[RESIDENCY] Silent Cranes: The Music of Mary Kouyoumdjian, Performed by Kronos Quartet and Hotel Elefant

Tuesday, May 12, 2015. 8:00 pm


Kronos Quartet & Hotel Elefant at Roulette 2015

[RESIDENCY] Silent Cranes: The Music of Mary Kouyoumdjian, Performed by Kronos Quartet and Hotel Elefant

Tuesday, May 12, 2015. 8:00 pm

April 24, 2015 marked the centennial of the Armenian Genocide, a tragic event that led to the mass extermination of 1.5 million Armenians by the Ottoman Turks and was the first genocide of the 20th century. While over twenty countries and forty-two U.S. States have formally recognized the Armenian Genocide, modern-day Turkey has yet to do so and threatens imprisonment to those who mention the topic within their borders. Even now, 100 years later, this historic event continues to be just as relevant as it was before. As an American composer who values the freedom of speech and whose family fled the genocide, this topic is of great personal importance to Mary Kouyoumdjian. This is the perfect time to remember those who were lost while continuing a dialogue about what happened, and how we can prevent further genocides from happening.

The program will include the U.S. premiere of a new multi-media work for Kronos Quartet entitled Silent Cranes, exploring the idea of the Armenian Genocide Centennial, with projection design by Laurie Olinder and poetry by David Barsamian;This Should Feel Like Home, originally commissioned by Carnegie Hall for Hotel Elefant, a self-portrait of what it was like to visit Armenia for the first time, sampling field recordings from the city to villages; Dzov Yerku Kooynov [Sea of Two Colors] commissioned by the American Composers Forum/JFund for Hotel Elefant, a portrait of composer Komitas Vardapet, who survived the Armenian Genocide and suffered through 20 years of post-traumatic stress disorder; and a new work from an upcoming project with librettist Royce Vavrek entitled Everlastingness, a portrait of painter Arshile Gorky, who survived the Armenian Genocide and lived through a series of tragic events upon his displacement to the States. Kouyoumdjian  is a firm believer that approaching such controversial topics through the Arts opens opportunities for a conversation with audiences when words become too difficult to say or hear.

David Harrington, violin
John Sherba, violin
Hank Dutt, viola
Sunny Yang, cello

Brian H. Scott, Lighting Supervisor
Brian Mohr, Audio Engineer

Laurie Olinder, Projection Design
David Barsamian, Poetry

Jeffrey Gavett, baritone
Katie Cox, flute
Domenica Fossati, flute
Isabel Kim, clarinet
Christa Van Alstine, bass clarinet
Andie Tanning Springer, violin
Kallie Ciechomski, viola
Gillian Gallagher, viola
Rose Bellini, cello
David Friend, piano
Josh Perry, percussion
Kirsten Volness, percussion/accordion
Hannis Brown, electric guitar
Peter Bussigel, electronics
David Bloom, conductor



The Jerome Foundation, a long-time supporter of young composers, was a mainstay in Roulette’s early development and continues to help us fulfill our mission by presenting ambitious work by promising artists. Each year, the Jerome Foundation supports five artist residencies and four commissions at Roulette. These artists are consistently some of the strongest in our repertoire, and we are delighted to honor the Jerome Foundation’s 50th Anniversary grant.