When the Project LA group emerged in the Armenian music scene several years ago, it offered an alternative to the existing music in the scene. Besides showcasing American classics, the project's creator, Levon Arevshatyan, also incorporated the works of Armenian classics such as Vahan Teryan, Yeghishe Charents, Silva Kaputikyan, Hamo Sahyan, and Paruyr Sevak.
The success of the project is also attributed to the professional team that collaborates and delivers pleasing creations. The team includes music director Khachik Sahakyan, Tehmine Arabachyan, Sona Shiroyan, producer Suren Sahakyan, sound director Arman Avetisyan, and project manager Levon Arevshatyan. Suren Sahakyan, the group's producer, shares the story behind the idea, the journey the group has embarked on, and their aspirations.
"When Levon Arevshatyan initially shared the first piece with me, it featured the words of poets from American classics. Levon hesitated to draw inspiration from Armenian classics, feeling the weight of the responsibility. However, one of our early works included a song based on Vahan Teryan's poem, and it received a tremendous response. People became genuinely interested."
In 2016, we held a concert at the Sports Concert Complex featuring Project LA and a symphony orchestra. Additionally, in 2019, a solo concert was held, and all the tickets were sold out two weeks prior to the event. "Quite frankly, we were surprised because we didn't run any advertising campaign.
This situation compelled us to work even harder. We expanded our repertoire, added more songs and concert programs, and began incorporating the works of Armenian authors more frequently. We started including pieces by Yeghishe Charents, Paruyr Sevak, Silva Kaputikyan, Hamo Sahyan, and Gevorg Emin."
Regarding collaboration with contemporary poets, Project LA exclusively works with Avet Barseghyan, whose style aligns well with the group. "I should mention that in the near future, we plan to explore the works of Hovhannes Shiraz. His works have been on our list for a while, but due to the lack of time we keep postponing. We will definitely touch this subject in the near future. As a result of collaborating with Avet Barseghyan, the song "Requiem" was born, which reflects the events of the 2020 Artsakh war.
Suren Sahakyan spoke very emotionally while discussing this specific topic. "The song is dedicated to Alen Margaryan, who bravely sacrificed his studies and enlisted in defense of our Motherland during the war. Avet Barseghyan shared this story with us, and he also wrote the lyrics, which are absolutely remarkable and deeply moving. We felt compelled to address this topic. It was our way of expressing gratitude and merit..."
Project LA frequently receives offers to perform at concerts, and they have upcoming plans to visit Gyumri, where they will be performing for the second time. When asked about the vision of Project LA from years ago, Suren Sahakyan shares, "My dream is to have the opportunity to showcase our songs internationally, allowing foreigners to listen, understand, and appreciate our music."
Author: Anahit Harutyunyan