchestras and soloists within the framework of the InClassica Festival.

To note, the concert of the Armenian State Symphony Orchestra and Sergey Khachatryan took place within the framework of the 10th InClassica International Music Festival in Dubai. The special 10th-anniversary edition of the festival is organized by the European Foundation for Support of Culture (EUFSC) in partnership with the SAMIT Event Group.

The event's Composer-In-Residence is Alexey Shor. The festival has brought together 37 outstanding musicians, 7 famous orchestras and 12 renowned conductors. The InClassica International Music Festival runs until September 26.

Photos by and Alexei Molchanovsky.


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