Love to the music and painting became the starting point and base of our creative unit
There are lands older than Bible with the eternal beauty of youth. There is something that we call universal language of the humankind. And finally there’s a third part, a source of everything that lives. These three parts are Armenia, music, love and they form the base of the unique project “Amen”. About the music that grabs your heart, land that you love as you breathe, about the birth of the project that accumulated the history of the country “From the crucible of creation to the stone blocks of Garni” are telling our new columnists, producer and designer Asmik Chakhmakhchan and composer Araksiya Mushegyan.
Sometimes it seems that the majority of perfect consistent patterns are born from the nexus of shaky chances. Or may be vice versa: a chance is a certain harmonic conditionality? For twenty years of life in Moscow we possibly followed same routes in the same streets but our paths crossed just six years ago in Yerevan. An amazing fact is that our fathers were friends and as we found out later our grandfathers were connected too, one was a priest in the city he moved to after genocide, Mush. And the second one studied and served for him in Constantinople. So there was some happy pattern in our life orbits being brought together and crossed.
Especially since our parents were people of art. In both families gathered creative people with famous singers, actors, architects, composers among them. Parties became shows. Asmik was two and half when she first played Bach’s fugue, she had a perfect pitch as a happy gift of birth.
Love to the music and painting became the starting point and base of our creative unit. The space of the kitchen we sat that day expanded to the scale of the Universe we shared, while we drew the trajectory of the common path thinking out of the musical project each of us dreamt of for a long time. All of it used to be on subconscious level, fermenting, disturbing and that same night transformed into a sonorous beautiful idea. First demo was created by Araksiya in one single impulse and it was such a bright flash that everything shaky and intangible before became visible, undoubted and harmonic. It looked like there was even no need to create anything, we just had to lend a hand and take it, quickly writing the music consonant to images. Being two absolutely different people we saw one goal from different points of view and got a whole multidimensional picture as a result. Stars matched us and the creative tandem came to life with the exclusive project “Amen”.
“Amen” is an extraordinary composition written with the unusual libretto, original music, concept, text and choreography. It is not a mosaic built from different compositions, everything was started from zero. It’s hard to define its genre. Definitely it isn’t an opera, may be something closer to the rock opera. It is a spectacular, impressive, dramatic action in three acts showing the history of Armenian nation from the moment of birth to nowadays. The history of people, not state with the significant milestones like being born from the undefined chaos, fight for self awareness as a separate nation. And this centuries old process was penetrated by a cry of suffering body giving birth to the spirit of nation. But at the rise of this tormenting process lies love. Creation excuses the pain. It is meant by nature for all that lives and ethnos goes through all of these stages and it makes this pain and love understandable to any person sitting in the hall. And therefore the composition is deeply symbolic.
The harmony of visual and musical elements is made by a team of two hundred and fifty people whilst fifty of them are staying behind the scenes. Show’s language is Italian, that was a producing centre’s decision, project is international and national. We break stereotypes and borders between nations. Today we plan Japan-Armenian project. Culture, art, music belong to the world and have no borders. The constant component of our project is Armenia and this is a unique possibility for us to express our endless love and gratefulness to our land.
It is impossible not to get inspired by the project, its music, decorations, it is as natural as breathing. And we give the same importance to the task of bringing academic cultural code to our audience, to clean it from everything false and populist. Armenian folk music is kept in its original state just thanks to the efforts of masters of this genre who try to keep it safe from the eternal quantity of foreign interpretations.
Perhaps the only thing in music area we can be proud of in Russia and Armenia is the classics that gives our masters the possibility to star on the best scenes of the world. At Soviet times we had the outstanding musical education and fortunately this school is partly saved. You can call yourself professional only in case you get fundamental, specialized knowledge.
We are searching for young talents through all of the country. Giving injection of beauty and this way changing the world, isn’t it the main task of art? Classical music upbrings character from the beginning, learning note grammar means developing brain. Music is a perfect cure for aggression, indifference, anger, affecting emotional level is more effective than most intellectual. Therefore we feel our responsibility front of the people.
Life in music is easy and happy because its source is always love. And love as a perfect form of being includes all of spectrum of human emotions, you can talk about it endlessly and give all that you have for it. Giving beloved ones your time, efforts, peace of your soul is not a burden but a necessity dictated by heart. Loving person is interesting and harmonious. Everything in our life should be balanced, we shouldn’t face the choice — take just this or that. If you have to sacrifice something for someone you feel it like lost, you enter the field of disharmony with broken balance.
Living we give our energy. And our power comes from the native land that is always with us and inside of us. We can live far away from it but coming back you realize every time that the flow of your native part cleans and takes away like a river everything alluvial, occasional, sick. And you feel like reborn when you observe these ancient like the world and young like the first day of Creation pictures: gorge in a fog fallen to the ground, colourful blossom in the valley, glares of sun rays refracting through a grape showing seeds, stairs built in the rock leading up to the monastery Gerard same as Jacob’s ladder inviting us to the sun. Chorus on the top of the mountain, spiritual music falling on our heads from heaven as a blessing, envelops us and cleans. There’s nothing better than this crescendo of music and love.