Greater Worcester Armenian Chorale Holds Christmas Concert

WORCESTER, Mass.—The Greater Worcester Armenian Chorale presented a special Christmas concert on Sun., Dec. 6, at 1:30 p.m., in the Sanctuary of Holy Trinity Armenian Apostolic Church. The program consisted of Christmas carols and songs in Armenian and English. The chorale is under the direction of Maestro Konstantin Petrossian, artistic director and conductor, with organ accompaniment by Karine Avanesov. Operatic soprano Knarik Nerkararyan was the guest soloist with organist Levon Hovsepian.

Soloist Knarik Nerkararyan and organ accompanist Levon Hovsepian following the concert. (Photo: Peter Kallanain)

A medley of traditional carols beautifully performed by the chorale opened the concert: “Oh Come, All Ye Faithful,” “Hark, The Herald Angels Sing,” “Ave Maria” by 16th-century Italian composer Giulio Caccini. The following Armenian Christmas songs were performed: “Ov Hayots Asdvadz” by Makar Yegmalian; “Park Ee Partzoons” (Gloria in Excelsis) and “Khorthoort Metz” (O Great Mystery), both by Movses Kertogh from the 6th century; “Ov Zarmamanalee” (How Wondrous) by Grigor Pahlavuni from the 12th century; “Aysor Dzaynum Hayragan” (Today, the Paternal Voice) by Hovhaness Yerzngatsi from the 13th century; and “Ee Horeh Tsagetsar,” arranged by R. Grigorian. The chorale also presented its signature piece, “Yegeghetsin Haygagan” (The Armenian Church) by Vahan Bedlian and Vahan Tekeyan.

Selections by Knarik Nerkararyan included “Der Voghormya” by Gomidas, “Diramayr” (Mother of God) by K. Petrossian and Archbishop N. Bozabalian, and “Ave Maria.” The last was the classic Bach/Gounod version and brought the audience to its feet with much applause for her thrilling rendition.

The free concert was enjoyed by parishioners, friends, and guests who gave the performers a well-deserved standing ovation following the conclusion of the final numbers: “Silent Night,” “Carol of the Bells,” “Joy to the World,” and the “Hayr Mer.” Hayr Soorp Sahag Yemishian, pastor of Holy Trinity Armenian Apostolic Church, which co-sponsored the event, and Maestro Petrossian were both presented with a City Proclamation by Mayor Joseph Petty that declared Dec. 6 to be “Greater Worcester Armenian Chorale Day” in Worcester, “with the wish for success in today’s event and in all future endeavors of this most notable cultural organization.”

Hayr Soorp Yemishian congratulated Maestro Petrossian, the members of the chorale, organists Gayane Kocharyan and Levon Hovsepian, and soloist Knarik Nerkararyan for the wonderful holiday season performance. He thanked the audience for their attendance and encouraged them to continue to support the chorale, noting the importance of preserving and promoting the rich musical heritage of the Armenian people.

The fellowship in the Church Hall that preceded the concert was provided by the chorale.

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Source: Armenian Weekly
Link: Greater Worcester Armenian Chorale Holds Christmas Concert

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