A special event took place at Buckingham Palace on 27th October 2015. HRH Prince Charles hosted a charitable Gala Evening for the benefit of British-Armenian charitable projects, Assadour Guzelian reports from London.
The Gala Evening was attended by many dignitaries, including President of Armenia Mr. Serzh Sargsyan, His Holiness Karekin II Catholicos and Supreme Patriarch of All Armenians.
The Gala Evening started with a reception followed by a special concert by the world famous Mariinsky Theatre Orchestra from St. Petersburg, conducted by Maestro Valery Gergiev. The Orchestra performed Debussy’s Prelude a l’apres midi d’un faune, which Maestro Gergiev dedicated to the memory of Contessa Yoko Nagae Ceschina (5 April 1932 – 10 January 2015), a noted patroness of classical music. She was born in Japan and long-time lived in Italy.
Tchaikovsky’s Rococo Variations was breathtakingly performed by the orchestra and young soloist (cellist) Narek Hakhnazaryan, 1st Prize Gold Medal winner of XIV International Tchaikovsky Completion, 2011.
Accompanied by the orchestra the Grand Prix winner of XV International Tchaikovsky Competition, July 2015, Mongolian baritone Ariunbaatar Ganbaatar sang Tchaikovsky’s Yeletsky’s aria from Queen of Spades.
After Verdi’s Overture to La Forza del destino and Wagner’s Prelude to Lohengrin, Act I, masterfully performed by Mariinsky Theatre Orchestra under the magical baton of Maestro Valery Gergiev, the artistic part of the evening concluded.
In his speech Dr. Armen Sarkissian thanked HRH Prince Charles for his untiring efforts and dedication to both The Saving of Dumfries House and Yerevan My Love projects. He also thanked everyone attending the Gala Evening for their generous donations.
In his turn HRH Prince Charles expressed his gratitude to Dr. Armen Sarkissian and all the benefactors, particularly Haik and Elza Didizian and Vatche and Tamar Manoukian.
“Yerevan My Love” (YML) is a heritage-led regeneration project dedicated to preserving architecturally significant buildings in Yerevan and, by adaptive reuse, to improve the life experience of disabled children, young people and disadvantaged families.
Following the successful charity evenings in Windsor Castle (2010), Buckingham Palace (2011) and Yerevan (2013), Yerevan My Love has been working on restoring and revitalising the oldest neighbourhoods of the city.
The proceeds of this year’s fundraising will be dedicated to helping Syrian Armenian children and their educational needs. Thousands of families have escaped the devastating war in Syria and have found refuge in Armenia. Beyond reconstruction, a key dimension of YML is social impact: to improve the education and life experience of children and young people, especially orphans and those who come from disadvantaged communities.
Photo was taken during the first “Yerevan My Love” Gala Evening