The Letters of Komitas Vardapet

Nazareth Seferian

The Letters of Komitas Vardapet

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Komitas Vardapet is the most significant and iconic figure of Armenia. He is revered by all Armenians. A tragic figure and the genius of Armenian music, he survived the Armenian genocide, yet his story remains at the cultural center of the Armenian people and nation. All Armenians, both in Armenia and in the diaspora, recognize their soul and find their spiritual nature in Komitas. It is often said that the Armenian people continue today to live through him and his musical legacy.


Much of the creative legacy of Komitas, music, papers, manuscripts, were destroyed or lost. Today, there is growing world-wide interest in Komitas’ music with recordings, his concerts and performances.


During his lifetime, Komitas was highly regarded by his musical colleagues everywhere, including in Europe. He traveled extensively to the major musical capitals of Europe, Berlin, Paris, Vienna and more. He also maintained a full and lively correspondence with churchmen, musical colleagues and intellectuals in many countries. His letters give us an opportunity to understand this brilliant musician who possessed remarkable features of charm, modesty, an acutely perceptive mind and an original wit.


This new volume of The Letters of Komitas was first published in Armenia in 2014 and now, the English language world will have access to this important and unique volume.


In Letters of Komitas Vardapet, the reader has intimate access to the human side of Komitas. Within that towering musical figure, there is a regular man who jokes with his correspondents, laments the state of Armenian music corrupted by foreign influences, and takes pride in his contribution to Armenian identity. The letters in the book explore Komitas' relationship with the Church and demonstrate how the man now considered a musical genius was once the subject of criticism by some of his contemporaries. There are recordings of Komitas' voice available online that feature him singing some of his compositions. But Letters of Komitas gives readers access to the voice of the everyday human being who lived within that musical giant and provides insights into the psyche and spirit of this unforgettable figure of Armenian history.

This book contains 184 letters written by Komitas and 37 letters he received . It is the most complete collection to date, carefully edited. Each letter includes detailed background and notations for the reader


International Studies/ HIstory/ Music

Pub. Date: December 16th 2021


Available at your local bookseller or order from Mosaic Press / IPG(US)/ Gazelle Book Services(UK/EU) / Manda Group(Canada)


6 X 9 inches

496 Pages, fully annotated

with photo section


Price: $35.95 USD $39.95 CDN

ISBN PB : 9781771613583

PDF: 9781771613590

EPUB: 9781771613606

KINDLE: 9781771613613