National Chamber Choir of Armenia
The Armenian Chamber Choir (ACC) was established with the generous sponsorship of “Vatche and Tamar Manoukian” Benevolent Association in October 2000. Robert Mlkeyan, a “Movses Khorenatsi” medal recipient and an Honored Art Worker of Armenia since 2008, was invited to occupy the post of the Artistic Director and the Principal Conductor of the Choir. Under Mlkeyan’s leadership, the ACC was recognized as the best chamber choir of Armenia in a short span of time. In 2008, the ACC acquired the status of a state (public) choir and was renamed into State Chamber Choir of Armenia (NCCA).
NCCA is a professional choir consisting of 35 musicians. Their repertoire includes the works of Gabrielli, Bach, Brahms, Vasks, Schnittke and other great composers. SCCA brilliantly performs works of Komitas, as well as works of contemporary Armenian composers. Over the years the choir has presented the audiences with world premieres featuring works of Tigran Mansourian, David Halajian, Edward Hayrapetian and many others. Moreover, the choir has introduced the debut performances of choral masterpieces of Britten, Schnittke, Vasks, Poulenc, Debussy and other composers to the Armenian audience.
In addition to frequent concerts in Yerevan, NCCA implements charity projects by performing in various regions of Armenia and spreading choral art among the wider Armenian public.
One of the greatest achievements of the Chamber Choir is the release in 2006 of “ARS POETICA” CD, featuring the choral concert written by Tigran Mansourian on the basis of 10 poems by Yeghishe Charents. In 2006, the CD was awarded a five-star rating by the World Music Council. The inclusion of the ARS POETICA CD in “The Gramophone”, one of the most prestigious music catalogues, reporting on the most prestigious classical CDs since 1923, may be considered another significant achievement for the Choir.
From 2001 to , the Choir held concerts in London, Italy, in the “White Hall” and Catherine Palace in Saint Petersburg, in the Council of Europe Concert Hall in Strasbourg, France.
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Both the timbre variety and the saturation of a symphonic orchestra are full of allure for Robert Mlkeyan, a violinist by training. No wonder, then, that he chose the profession of a conductor. The foundations for his professional training were laid in the Saint Petersburg Conductor School, an undisputed worldwide leader among similar educational institutions, where Mlkeyan mastered simultaneously two degrees. The first was opera and symphonic conducting, and the second was choir conducting. Later Mlkeyan earned a PhD degree in Yerevan. Mlkeyan’s professional career spans 27 years of arduous work at various organizations. Student Choir of Yerevan Komitas Conservatoire Composition and Musicology Department>
Conservatoire Youth Choir (“Grand Prix” prize winner in the republican contest); Assistant Intern in Emin Kchachatrian’s class,Artistic Director and Chief Conductor of the State Symphonic Orchestra of Gyumri, Artistic Director and Chief Conductor of the Gyumri Chamber Choir (1992-2000);
Mkleyan is founder of “Hay Folk” vocal ensemble in Yerevan (1995). Outstanding achievements in the Republic and numerous concert tours.
Since 2000 he is the director and Chief Conductor of the Armenian Chamber Choir. In 2008 the choir a state status was conferred on. Since then he has been the Artistic Director and Chief Conductor of the Armenian State Chamber Choir;
He had concert tours in Paris, Lyon, Marseille, London (several times), Aleppo, Damascus, Latakia, Tbilisi, Moscow, Petersburg, Hannover, Frankfurt, Strasbourg. Participation of a highly prestigious international music festival in Bergamo. Concerts in prestigious concert halls such as “Donizetti’s Opera Theatre”in Bergamo, the “White Hall” in St. Petersburg, the Council of Europe Concert Hall “Salle Schweitzer at the Palais de la Musique et des Congres of Strasbourg” in Strasbourg.
Exceptional achievements both as an individual art worker and in the office of the Director of the Armenian State Chamber Choir.
A violinist by training, a graduate of Yerevan State Conservatoire after Komitas (1975), Arabyan joined the State Symphonic Orchestra of Armenia following his graduation. In the same period he began to teach violin classes at the School of Music after T. Tchouhadjian. Having joined the Symphonic Orchestra of the State Radio and Television in 1978, he became its director in 1988. Between 1991 and 1993 he served as the Chief Director of the Music Programmes Service of the State Radio and Television. In 1993 he was appointed to the position of the Chief Adviser to the Head of the State Radio and Television. Two years later he became the Head of the Department of International Affairs of the RA Ministry of Communications. Between 1996 and1997 he served as the Deputy Chief of the Department of Cultural Affairs of Yerevan Municipality. In 1997 Armen Arabyan became the Director of the National Chamber Orchestra of Armenia. Since 2009 he has devoted his creative talents to the National Chamber Choir of Armenia.
Since 2007, A. Arabian has been the Golden Medal recipient of the Armenian Ministry of Culture, and in 2011 he has been awarded with the honorary title of the Honoured Art Worker of Armenia.