Thirty-Four Years of Hamazkayin Ani Dance Company of Los Angeles
It was in spring of 1974 that the idea of uniting the Armenian youth with a goal to celebrate their national culture and tradition through ethnic dance became a reality as the Hamazkayin Ani Dance Company was formed.
Members of Ani are proud to be Armenian. The mission of the Hamazkayin Armenian Educational and Cultural Society, established 80 years ago, is to express pride of, promote and preserve Armenian arts and culture, as well as to encourage the perpetuation of Armenian life style in the Diaspora. Ani is privileged to represent and adopt these ideals as it own. The vast accomplishments of Ani are a reflection of high standards, upheld by Hamazkayin.
Under the determined leadership of Yeghia Hasholian and Suzy Barseghian-Tarpinian, the Ani dance company has enjoyed extraordinary success throughout the United States and beyond. Performances of Ani were enthusiastically welcomed in Fresno, San Diego, San Francisco, Phoenix, Las Vegas, Baton Rouge, Detroit, Chicago, Washington D.C., Canada, and the Armenian Heritage Cruise in 2008. However, the most significant performances were at the birthplace of our culture and history-in our proverbial homeland, Armenia. The dance company has traversed the globe four times to perform proudly both in Yerevan and Karabagh. It was a supreme honor for Ani to participate in the celebration of the 1700th anniversary of the adoption of Christianity in Armenia in 2001. In the same year, with the help of Armenian soldiers and border patrol, the dance group was given a rare opportunity to stand at the border on the bank of Akhurian River and view the ruins of the ancient city, Ani. Standing so close to the actual grounds of historic Ani, which inspired the name of the dance company, was a deeply emotional moment for the directors and dancers alike.
We would like to give many thanks to renowned Ballet Master Norayr Mehrabyan, of the Republic of Armenia, who has taken Ani Dance Company under his wings and has invested a personal interest in the group since 1994. It is indeed an honor to continue growing under his astute guidance and tutelage
Hamazkayin Ani Dance Company has performed approximately two hundred performances in the past thirty-four years. We have pleased audiences with contemporary, as well as traditional dances, and with our uniquely dazzling costumes, both of which give a standard of excellence to the cultural landscape of our people. Celebrating the 35th anniversary of its existence in 2009, Ani Dance Company is currently readying itself for yet another milestone. Participants will include three generations of past and present dancers.
"The brilliance of dance is a gift. It takes more than a great dancer to make a great company. It takes the dedication and support of every member."