Armenian General Benevolent Union-Armenian Youth Association’s “Vahram Papazian” theater group of Beirut was on tour in Armenia from July 3-10 as part of the RA Diaspora Ministry’s “One Nation, One Culture” festival. On July 4, the group presented Hakob Paronian’s “Shoghokort” (“The Flatterer”) in the packed hall of the Paronian State Theater of Musical Comedy in Yerevan. In charge of the production of the two-act comedy was professor Yervant Ghazanchian, who has been directing the group for the past decade. He is also the Artistic Director of the Paronian State Theater of Musical Comedy.

Tamara Poghossian, President of the “One Nation, One Culture” foundation, delivered a welcoming speech after the performance. On behalf of AGBU and AYA, Chairman of the “Vahram Papazian” theater group Trdat Avedikian thanked everyone for the warm reception of the group on their motherland. “We are proud to celebrate our 50th anniversary in Armenia and share that happiness with so many dear and honorable representatives of art and culture from my homeland”, said Mr. Avetikian. He thanked the “One Nation, One Culture” foundation, presented the Paronian Theater of Musical Comedy with souvenirs, and extended special words of gratitude to prof. Yervant Ghazanchian for his commitment to the theater group.

Sona Harutiunian, Head of the RA Culture Ministry Art Department, handed in Golden Medals to Trdat Avedikian for his contribution in strengthening theatrical and cultural ties between the Diaspora and Armenia, actor Manuel Markarian and decorator Mateos Avakian. Secretary of the Theater Group Maro Telvizian was awarded a Ministry diploma.

On July 8, “Vahram Papazian” theater group presented “Shoghokort” in the Hamo Kharazian Drama Theater in Artashat - the theatrical capital of Armenia. The performance was attended by RA National Assembly Speaker Hovik Abrahamian, Governor of Ararat region Vardges Hovakimian, Mayor of Artashat Gagik Mouradian, other officials and guests.

In his speech Artistic Director of the theater group Yervant Ghazanchian mentioned that the group was invited to Artashat by RA NA Speaker Hovik Abrahamian. Once again Trdat Avedikian thanked everyone for the warm reception and hospitality and handed in a souvenir to NA Speaker Hovik Abrahamian.

Flowers and lasting standing ovations accompanied the performances of the “Vahram Papazian” theater group everywhere in Armenia. The mastery and professionalism of the actors of the group - Manuel Markarian, Harout Torossian, Arpi Avetikian, Harout Manoukian, Hovakim Keshishian, Varya Bournazian, Vartan Mkrtchian, Sako Ohanian and Hovik Katerdjian - were highly praised and accessed by the Armenian audience.

During the days in Armenia the members of the “Vahram Papazian” theater group were received by RA Diaspora Minister Hranoush Hakobian. They visited the AGBU Armenian Representation and got acquainted with the activities of the Union in Armenia.

AGBU-AYA “Vahram Papazian” theater group was founded in 1959. It has over 200 performances in its repertoire and this was its third visit to Armenia (1972, 2008). In the course of its history “Vahram Papazian” theater group was managed by famous Diaspora-Armenian artists such as Berge Fazlian, Krikor Satamian, Vatche Adrouni and others.



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