Under the auspices of His Grace Archbishop Shahan Sarkisian, Armenian Prelate of Syria, the Hamazkayin Latakia Vahan Navasartian Chapter Executive Board organized a performance of the Keghart Dance Ensemble for an audience of over 500 Armenians and Arabs. The program featured Armenian and non-Armenian dances.
Artistic director and dance teacher Suren Kirazian worked with small children, teenagers, and young adults for four months before the first public engagement of the ensemble. Mr. Kirazian worked to highlight each dancer’s special abilities and talent.
The ensemble performed at the Al-Assad Cultural Center in Latakia. The parish priest, Rev. Vazken Keoshgerian, the parish council, representatives of organizations, government officials, scout leaders, troops, and hundreds of other audience members. Opening in Armenian, Vartuhi Garabedian-Tulumjian asked the audience to stand for a moment of silence to honor the memory of martyrs in Syria, Armenia, and Artsakh.
She then reflected on the initiative of His Holiness Aram I, Catholicos of the Great House of Cilicia, to proclaim 2019 the Year of the Armenian Press. She spoke of the mission of Hamazkayin to inspire young people with Armenian culture and spirit. She said parents had an important obligation to direct their children toward Armenian culture, so the children may always be connected to Armenian life. Ms. Tulumjian presented the dance ensemble and its artistic director. She thanked the president of Syria, the cultural officials of Damascus, the Hamazkayin Syria Regional Executive, the members of the Keghart Dance Ensemble, and their parents.