“Komitas Vardapet and Hovhannes Tumanyan; 150-year-old Witnesses of the Armenian Genocide” Exhibition

2019-04-23

An exhibition entitled “Komitas Vardapet and Hovhannes Tumanyan; 150-year-old witnesses of the Armenian Genocide” opened at the Armenian Genocide Museum Institute, which is dedicated to the 150th anniversary of the great Armenian intellectuals. RA Minister of Education and Science Arayik Harutyunyan, who was present at the exhibition, noted that all the institutions commemorated the 150th anniversary celebrations of H. Tumanyan and Komitas, in one way or another. “This exhibition is important because Tumanyan and Komitas were involved in the Genocide. The impact of the Genocide on Tumanyan's and Komitas' lives and works are shown here. It is symbolic that the exhibition opens on the eve of the next anniversary of the Genocide and I am sure that many of our compatriots will also be present at this museum tomorrow and will get to know the event,” the Minister noted, adding that jubilee events will ongoing. The main events dedicated to the 150th anniversary of Komitas will be held in September. According to Arayik Harutyunyan, all the museums must implement educational programs. “Students in other countries participate in the educational programs of museums, and we want to follow their examples”, noted the Minister. The exhibition, where the paths of Tumanyan and Komitas intersected in the context of the Genocide, had two major components; the friendly and creative connections of two great individuals, and their direct relationship to the Armenian Genocide and its grave consequences. The exhibition, which was in Armenian and English, showed eight original materials from the Armenian Genocide Museum Institute, different museums and centers of archives. For the first time, a small part of a video is shown about a survivor of the Armenian Genocide who was from Bitlis, Aghavni Mkrtchyan. The video is about an organization, founded by Hovhannes Tumanyan, that assisted refugees in Echmiadzin, in 1915. Another showcase was the bead of the intellectual Varderes Atanesyan from Chankr, who was exiled and later killed in April, 1915. The bead, which came down to us, was made during the exile. On it are engraved the names of 99 other exiled intellectuals. It is worth mentioning that Komitas Vardapet's name was the first of those engraved. During the exhibition, the unfinished opera by Komitas composed for Tumanyan's "Anush" poem could be heard. The music was performed by Araqs Mansuryan. Some sketches from the well-known Armenian painter Sargis Muradyan's "Komitas" series have also been exhibited.

Later, the fir tree planting ceremony took place at the Memorial Park in commemoration of Hovhannes Tumanyan and Komitas Vardapet's 150th anniversary jubilees.

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