Formed in 1935 in Yerevan, the capital city of Armenia, this orchestra has 100 members and is permanently housed in Khachaturian Hall in the capital, giving concerts weekly during its season. The players are gathered from graduates of Komitas University and from Russian conservatories in Moscow and St. Petersburg. All of the musicians, including the conductor, are of Armenian heritage, born and raised in that country. In September 1989, composer/conductor Loris Tjeknavorian was appointed artistic director and principal conductor making him the first overseas artist to obtain a full-time post within the former Soviet Union. Other well-known conductor and instrumental soloists have performed with the orchestra, including Mstislav Rostropovich, Sviatoslav Richter, Armenian American composer Alan Hovhaness, composer/performer Aram Khachaturian, and Gennady Rozhdestvensky. The orchestra tours on a regular basis throughout Armenia, Russia, the United States, Austria, and Germany. The Armenian Philharmonic Orchestra's recordings, primarily on the ASV label, concentrate on the work of Armenian, Russian, and mid-European composers, such as Khachaturian, Nikolay Rimsky-Korsakov, Dmitry Kabalevsky, Alan Hovhaness, Borodin, Mikhail Glinka, Sergey Rachmaninov, Loris Tjeknavorian, Mikhail Ippolitov-Ivanov, Edgar Sergei Hovhannessian, and Sergey Prokofiev. In 2000, Eduard Topchjan succeeded Tjeknavorian.
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