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Armenian Lullabies and Love Songs - A Vocal Workshop with Hasmik Hartutyunyan

  • Silk Road House 1944 University Avenue Berkeley, CA, 94704 United States (map)

"Lullabies guide a person throughout their entire life. In the beginning, they are sung to you, later, you are the one who sings... in this way, the cosmic melody of love and affection continues forever." - Hasmik Harutyunyan

One of Armenia's leading folk singers, Hasmik Harutyunyan is world-renowned for her work with Yerevan's Shoghaken Ensemble and for her mellifluous renditions of Armenian lullabies, one of the most ancient and evocative genres in Armenian music. Her quietly passionate interpretations of lullabies from historical villages across the Armenian plateau offer a mesmerizing glimpse at a lost world. She draws strength and inspiration from her ancestors in the province of Mush in Historic Armenia, especially her grandmother, Mafo, who sang to her as a child. In addition to songs sung by her family, Hasmik learned many of the lullabies in her repertoire from old women who had emigrated from Anatolia to eastern Armenia before or during the Armenian massacres and genocide of 1915, as well as from their descendants and old song collections.

Hasmik Harutyunyan's first "Armenian Lullabies" CD (Traditional Crossroads) was praised in a New York Times review as "The best Armenian recording worldwide". This workshop celebrates the release of "Ororotsayin", Harutyunyan's new book and CD anthology of 57 lullabies, most never previously recorded, from Historical Armenia. It also commemorates the 150th anniversary of the birth of the Armenian monk, composer, and folk song collector/preserver, Komitas Vardapet.

Harutyunyan's "Ororotsayin" book and CD will be available for purchase at the workshop.

Interested singers of all levels of experience and genders are welcome.

This project is supported, in part, by grants from WESTAF TourWest, and the Cultural Ministry of Armenia.