Nov 30th, 2009

A stage full of stars at the last MClub Awards in 2006.

LOS ANGELES-The last time Horizon TV's "M Club" hosted an awards show
in December of 2006, tickets sold out weeks in advance. Weeks prior
to the award show featuring a who's who of Armenian and international
music stars, tickets to the event were being auctioned at five times
their face value on eBay, the Internet auction site.

>>From hard-to-score tickets to a star-studded program with performers
featured in the hottest Armenian music videos of the year, the third
annual "M Club" awards show is again the center of media hype in
hyper drive.

"This is the Armenian version of the Oscars, Emmys, Grammies, and
People's Choice Awards, all together in the same venue, on the same
night," says "M Club" producer Sevak Petrosyan. "Dozens of stars are
flying in from Yerevan, Europe, Moscow, and South America to be part
of the music awards show."

At the Meridian Studios in Burbank, videographers, technicians,
animators, and producers are burning the midnight oil to be as ready
as possible for a flawless award show on Sunday, December 13.

"People are used to seeing the biggest and best shows mainstream
Hollywood can offer," says technical director Karen Poghosyan. "When
they come to the Nokia, they expect a smooth, fast-paced, interactive,
entertaining, dazzling show, and we are ready to give them a bang
for their buck."

Editor and graphic artist Nora Demirjian is also working overtime to
be part of the 16-camera set-up that will film the concert and awards
show from every possible angle for future broadcast.

"We're all very excited to not just see the show but be part of the
show," says Nora Demirjian. "I cannot believe all the stars we seen on
music videos and hear on the radio from all over the world and Armenia
are going to be together on one stage. I can't wait to see who wins."

The million dollar question at the million dollar show this year is who
will walk away with such accolades as "Best Male Singer of the Year,"
"Best Female Singer of the Year," and "Director of the Year."

Among those to be honored for various accomplishments in their short
or long careers will be French-Armenian superstar Charles Aznavour.

System of a Down's lead singer, Serj Tankian, is rumored to be
gearing up with his father, for a live performance with his father
Khatchadour. The father and son musicians are about to release Serj's
father's debut album titled "Inchbess Moranank" (How can we forget?).

The 2006 "M Club" Music Video Awards were full of emotional and
heart-rending moments Armenchik's performance with the grandson of Aram
Asatryan. Armenchik's tribute to the legendary performer had come only
week's after Asatryan's death of a heart attack in November of 2006.

A second emotional tribute was a performance by Andre in memory of
Varduhi Vardanyan, who had been killed in a car crash in October of
2006. She was honored posthumously as "Best Female Singer of the Year."

In addition to Armenchik's return to the upcoming "M Club" Music
Video Awards and Armenian Music Awards double-wow show, pop stars
are Nune Yesayan, Shushan Petrosyan, Reincarnation, the Armenoids,
and pop, rabiz, rap, and old time favorites like Ruben Matevosyan,
and Diasporan favorites like Harout Pamboukjian and Karnig Sarkissian
are also expected to participate.

As noticeable from the range of music genres and tastes, Armenian
music in the 21st century seems as borderless and boundless as
Armenians in the four-corners of the world. Over the past year,
Horizon TV's "M Club" has featured top hits ranging from Melineh
Kurdian's American folk sound of guitar and voice, to Apeh Jan's
Armenian rap videos. Viewers have voted for Mihran's English rap
videos as their favorite as much as voting for Inga and Anoush's
Eurovision hit "Nor Bar" (New Dance).

"In one week, we have people requesting pop music from the late Aram
Asatryan and jazz from Tatevik Hovhannisyan," says "M Club" show
hostess Tatevik Ekezian. "One minute we have Zulal with a traditional
folk song, and the next minute we are playing Armenian rap, followed
by Harout and Karnig."

Call it an identity crisis on speed, the modern Armenian pop scene
being honored by the producers of the "M Club" television show resides
nowhere, but also somewhere between Yerevan and Los Angeles.

Like its multinational refugee and immigrant fans, Armenian pop has
found a home where American commercialism and consumerism intersect
with Armenian ingenuity and tech-savvy "hye" merchants of pop. On
December 13, that home will be at the 7,100-seat Nokia Theater at LA
Live, in the heart of downtown Los Angeles.

"It's not often that Armenians from all over the world come together
with their favorite singers all in one place, says nominee and jazz
singer Arthur Ispirian. "We are coming together as one people in one
theater on one night, and there with us will be the greatest Armenian
musicians of all time like Charles Aznavour and Serj Tankian."

The producers of this extravaganza at the Nokia have between them
nearly four decades of entertainment experience. Sevak Petrosyan of
the Meridian Studios produces Horizon TV's "M Club." The show is a
weekly countdown of the most requested music videos. Top pop artists
often appear with hostess Tatevik to talk about their new albums and
thank viewers for their votes.

The second producer of the Nokia blockbuster is Arthur Kokozian, who
is heading the 10th annual Armenian Music Awards. Prior to the two
awards shows coming together, the Armenian Music Awards had produced
nine award shows that have attracted a who's who of musicians and
top mainstream recording industry producers and agents.

"This is the one big opportunity our Armenian artists have to show
off their art and their stage presence to non-Armenian industry
insiders who come out to scope out new and ethnic talent," says Arthur
Kokozian. "Over the past decade, we've had a number of success stories
of Armenian music finding its way to motion picture soundtracks and
television shows thanks to the exposure award shows like this give
our artists from Armenia and the Diaspora."

For experienced performers and newcomers alike, performing in the
global Armenian spotlight is a dream come true.

"I could have never imagined that I would be on a stage like this,"
said rapper and hip-hop artist Mikael Abrahamyan at the 2nd annual "M
Club" Music Video Awards show in 2006. His group Hay Tghek and their
hit song "Amara" had been popular with audiences in the Homeland and
diaspora. Abrahamyan said that he wasn't surprised by the success
of Armenian rap, because he believes Armenians don't have borders,
boundaries, or limitations.

From: Emil Lazarian | Ararat NewsPress