On April 10, a diverse audience packed the BRIC House Stoop in Brooklyn, NY to explore the historic role of Armenian women in the arts, both in Armenia and the diaspora, over the past 170 years. After bringing famous pianist Tigran Hamasyan and his Luys i Luso project to the BRIC Ballroom in 2016, the AGBU Performing Arts Department (PAD) returned to BRIC House for “The Power of Women in Armenia,” a multi-media event as part of the BRIC Stoop Series. The event included live performances by the Zulal A Capella Trio, poetry reading by Lola Koundakjian and a panel discussion moderated by human rights advocate Houry Geudelekian.
After opening remarks by AGBU PAD director Hayk Arsenyan followed by Vanity Gee, the associate producer of BRIC’s Interdisciplinary Programs, Geudelekian, the UN coordinator at Unchained At Last—the only U.S. nonprofit dedicated to helping women and girls leave or avoid arranged and forced marriages and rebuild their lives—started the evening. “I am here to tell you as a human rights advocate that the most compelling way to speak out is through the arts, be it a song, poem, short story, movie, blog or social media post,” she said.
The songs of Zulal Trio and poetry of Koundakjian spoke to the power of Armenian women through time. Koundakjian recited text by Diana Abgar, an Armenian writer and diplomat—and first Armenian female ambassador—and read excerpts from the works of Zabel Yessayan, Silva Kaputikyan, and Maroush Yeramian.
The Armenian General Benevolent Union (AGBU) is the world’s largest non-profit
organization devoted to upholding the Armenian heritage through educational,
cultural and humanitarian programs. Each year, AGBU is committed to making
a difference in the lives of 500,000 people across Armenia, Artsakh and the
Armenian diaspora. Since 1906, AGBU has remained true to one overarching
goal: to create a foundation for the prosperity of all Armenians.
To learn more visit www.agbu.org.