On June 30, 2019, an Armenian and non-Armenian public in Lebanon was invited to respect and immortalize the memory of the renowned Gomidas Vartabed on the sesquicentennial of his birth. This respect was paid by listening to Gomidas’ own musical creations.
Gomidas Vartabed was a cleric who enriched the Armenian spiritual and lay musical treasury with his talent, hard work, persistence, and passionate will, traversing Western Armenia’s villages and provinces to listen to the peasants and understand their mentality and daily life. He harvested from the lips of older people raw, unrefined, isolated, strung-together songs; he arranged them for choral and orchestral performances. His legacy is rescuing peasant and spiritual songs from oblivion, foreign influences, and—as it turned out—genocidal destruction.