This Week in Armenian History

Birth of Anahit Tsitsikian (August 26, 1926)

Anahit Tsitsikian was one of the first Armenian female violinists who earned international recognition.  

She was born on August 26, 1926, in Leningrad (nowadays Saint Petersburg). She started playing violin at the age of six. She moved to Yerevan at the beginning of World War and studied at the Gomidas State Conservatory between 1946 and 1950. She graduated in 1950 and started teaching at her alma mater the same year. In 1954 she finished graduate courses at the Peter Tchaikovsky State Conservatory in Moscow. She became a solist of the Armenian Philharmony in 1961 and earned the title of Emeritus Artist of Armenia in 1967. Tsitsikian defended her doctoral dissertation in Art in 1970. She received the title of professor in 1982. 

Her repertory was especially rich in works from Armenian contemporary composers, of which she was often first interpreter and editor. She founded courses of history of bowed instruments and history of Armenian performing arts. She released four vinyl discs (Moscow) and two CDs (United States). She performed in 27 countries and published the book Armenian Bowing in Art (1977, in Armenian). 

Tsitsikian passed away on May 2, 1999, in Yerevan. The music school No. 21, founded in Yerevan in 1987, was renamed after Anahit Tsitsikian in 2007.