By Sylva Asryan

YEREVAN — This year the Vahan Tekeyan Awards ceremony of the Tekeyan Cultural Association (TCA), supported by the Shake Tekeyan-Ghazarian Fund of the TCA of the United States and Canada, took place on May 17 at the Tekeyan Center. These annual awards recognize and encourage the best work in various fields of Armenian culture. During its existence, over 100 worthy individuals have been recognized.

Rouben Mirzakhanyan, president of the TCA of Armenia, announced the winners, congratulated them, and thanked the committees of specialists for their work in the awards process.

Poet Manvel Mikoyan received the award in the field of literature for his collection of poetry, titled Stvernerits andin [Beyond the Shadows]. Edmond Y. Azadian, overseas member of the Academy of Sciences of the Republic of Armenia, presented the award, declaring, “The volume Stvernerits andin characterizes the universal thoughts of contemporary man.” He added that the poet also “expresses his poetic anxiety concerning the nightmare of an emptying homeland.”

Azadian remarked that Mikoyan like the Istanbul Armenian poet Zahrad could poetically present aspects from the course of daily life and evinced the spirit of the poet Rouben Sevak through universal and complex generalizations.

The drama award was given to the Vardan Achemyan State Theater of Gyumri for its presentation of Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s “Eyes of a Blue Dog.” Armen Elbakyan, president of the award committee, noted that the staging of Marquez’s works was as complex as the latter’s prose. However, the youth succeeded in presenting Marquez’s “black and white world, [his] sharp, laconic environment,” where it is difficult to determine the boundary between illusion and reality.

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The award in the field of music was given to Eduard Topchyan for his activities in 2017. Hagop Avedikian, editor-in-chief of the newspaper Azg, considered the competition an extraordinary phenomenon, and the award the recognition of years of effort and accomplishment, though a little late. He stressed that thanks to Topchyan. Yerevan had become a capital city of music.

In turn, Topchyan, the conductor of the Armenian Philharmonic Orchestra, declared, “It is important for me that I am a small part of music, and not the director of a musical group, and it is pleasing to receive such an honorable award.”

Khachatur Abovyan State Pedagogical University docent Misak Melkonyan’s sculpture “The Violinist” received the notice of the specialists of the award committee for visual arts and sculpture. Doctor of Art Hravard Hakobyan evaluated this and Melkonyan’s sculpture “Homeland,” pointing out that in “The Violinist,” the artist wishes to make the viewer forget about the surroundings and remain only immersed in music.

All the awardees expressed their thanks for the honor of receiving these awards bearing the name of the great poet Vahan Tekeyan.

(Translated from the Armenian)

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