1915-2015 Truth & Hope Ara Dinkjian
April 14th, 2015
Armenian-American composer and ud player Ara Dinkjian is well known throughout Turkey, The Middle East, and Europe. Many of his songs (i.e. Vazgeçtim, Ağladıkça, Sarışın, YineMiÇiçek, Son Sardunyalar) have become standards. His progressive ensembles Night Ark, The Secret Trio, and The Ara Dinkjian Quartet have blazed new paths by seamlessly blending diverse musical styles and elements. Now, with the release of 1915 – 2015 Truth& Hope, Mr. Dinkjian gives us his unique musical expression of the Armenian Genocide.
This commemoration was suggested and commissioned by Hasan Saltık, head of Kalan Müzik. Embracing this rare opportunity and support, Mr. Dinkjian decided to record songs either directly or indirectly associated with the Genocide, where the ud would assume the role of the singer, chorus, or choir, and would be accompanied by a string quartet. He asked his friend Ari Hergel to do the arrangements and play the guitar. Being a fellow Armenian, Mr. Hergel understood the deeper meaning behind pieces.
Even though Mr. Saltık offered to have the recording made anywhere, including Armenia or America, Mr. Dinkjian chose to record in Turkey, using Turkish musicians (Istanbul Strings and Özcan Gül on duduk), rather than to remain isolated from the uncomfortable issues.
Many of the songs are standards in the worldwide Armenian community, such as Hampere (Be Patient), Giligia (Cilicia), MardikiYerk (Soldier’s Song), İprevArdziv (Like An Eagle), HankçetsekTukAntor (Rest Peacefully), Hayrİm (My Father), and MiaynTeMayrıs Çimana (Don’t Let My Mother Know). Others are from the Armenian sacred repertoire, such as İ VerinYerusağem (In Heavenly Jerusalem), Der Voğormia (Lord Have Mercy), and Kıta Der (Have Compassion Lord). His father Onnik Dinkjian, the renowned Armenian folk and liturgical singer, appears as a special guest singing Ardasunk (Tears), a song virtually unknown, which he learned as a young boy in Paris. The CD concludes with Lullaby For The Sun, one of AraDinkjian’s four original compositions which appear on the CD. Written for his daughter Arev, it represents Mr. Dinkjian’s hope for a better world, one without fear or discrimination.
It is AraDinkjian’s belief that while the truth can at times be painful, and indeed ugly, it is ultimately humanity’s only hope for our future. This project is an acknowledgement of that truth, combined with a deep respect, love, and hope for humanity.