29.10.2013 - UNESCO Venice Office

Maestro Gevorg Dabagyan brings the unique sounds of Armenian duduk to Venice

©Gevorg Dabagyan

The Studies and Documentation Centre of Armenian Culture of Venice, in cooperation with the Intercultural Institute of Comparative Music Studies of Giorgio Cini Foundation and the UNESCO Regional Bureau for Science and Culture in Europe, Venice (Italy), are pleased to announce the seventh edition of the Course on Armenian duduk scheduled from 29 November-1 December 2013 at the Research and Documentation Centre Armenian Culture in Venice.

Minas Lourian, director of the music section of the Studies and Documentation Centre of Armenian Culture of Venice, has invited again Gevorg Dabagyan to teach this year’s edition of the Course of Armenian duduk. Maestro Dabagyan is a major living expert in this very ancient instrument and the main duduk teacher at the Yerevan State Conservatory. He has founded several ensembles, including Shoghaken, a group dedicated to preserving the very rich Armenian folk music heritage. Liturgical music also features prominently in Dabagyan’s vast repertory.

In 2005 the duduk (or dziranapogh in Armenian) was proclaimed a masterpiece, representing the Armenian musical tradition in the UNESCO “Programme of Masterpieces of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity”, and then inscribed in 2008 on the new “Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity”.

The duduk, or “dziranapogh” in Armenian, is a double-reed woodwind instrument made of apricot wood, conventionally called the “Armenian oboe”. The roots of its music go back to ancient times. The Armenian duduk is distinctive in construction and performance technique and, characterized by a warm and soft timbre. It accompanies popular Armenian traditional songs and dances of the various regions and is played at events, such as weddings and funerals; over the last few decades, its popularity has faded, in particular in the rural areas where it originated.

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