2021/07/09

Komitas


There are numerous messages delivered from graffiti, poster or sticker found on the street here, in Paris. I am sure there will be some trace of the “yellow vest” - mouvement des gilets jaunes; a chaos agitated by the increase of fuel tax. My new friend Li, who studied & working here for over 18 years, she told me that actually the amount increased was minimal, but demonstration/ protest/ strike whatever we call are frequently happen in France, i.e.: they get used to & nothing to be afraid of.

Liberté (Freedom), Égalité (Equality), Fraternité (fraternity / brotherhood), ou la mort (or death*) - is the “national motto” of France. There may be still argument of whether the Declaration of the Rights of Man & of the Citizen on 26 August 1789 should include all of them in exact wordings, especially the last one;  but no matter how, it’s originated in the French Revolution. The Tricolor flag of France are embodying all the principle of the Revolution- Liberté (Blue), Égalité (white) and Fraternité (Red).

The memorial statue of Komitas in Paris

 Walking along, there is Mémorial de la Shoah - a memorial retraces the history of French Jews after the liberation of Auschwitz concentration camp, a sad history of 76,000 Jews deported from France. I didn’t visit even I’ve passing by twice, I am afraid there will be too “much” for my first trip, but it will be in my itinerary in the next visit.

So, who is Komitas? A statue that I’ve seen in Jardin d’Erevan. I don’t know who he was? But the form of statue clearly tells me it is not a display of an art piece, something serious,... to remember.

 


“ en Hommage a

Komitas

Comositeur, musicologue

et aus

1500000 victimes

du génocide arménien de 1915

perpetre dans L‘empire ottoman“

 

Lettering on the stone base

If we are thinking of the War Crime, Holocaust- Jewish was the first comes into our mind; but there is another one, Genocide- Armenian. 

Komitas was the survivor in this genocide, he was an Armenian priest, composer, a super talented musicologist, founder of the Armenian national school of music. If he didn’t collected & transcribed over 3000 pieces of Armenian folk music during his work in life time, the cultural heritage of Armenia will be vanished together with the genocide, no one will even remember the existing of this history. 

To Komitas, although he could survive after released from concentrate camp, the shadow of death together with his fear of losing his lifetime work in Armenian music that finally drove him nuts, he was transferred to stay in Paris where his friend was there... but weakness & insane were the only melody left in his last years, who died in 1935.

I have to admit that I am quite lost & depress while preparing this post, when I’ve watched the film online “Music to Madness (The Story of Komitas)” , in order to find who he was? The unfold of history was intolerable, up to this moment, I can’t find an “excuse” for “human” to expel/ destroy a nation and I am not intend to find one.

 

-  Survivors of the Armenians “re-birth” and wide spread around the world.
- Armenia was the First Nations to adopt Christianity as a state religion, it’s roots go backs to 1st century AD. (Wiki data)

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