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System Of A Down to receive arts award for raising awareness of Armenian Genocide

Rockers System Of A Down are to receive a special award for raising awareness of the Armenian Genocide, Contact Music reports. 

The Armenian-American musicians are the recipients of the 2015 Parajanov-Vartanov Institute Award, a prize named after groundbreaking filmmakers Sergei Parajanov and Mikhail Vartanov, who fought persecution for their work in the Soviet Union.

Serj Tankian’s band launched the Wake Up The Souls Tour earlier this year  to mark 100 years since the Armenian Genocide, in which up to 1.5 million citizens were systematically murdered by the nation’s government.

The tour culminated with the group’s first ever show in the country on the anniversary of the start of the atrocity on 24 April.

“(The) 2015 Parajanov-Vartanov Institute Award will honor the Grammy-winning rock band System Of A Down for their virtuous commitment to justice exemplified by their historic 2015 Wake Up the Souls tour,” a statement from the Parajanov-Vartanov Institute reads.

The prize will be handed to the band at a ceremony in Los Angeles on 21 October.

Previous recipients of the award include Hollywood director Martin Scorsese, who accepted the honour in 2014 for his work with The Film Foundation’s World Cinema Project on the restoration of Parajanov’s 1969 film The Color of Pomegranates.

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