Haig Hovsepian Brings (Violin) Trills and Chills with Khachaturian Violin Concerto at BHS


Haig Hovsepian Brings (Violin) Trills and Chills with Khachaturian Violin Concerto at BHS
BELMONT, Mass. — Belmont High School parents who are interested in music are lucky; the school has a top-notch music program. Several times a year, the various vocal and musical groups perform. Parents are so dedicated that even during budget cuts, they raise funds to make sure that the excellence of the music and fine arts programs, led by Arto Assadourian, continues.
With all this preparation, they still did not expect the tornado that was sophomore Haig Hovsepian, on March 4, during the school’s annual Spring Chorus and Orchestra Concert.
Hovsepian, winner of the 2015 Belmont High School Solo Competition, performed the 3rd movement of Aram Khachaturian’s Violin Concerto in D minor, at the Belmont High School Auditorium, with the Full Orchestra under the direction of Margot Reavey.
At the conclusion of his immaculate and explosive performance, the audience spontaneously leapt to their feet and greeted Hovsepian with thunderous applause. With a shy smile indicating both relief and delight at a job well done, the young virtuoso gracefully acknowledged the applause.
The Concerto was written in 1940 and dedicated to the world-renowned violinist David Oistrakh, who premiered it the same year in Moscow, where Khachaturian then lived. Fascinated by this unique and fiery piece, truly incomparable to any major Concerto in the Violin repertoire, Hovsepian had long dreamed of playing it one day. Playing with an orchestra was another professional goal that the young musician was striving to achieve. As the fate has it, both of those dreams materialized on one night and the year when he is 16.
Coincidentally, the honor of the first performance of the Concerto in Armenia belongs to the young performer’s grandmother, violinist Anahit Tsitsikian, who played it when she, in turn, was also only 16. Aram Khachaturian himself was present at that historical performance and said that he wished that many violinists decorated with governmental honors played as unforgettably beautiful as this very young musician did. Two generations later the piece is reborn to celebrate once again the creative talent of the nation the year of a significant anniversary in our history.
To quote a musical critic, this “concerto requires a violinist of the highest caliber, as it is so very difficult to perform.” Nevertheless musicians of all generations continue to study and perform it, inspiring others to enjoy this timeless musical masterpiece inspired by the folk melodies and rhythms of the Armenian mountains and villages.
Also performing that night were the Men’s Chorale, the Women’s Chorale and the Chamber Singers, all conducted by Sean Landers, as well as the Concert Orchestra, conducted by Reavey.
The piece in its entirety (all three movements) will be performed by Hovsepian on May 9th, with the Waltham Philharmonic Orchestra, at the John F. Kennedy Middle School, 655 Lexington Street Waltham, MA.

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