Armenian Government Invites Decker to Perform at Memorial Concert Commemorating 90th Anniversary of Armenian Genocide

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The Armenian Government has officially invited U.S. world musician Daniel Decker to perform at the Memorial Concert in Yerevan, Armenia on April 23 to commemorate the 90th Anniversary of the 1915 Armenian Genocide. Decker will sing Adana,Â? a song that tells the tragic story of the genocide of 1.5 million Armenians during WWI. It is a collaboration between Decker, who wrote the songÂ?s lyrics, and Ara Gevorgian, one of ArmeniaÂ?s premier composers.

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American singer-songwriter Daniel Decker (http://www.danieldecker.com) today announced that the Armenian government has extended an official invitation to him to perform the song “Adana” at a special Memorial Concert it is hosting to commemorate the 90th Anniversary of the 1915 Armenian Genocide. The concert will take place at the Opera and Ballet Academic Theatre in Yerevan, the capitol of Armenia, on Saturday, April 23, 2005 at 7:00 p.m.

The Armenian Opera Orchestra, and Ara Gevorgian, one of Armenia’s premier composers, will accompany Decker’s performance at the Memorial Concert. Armenia’s President, Robert Kocharian, will be attending. Also in attendance will be the head of the Armenian Apostolic Church, His Holiness Karekin II, Supreme Patriarch and Catholicos of All Armenians.

The song “Adana” tells the story of the Armenian Genocide, during which soldiers of the Ottoman Empire forced 1.5 million Armenians into starvation, torture and extermination because they would not renounce their Christian faith. The song is a collaboration between Decker, who wrote its powerful lyrics, and Gevorgian, its composer. “Adana” is already played at the Genocide Memorial in Yerevan, Armenia, whenever visiting foreign dignitaries visit.

Decker met Gevorgian by chance on a trip to Armenia in 2002. They first collaborated with Decker writing the lyrics to a song the composer had written for Armenia’s National Independence Day. “Noah’s Prayer” chronicles the biblical story of Noah and his spiritual journey on the ark to Mt. Ararat. With Gevorgian and the Armenian Opera Orchestra accompanying him, Decker performed “Noah’s Prayer” live in 2002 during a nationally televised outdoor concert with Mt. Ararat looming in the background. Armenia’s President Kocharian, as well as ambassadors from countries around the world, attended the event. After the concert, President Kocharian approached Decker to shake his hand and personally thank him for his participation.

The television broadcast transformed the song “Noah’s Prayer” into an immediate hit and Decker into an instant celebrity in Armenia. The song was repeatedly featured on Armenian radio and television, and Decker gave numerous performances and press interviews. On his last visit to the country in 2004, a reporter and television crew followed him everywhere he went for three days.

It was the day after the 2002 concert that Decker heard Gevorgian’s composition entitled “Adana.” Decker felt it was perfect to tell the story of the Armenian genocide, an issue that moved him deeply, so he arranged to meet Gevorgian the next day. “Before I could tell him my idea to write the about the genocide, he said, ‘Please choose “Adana, and please write about the genocide.’” Decker later discovered that “Adana” is the name of the city in present-day Turkey where one of the first massacres of the Armenian people took place. Thus, a second collaboration was born.

“I wrote ‘Adana’ not only as a way to draw international attention to a terrible tragedy, but as a source of healing to the Armenian people,” explains Decker. Neither modern day Muslim Turkey, nor the United States, an ally of Turkey, has formally recognized the Armenian Genocide. "I am delighted to have the opportunity to perform with Daniel again,” says Gevorgian. “Daniel has done a great thing for the people of Armenia. When you listen to ‘Adana,’ you know that he was meant to write the lyrics of this song to bring greater international awareness to the Armenian Genocide."

In addition to the work Decker has done to garner attention for the genocide, Decker has also been working with relief organizations in Armenia to bring aid to the poorest regions and to those that have been hit the hardest, children and the elderly.

Both “Adana” and “Noah’s Prayer” can be found on Decker’s latest recording entitled, “My Offering,” available on his website. With a musical journey that has taken him to England, Puerto Rico, Canada and Armenia, this CD reflects Decker’s love and appreciation of the many cultures he has experienced. Along with his unique piano stylings, the CD “My Offering” is a rich fusion of world music influences, with flamenco guitars, Armenian duduk, Brazilian samba, Latin jazz, and special performances by the Armenian Philharmonic Orchestra.

For more information about Decker, please visit http://www.danieldecker.com. Please direct press inquiries to Anne Sharp at (818) 994-2309.

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