The essence and character of the Armenians is such that they try not to lose sight of any achievement or success of their compatriot, wherever he is. And it should be noted that we have many reasons to be proud of. It has already become a usual thing that we learn about many success stories of our compatriots living in different parts of the world.
However, there are cases when stories and legends about some outstanding personalities spread abroad without reaching the Armenian audience or reaching it in a distorted form. Today's article is about such a case and refers to one of the most widespread names in the European cultural sphere.
Konstantin Ishkhanov of Armenian descent had to leave his house during the days of the massacre of Armenians in Baku and first move to Moscow, and then to distant Malta. The road was a long one, but during this time an art lover, who had already achieved success in business, witnessed an unacceptable phenomenon for him. There were many talented musicians, some of whom were powerless in the face of a seemingly overpowering reality and got broken of not being able to continue their careers. In an interview about these events, he admitted: “Lost talents are my greatest fear.”
This is what prompted Konstantin Ishkhanov to create the European Foundation for Support of Culture (EFSC) after moving to Malta. The foundation created by our compatriot took on a mission of supporting cultural and educational projects that will coordinate the work of young talents and allow worthy musicians to express themselves on international platforms.
In April of this year, Ishkhanov became the only foreigner to receive the highest national award in the field of culture in the nomination “Exceptional Contribution to the Cultural Life of Malta”.
“Throughout the evening, awards, congratulations and words of thanks sounded in Maltese. There was only one exception. The words of gratitude were spoken in English when Konstantin Ishkhanov, president of European Foundation for Support of Culture, entered the stage,” The Maltese Herald wrote.
In early December, Konstantin Ishkhanov was also awarded a medal for his contribution to the development of musical culture as part of a grand charity concert held in the Great Hall of the Moscow Conservatory. The medal was handed to Ishkhanov by rector of the State Musical Pedagogical Institute Valery Vorona.
Having settled in Malta, our compatriot began to actively engage in deepening the Armenian-Maltese relations and popularize the Armenian culture in his country of residence.
“Foreigners are interested in Armenia, its culture. A deeper awareness of this came to me when my son was invited to play at the “New Names” festival in Yerevan at the age of five. Once he returned he showed interest in learning the native language and Armenian dances. After returning to Malta, his first question was: “Can I learn the Armenian language?”, Ishkhanov said.
The foundation of Konstantin Ishkhanov has been engaged in cultural life of Armenia for many years and has been organizing a number of events. These are classical music festivals held in Armenia, and tours of many famous and young Armenian musicians (Hayk Ghazazyan, Nare Aghramanyan, Khachaturian Trio, Armenian State Symphony Orchestra) around the world.
“As an Armenian, I strive to involve my compatriots in all events in Malta as much as possible. Famous musicians are the cultural ambassadors of Armenia in the world. Our rich culture is of great interest in Europe. I consider this extremely important,” Ishkhanov said in an interview.
The main events, that EFSC supported in Armenia last year are the “Contemporary Classics” Composers' Festival and the ballet “Crystal Palace”, which have turned Armenia into a cultural center, by their scale, uniqueness and the involvement of world-famous guests like Yuri Bashmet, Krzysztof Penderetsky, Karl Jenkins, Alexey Shor, Gidon Kremer.