Music Program

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Celebrating Armenian
Music, Arts, and Culture

The Armenian Music Program at UCLA is an academic program dedicated to the study and performance of Armenian music. It offers public concerts, workshops, community outreach events, undergraduate courses on Armenian music and dance, and fellowships for UCLA students to study and perform the diverse styles and repertoires of Armenian music.

May 23 2024
Music of Java and Armenia
The Music of Java Ensemble and the Armenian Music Ensemble showcase traditional music from these regions on the same stage. The Music of Java Ensemble centers on the music of Central Javanese gamelan, a percussion-dominated musical ensemble featuring tuned bronze gongs, bronze metallophones, and drums, along with flutes, zither, vocals, and spiked fiddle. The ensemble
Schoenberg Hall
Jun 1 2024
Fourth Annual Day of Armenian Music, Arts, and Culture
The fourth annual Day of Armenian Music, Arts, and Culture at UCLA will be a day-long festival spotlighting the depth and breadth of the Armenian Music Program through a variety of engaging events. The program will commence with a reading by poet and musician Raffi Joe Wartanian who teaches undergraduate writing at UCLA. Accompanied by
Schoenberg Music Building
Our Recordings
Our Recordings

Explore all recordings here

Following its lauded recent performances in Yerevan, Armenia, the UCLA VEM Ensemble is featured in the newly released CD of Armenian Music, “Modulation Necklace,” by the Naxos-distributed label, New Focus Recordings. Celebrating the aesthetic diversity of the post-Soviet era Armenian music, the CD highlights a selection of works from distinguished contemporary Armenian composers Artur Avanesov, Ashot Zohrabyan, Michel Petrossian, and Artashes and Ashot Kartalyan. Along with the VEM Ensemble, Modulation Necklace also features internationally renowned musicians Scott St. John, Antonio Lysy, Varty Manouelian, Movses Pogossian, Katisse Buckingham, Dustin Donahue, as well as UCLA alumni Charles Tyler and Niall Ferguson.

Dan Lippel, President of New Focus Recordings, praised the album. “Violinist Movses Pogossian has assembled this illuminating collection of contemporary music from Armenia…revealing a vibrant repertoire whose aesthetics are as outward-looking as they are grounded in their reverence of centuries-old culture.” Highlighting the best of contemporary Armenian Composers, “Modulation Necklace” is a true celebration of Armenian music as an art form and a testament to the rich history and heritage which it tributes. The UCLA VEM ensemble’s participation in the album is a significant achievement, which upholds the noble mission of the Armenian Music Program.

Proceeds of this CD will benefit the UCLA Armenian Music Program.
The CD is available on Amazon and Apple Music.

Revisit Our Past Events

Intersections: Armenian Classical Composers
Serenade with a Dandelion: 4 CD-Set Album Launch Concert
Celebration of Aram Khachaturian's 120th Birth Anniversary

Lani Hall | November 17, 2023

Watch the Aram Khachaturian concert

Third Annual Day of Armenian Music at UCLA

Schoenberg Hall and Courtyard | May 2023

Newsletter: Modulation Necklace

Our Media & Press Appearances

More News
More News
More News
Third Annual Day of Armenian Music to Feature Noted Armenian Composer, Artur Avanesov
In 2013, the Armenian Music Program was launched at UCLA with a single ensemble-in-residence, the string quartet VEM. The ensemble performed on campus and conducted a few outreach programs in what were admittedly modest beginnings. A lot has changed in ten years.  When the program hosts its third-annual Day of Armenian Music on May 26
VEM Ensemble Sets out on 2023 Eastern U.S. Tour
The VEM Ensemble of the Armenian Music Program at The UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music is coming to Detroit, Boston and Montreal as part of a tour sponsored by the Tekeyan Cultural Association (TCA) of the United States and Canada, with full concerts on, respectively, May 9, 11 and 13, held with local co-sponsoring
VEM Ensemble's International Tour
The VEM Ensemble has just completed its week-long tour of Armenia. Next up is “Resonances: The Music of Armenia” at the Hammer Museum on Wednesday, April 19, 2023 at 7:30 p.m. The VEM Ensemble of the UCLA Armenian Music Program has just returned from its March 2023 tour of Armenia. The tour included ten workshops and outreach

Learn More About Our Leadership Team

Melissa Bilal
The Promise Chair in Armenian Music, Arts, and Culture, Director of Armenian Music Program
Movses Pogossian
Distinguished Professor of Violin; Founder and Advisor, Armenian Music Program - Music Performance
Mary Sekayan
Coordinator of Armenian Music Program
Armen Adamian
Instructor of Armenian Woodwinds; Ph.D. Student in Ethnomusicology
Natalie Kamajian
Instructor of Beginning Armenian Dance; Ph.D. Student in Culture and Performance
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