YerazArt Event Raises $17,000 for Young Musicians


WINCHESTER, Mass. — The home of Raffi and Nina Festekjian was the venue for a fundraiser for YerazArt on Saturday, September 24. The gathering raised about $17,000, with the attendance of 75 guests.

After a performance by several members of the Boston Philharmonic Orchestra, Nicole Hajjar, chair of the YerazArt board, gave an overview of the organization’s goals and philanthropic efforts. In previous years, along with supporting individual musicians, money was spent to bring to the US a group of young musicians from Armenia, so that they could get experience performing in diverse venues. This year, the YerazArt board has decided to send the funds raised to young music students there who are eager to pursue higher education in Armenia. In fact, she said, the annual tuition cost of the education of a young opera singer and a young pianist, has been fully subsidized by YerazArt.

In addition, she said, the Brutyan School in Gumri, also known as School No. 4, received a set of new musical instruments from YerazArt. Similarly, the Karakeravan Art School received an oud, guitar and kanon.

Anna Afeyan, left, with Katrina Menzigian

The group has been able to cultivate young musicians. Hajjar announced one young pianist, Aleksandr Iradyan, 20, has been accepted to the graduate program of the Florida International University. YerazArt will pay for the schooling. Another recipient of funds is Nara Avetisyan, who has been admitted to the Cleveland Institute of Music, to study with Prof. Sergei Babayan. She will receive $4,000 annually from YerazArt’s Anais Afeyan Foundation, started by Noubar and Anna Afeyan.

The Executive Board of YerazArt includes Anna Afeyan, Nina Festekjian, Vahe Ghahraman, Avak Kahvejian, Sargis Karapetyan, Sylvie Zakarian Meguerditchian, Seza Seraderian, Apo Ashjian and Yeghishe Manucharyan.

For more information about the group, visit

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Alin K. Gregorian

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