Twelve-year-old Milena Hovhannisyan is a fourth-grade piano student at the Argavand Music School After Arsen Sayan, which is named after the late maestro. It’s a challenge for her to cope with the butterflies she experiences before a performance. “It’s easier for me to perform with the choir, but I have a nervous feeling in my gut during my solo performances,” Milena said.
One hundred students attend the Argavand School and their annual concert usually brings together the best of them—the choirs consisting of younger singers and solo performers, as well as students of piano, violin, guitar and accordion who play works by Komitas, Aram Khachaturian, Aleksandr Spendiaryan, Arno Babajanyan, Robert Petrosyan, Gabriel Faure, Dmitri Kabalevsky and Vladimir Shainsky, among others.
The school was renovated five years ago thanks to the generous funding of philanthropist, Armenian musicologist, educator and social worker Arsen Sayan, who died last year. His wife Caterin continues to fund a scholarship through FAR for students who wish to study at the school.
After the performance, Milena seemed satisfied. “It was easier this time,” she said. This year, Milena and five other students also placed at the famed “Art Music” International Music Festival.
As gratitude for and acknowledgment of their hard work, FAR awarded the school with a Certificate of Appreciation for Quality Music Education. We also have three brand-new scholarships dedicated to Arsen Sayan for the coming academic year that will be awarded to students with the highest grades.