"Parajanov actually was very-very lonely"

November 29 2014

Professor of the Yerevan Conservatory Marine Abrahamyan's memories
Recently, "Aram Khachaturyan" Concert Hall hosted pianist, Honored
Artist of Armenia, Yerevan Conservatory Professor Marine Abrahamyan's
and her daughter, author and performer, and winner of international
competitions Eva Voskanyan's concert, which was dedicated to the 90th
anniversary of Sergei Parajanov. In the conversation with "Aravot",
Marine Abrahamyan recalled an episode. Exactly 25 years ago, when she
was hosted with her husband in Parajanov's apartment in Tbilisi, and
the maestro was just taken home from the hospital. Perhaps, having the
feeling of his time to "travel" to the heavenly life, with a childish
shyness, Parajanov requested her to devote one evening to him. Later,
he took off his photograph with Marcello Mastroianni from the wall,
signed it and dedicated it to Marine. And as to when the acquaintance
with Parajanov was held, the pianist said, "My husband, Pavel
Voskanyan, when living in Kiev, he was the concertmaster of
violoncellists' group at the National Opera House, and at the same
time was playing with solo concerts. In 1955, after the next solo
concert broadcast over Kiev television, Parajanov called him on the
phone and asked him to meet. The prominent film director also had an
education in music and was working at Dovzhenko Film Studio. From the
moment of meeting, they made friends and became good friends..." During
the conversation, Marine Abrahamyan listed Parajanov's films, one by
one, including "Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors" and "The Color of
Pomegranates", noting that these two full-length films once were
imposed to the Soviet censorship. "Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors"
with its abundance of national costumes, interesting and innovative,
and unusual presentation of rural life, received numerous
international awards, bringing fame to Parajanov. And "The Color of
Pomegranates" that tells about troubadour Sayat-Nova is a masterpiece
on the background of historic and colorful Caucasus... How could such a
talented individual be imprisoned...? Many celebrities: artists, writers
and film directors, responded to this unjust verdict. Despite this,
Parajanov was released four years later being sentenced, moreover, by
intervention of the French surrealist Louis Aragon and other
celebrities. For many years, Parajanov was banned to shoot films, and
in early 1980s, Parajanov was again in the shooting arena. In 1984,
his "The Legend of Suram Fortress" was screened, then "Ashik Kerib"
films, which were the Master's multi-color reaction to his earlier
works. In his late years, he was shooting his autobiographical "The
Confession" film, which remained unfinished. The Maestro passed away
in 1990. This unfinished work was completely used in Michael
Vardanov's "Parajanov. The Last Spring" documentary film," informed
Marine Abrahamyan. She also informed that in 2010, Parajanov-Vardanov
Institute was established in Hollywood to study the works of these
masters, joyfully proving the high rating of this institution.
Referring to the concert in memory of Parajanov, which was welcomed by
the Armenian audience with great warmth, we inquired whether when
choosing the program, Parajanov's preferences in the art of music were
considered, Ms. Abrahamyan replied, "Undoubtedly... Parajanov was
eagerly listened to Beethoven, Chopin, Babajanyan, Khachaturyan... Every
time, he was saying, how cordial are these sounds. When meeting with
us, Parajanov was always saying, Pavel, Marina, do you know that we
are bound to each other by a friendly spirit, flavored with art." At
the end of our conversation, Marine Abrahamyan make one remark,
"According to the first impression, Parajanov was surrounded by
colleagues, the fans of his art... actually he was very-very lonely."

Read more at: http://en.aravot.am/2014/11/29/167976/