YEREVAN (Noyan Tapan)–John Choukassian’s folk music ensemble–on its first visit to Armenia–met with journalists Tuesday and gave a surprise performance. The ensemble will perform at the Aram Khachatrian Grand Concert Hall in Yerevan on July 25 within the framework of the "One Nation–One Culture" festival.
John Choukassian’s parents emigrated to the US in 1915–while the parents of his wife–ensemble soloist Barbara Choukassian–emigrated to the US during Sultan Hamid’s pogroms in the 1890s. Since then they are the first generation that has been on Armenian soil. Sebastian by origin–John Choukassian included the works of Armenian composers–Armenian folk songs and melodies in the ensemble’s repertoire.
After performing in Karabakh–Minister of Culture–Youth Affairs and Sports Armen Sargssian conveyed a message thanking Choukassian for his ensemble’s performance. "Your ensemble provided Karabakh art-lovers with wonderful momen’s," the message read.
Deputy Head of the Public Relations Department of the Ministry of Culture–Youth Affairs and Sports of Armenia–Spartak Karabakhtsian reported that about 300 art workers from the Diaspora have already arrived in Armenia and Karabakh within the framework of the "One Nation–One Culture" festival. On August 2–the "Arax-Sasun" dance ensemble from Lyon–France–will mark its 40th anniversary in Armenia. In the month of October–16 painters will arrive in Armenia from Aleppo–Syria–and on November 3 a theatre company from Aleppo led by Manvel Keshishian will also visit Armenia.