EDITORIAL: The Unspoken Nobel Prize Speeches

Literature has always played a significant role in Armenian history. Our past is decorated with great poets and authors alike. However, due to the unfortunate events our nation has suffered, many have failed to receive the credit and recognition that they are due.

 

Admirable journalist Artur Bakhtamyan’s ‘The Unspoken Nobel Prize Speeches’ is dedicated to some of our greatest writers and the works that they produced in their short lives. Ruben Sevag, Krikor Zohrab, Daniel Varoujan and Siamanto were literary geniuses whose writings have stood the test of time, but who did not survive the atrocities of 1915. The film features an interpretation of the four martyred intellectuals’ acceptance speeches had they been present to receive the Nobel prizes that they deserved. The speeches are based on the biographical facts of the authors and their specific intellect and works, which combined, successfully mirror the voices of the legendary writers.

The international premiere of this film was hosted by Hamazkayin UK and featured an appearance from director Artur Bakhtamyan, who explained the concept and background of the film. This followed the screening of the film, which featured the aforementioned speeches in addition to extensive footage filmed in Eastern Turkey, the historic Armenian lands where the writers were from. The scenic shots in accompaniment with the eloquent rhetoric were a painful reminder of the great losses suffered after the genocide – from our beautiful homelands to the artistic talents of our ancestors.

  
Hamazkayin UK Executive Committee with Artur Bakhtamyan and His Grace Bishop Hovakim Manukyan

Following the screening, and a few congratulatory words from His Grace Bishop Hovakim Manukyan, the opportunity arose for Mr. Bakhtamyan to take questions from the audience, which led to active discussions about our history, language and the experiences of the team filming in contemporary Turkey.

Special thanks must be given to Hamazkayin UK for providing the Armenian community of London the opportunity to view this stunning film, and to Mr. Artur Bakhtamyan and his team for producing a beautiful homage to the unsung heroes of literature.

Their legacies live on through their stanzas.

— Ike Stepanian

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