Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Greeting Hasmik at Zvartnots airport, on her return from Moscow and the Tashir awards show, we exchanged hellos and congratulations with other participants, as we moved along with our suitcases, musical instruments, and the like. Participants praised the professionalism of those working at the concert, along with the nice hotel and lavish food and treatment in general.

Later, I found out that those musicals instruments, and even voices, weren’t really needed at the concert.

At such concerts, singers often take recordings of their ensembles, back-up musicians, and the like. Then, during the concert, they sing live, with the recording playing in the background. Such wasn’t the case at the Tashir awards.

Rehearsing, it became clear that the orchestra that was to accompany most singers didn’t in fact play. Microphones weren’t even set up to make things look real.

Those in charge of the sound equipment were amazed when Hasmik said she was going to sing live. “You can’t do that,” they said, “nobody is going to sing live.” After Hasmik insisted, they agreed, saying that at least if only one person sang, they wouldn’t have to readjust the microphones, monitors, etc.

The other singers, startled that Hasmik was going to sing live, began making excuses as to why they were using recordings. “You can’t trust the equipment, microphones, anything can happen,” they insisted.

“The sound and stage people are excellent here, you have nothing to worry about,” Hasmik replied, adding that people came to the concert and paid a normal price to hear people sing, not to hear recordings. She was basically met with silence.

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