Title

Armenian Scenes

I. Morning Song

II. Drinking Song

III. Song of Grief

IV. Wedding Procession

Composed

1984

Composer

Alexander Arutiunian (1920 – 2012)

Composer Information

Alexander Arutiunian was born in Yerevan, Armenia. He graduated in 1941 from the Komitas Conservatory in Yerevan. He studied composition with Litinsky in Moscow at the House of Armenian Culture (1946-48), and then returned to Armenia as Music Director of the Royal Philharmonic Society.

In 1954, he was appointed music director of the Armenian Philharmonic Orchestra, and later received a "People's Artist of the USSR" award in 1970. As a composer, Arutiunian expresses his nationality by incorporating the flavour of ashughner (folk minstrel) improvisations into his work through the use of common melodic and rhythmic characteristics of Armenian folk music.

Publisher

Editions Bim

Duration

20:00

Difficulty

2

Ranking Position

28

Discography

A Musical Voyage by Atlantic Brass Quintet: Summit Records, 2005.

Arutiunian, A.: Armenian Scenes / Andresen, M.: 3 Norwegian Dances / Berg, O.: Brass Quintet / Hindemith, P.: Ploner Musiktag by Arctic Brass: Simax Classics, 1993.

Brass Cantabile by Custom Brass Quintet: CAFUA, 2008.

Types of Instruments/Mutes

Con sord ord. is marked in the trumpet parts.

Final Considerations

This piece was commissioned by Sam Pilafian, American-born tubist from Boston, MA of Armenian descent. Armenian Scenes was premiered in 1984 by the Empire Brass Quintet. This work was a required piece at the 3rd International Competition for Brass Quintets in Narbonne, France, in May 1990.

Arutiunian’s brass quintet is romantic in nature as shown by his use of more traditional harmonic style reminiscent of Khachaturian’s works. The piece is driven by wonderfully memorable melodies offering many musical experience is special to college level ensemble. The optional percussion for the third movements makes this a crowd-pleaser that definitely deserves its place in the top thirty standard pieces of the brass quintet repertoire. According to the publisher: “The four movements which comprise “Armenian Scenes” are pictures of Armenian life: Morning Song, Drinking Song, Song of Grief, and Wedding Procession illustrate the cultural settings and traditions of this southern people, who have been seared by their dramatic history, but have always arisen from the ashes once more.”

©2020 BY NAIRAM SIMOES