AGBU Antranig Dance Ensemble Performs in Boston

Antranig_Dance_2008_01 AGBU’s Antranig Dance Ensemble performed at Boston University as part of the Boston University’s Armenian Students Association’s (ASA) cultural
event on Sunday afternoon, March 30, 2008.
Two hundred guests were in attendance at Boston University’s Tsai
Performance Center to watch the New Jersey-based AGBU Antranig Ensemble
perform under the artistic direction of Joyce Tamesian-Shenloogian.
Antranig, which consists of thirty members, performed fourteen dances
from various regions in Armenia, including “Hayastan,” “Haghtanak,” and
“Hemshen,” in traditional Armenian costumes.
“There were ethnographic dances, along with a mix of traditional,
contemporary, and lyrical dancing,” said Tamesian-Shenloogian, director
of Antranig for the past 22 years. “The performance was to celebrate and
preserve the Armenian culture.”
The Junior Choir of the Sts. Sahag and Mesrob Armenian Church of
Providence, Rhode Island also performed under the direction of Maestro
Konstantin Petrossian. Over 20 choir members sang twelve songs, and
authentic Armenian instruments, including the duduk (a double-reed
instrument) and dhol (a double-sided barrel drum), were used during the
choral performance.
“The cultural songs were augmented with English explanations of what the
songs meant and where they came from,” said Jacques Minoyan, Treasurer
of Boston University’s ASA.
Two ASA members, Cailyne Ghazarian and Jacques Minoyan, participated in
the cultural event as well, performing in the choir and dance ensemble,
respectively. In an attempt to bring Armenians together, the ASA hosts
both social and educational events, which attract Armenian students from
other universities in Boston, including Babson, Berklee, Boston College,
Harvard, MIT, Northeastern, Suffolk and Tufts.
The event, which was open to the entire school, attracted non-Armenians
to the cultural performance. “Non-Armenians were amazed as to how
distinct our culture is from the songs, dances and cultural clothing,”
said Minoyan. “It was a new experience for them.”
AGBU Antranig Dance Ensemble, which started in 1969, is gearing up for
its 40th-anniversary performance slated for sometime next year. Gagik
Karapetian, Antranig’s director from Armenia, will help
Tamesian-Shenloogian prepare for the show.
Antranig’s next performance will be at Columbia University on October 4,
2008 for a Columbia Armenian Club cultural event.
Established in 1906, AGBU ( is the world’s largest
non-profit Armenian organization. Headquartered in New York City with an
annual budget of $34 million, AGBU preserves and promotes the Armenian
identity and heritage through educational, cultural and humanitarian
programs, annually serving some 400,000 Armenians on six continents.

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