PostClassical Ensemble Annual Gala

THE COLOR OF POMEGRANATES: An Armenian Odyssey

PostClassical Ensemble’s 2019-2020 Armenian Festival

SAVE THE DATE: February 19, 2019 at The Embassy of the Republic of Armenia

FESTIVAL LAUNCH GALA WITH NAREK HAKHNAZARYAN

 

Kevork Mourad
Netanel Draiblate
Ambassador Grigor Hovhannissian, Honorary Diplomatic Co-Chair

For fifteen years, PostClassical Ensemble – now Ensemble-in-Residence at the Washington National Cathedral – has singularly pursued music as an instrument for mutual understanding. This has taken the form of festivals illuminating the interface between cultures; a typical example is our ongoing exploration of the impact of Indonesian gamelan and dance on the Western tradition.

As frequently, we have undertaken cross-disciplinary inquiries into the cultural history of a nation; a typical example is our ongoing “Iberian Mystics” project, tracking the confluence of Catholic, Jewish, and Islamic influences on Spanish music, literature, and visual art.

With its long and distinguished cultural heritage, and its heroic national saga of struggle and resilience, Armenia offers a rich opportunity for the kind of programming we do.

“The Color of Pomegranates” takes its title from Sergei Parajanov’s classic 1968 film, inspired by the iconic Armenian bard Sayat-Nova. A poetic meditation saturated with music, dance, and religious iconography, it celebrates the endurance of Armenian culture in the teeth of oppression and persecution.

SYNOPSIS FROM THE ARTIST: KEVORK MOURAD

Born in northeastern Syria of Armenian heritage, I – like Sayat-Nova – grew up in a culture of multilingualism and close borders. I later studied in Yerevan. I now live in Manhattan.

I love the idea of crossing borders, of traveling from place to place and easily becoming someone else—becoming a local wherever you are. In today’s climate of isolationism and xenophobia, it’s important to remember that multi-culturalism is not a new aspiration – it was a natural state that enriched everyone’s life.

My “Armenian Odyssey” production for the Washington National Cathedral, with music by Vache Sharafyan and the further participation of Narek Hakhnazaryan and other Armenian performers, will explore the idea of how Sayat-Nova, who belonged to four different cultures, took from one culture to move on and explore another, then took from the two he had and moved to the next, then carried those three into yet another place…

Using live and pre-animated drawing, and invoking Sayat-Nova’s poetry in the Armenian that was one of his languages, the piece is an exploration of how the sharing of cultures—of music and poetry—can inspire tolerance.
–Kevork Mourad

Please join us on February 19th for an unforgettable evening of Armenian & Western Composers performed by International Tchaikovsky Competition Gold Medal winner Narek Hakhnazaryan, with PostClassical Ensemble’s Concertmaster Netanel Draiblate. 

FOR INFORMATION ABOUT TABLE ATTENDANCE PLEASE CONTACT MATTHEW GARDNER AT GALA@POSTCLASSICAL.COM OR (240) 630-4322