Armenian Ensemble

Armenian Festival

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Armenian Festival presents mostly uptempo traditional Armenian music. Seven instrumentals are sprinkled throughout the songs, including the album-closer, an unexpected cover of Duke Ellington's "Caravan"! Several groups perform on this release. The bulk of the songs are [performed] by the Armenian Song & Dance Ensemble, with a few contributions from the Armenian Orchestra of Folk Instruments and one each from the Armenian State Concert Orchestra and the Armenian Radio Orchestra of Folk Instruments, plus a reverent a cappella piece from the Armenian State Chorus. Songs include the moving "Sari Sirun Yar" (Mountain Beauty), the dance tunes "Jairanik" and "Akhourian Bar," and many more. This release features excellent choral work throughout, with musicians who keep up the pace on duduk, kemancha, and tar.

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