Armenian National Philharmonic Orchestra
The Armenian National Philharmonic Orchestra (ANPO) is an orchestra based in Yerevan, Armenia. It has always been considered as one of the leading orchestras of the former Soviet Union.
Established 90 years ago by Arshak Adamian and Alexander Spendiaryan it is the national center of professional orchestral music in Armenia. Over the years, conductors A. Adamyan, A. Spendiaryan, S. Charekyan, G. Budaghyan, K. Saradjian, M. Maluntsyan, O. Durian, M.Terian, R. Vartanian, A. Katanyan, D. Khandjian, V. Gergiev, V. Papian, M. Avetisyan and L. Tjeknavorian directed the orchestra. In October 2000 Eduard Topchjan was appointed the Artistic Director and Principal Conductor of the ANPO.
The ANPO performs concerts at its residence – Aram Khachaturian Concert Hall, one of the architectural pearls of Yerevan designed by Alexander Tamanian - and hosts audience of 1300 seats.
Being led to the new millennium by Maestro Eduard Topchjan the ANPO is committed to promoting cultural, musical awareness in local audiences, regularly performing classical and operatic music in addition to national and contemporary music.
Since its foundation, the orchestra has performed most of the classical repertoire. Many of the world's leading artists, such as David Oistrach, Sviatoslav Richter, Mstislav Rostropovitch, Emil Gilels, Renato Bruson, Steven Isserlis, Misha Mayski, Sergei Nakariakov, Boris Berezovski, Natalia Gutman, Giuseppe Giacomini, Isabelle Faust, Julia Fischer, Pinchas Zukerman, Gidon Kremer, Yuri Bashmet, Placido Domingo and many others, as well as already established and emerging Armenian musicians have appeared with this orchestra. The ANPO features the works of Armenian and international composers and is committed to supporting the performance of new orchestral works in programs interesting not only for regular visitors and connoisseurs, but also for tourists and young people.
Alexander Melik-Pashayev, Willy Ferrero, Carlo Zecchi, Franz Konvichny, Kurt Masur and Valery Gergiev conducted the ANPO, the latter holding the position of Artistic Director and Principal Conductor for five years. Gia Kancheli, Sofya Gubaidulina and Rodion Shchedrin closely cooperated with the ANPO. Aram Khachaturian, Dmitry Kabalevsky, Krzysztof Penderecki and the other composers conducted their works with the Armenian National Philharmonic Orchestra. The ANPO serves as Ambassador of Armenian music worldwide and tours regularly. Famous Armenian soloists appear with the ANPO, such as Sergei Babayan, Narek Hakhnazaryan, Sergey Khachatryan, Isabel Bayrakdarian, Kim Kashkashian and many others. Since 1989 the ANPO has toured extensively throughout the USA, Canada, Austria, Germany, France, Switzerland, Luxembourg, Lebanon, Spain, Portugal, the United Kingdom, Greece, Iran, Cyprus, Turkey, Russia, and the UAE. The most recent tours were to Japan in 2008 with 15 concerts, Germany and Slovakia in 2010. There are scheduled tours in 2014 and 2015 to Italy, Germany, France and Scandinavian countries.
The Armenian National Philharmonic Orchestra hosts the annual Yerevan International Music Festival, held in autumn. The 8th edition is due in 2014. Internationally acclaimed soloists participate in the festival, appearing in concerts and giving masterclasses to young Armenian musicians.
Eduard Topchjan and Alexander Chaushian are Artistic Directors of the festival held under the patronage of First Armenian Lady Mrs. Rita Sargsyan.
More than 30 CDs have been released with the orchestra's recordings. The most recent Armenian Rhapsody was released in 2011 by BIS Records, Sweden. It was highly acclaimed by international reviewers.
Music by Aram Khachaturian, Arno Babadjanyan, Edvard Mirzoyan, Alexander Arutiunian, Avet Terteryan and many other prominent Armenian composers is best performed by the Armenian National Philharmonic Orchestra featuring famous Armenian and international soloists. Many prominent international specialists mention the constantly growing performing level of the Armenian National Philharmonic Orchestra considering its nuanced sound, impressive string section and charismatic Artistic Director.