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The Many Forms of Storytelling

June 18 @ 11:00 am - 12:30 pm +04

About the Event: 

A discussion on storytelling with published author and professor Micheline Aharonian Marcom and writer and actress Sona Tatoyan, moderated by writer and translator Dr. Shushan Avagyan.

About the Speaker(s):

Micheline Aharonian Marcom is the author of eight books, including a trilogy of books about the Armenian Genocide and its aftermath in the 20th century. She has received fellowships and awards from the Lannan Foundation, the Whiting Foundation, and the U.S. Artists’ Foundation. In 2022, she was a finalist for the Neustadt International Prize for Literature. Her first novel, Three Apples Fell From Heaven, was a New York Times Notable Book and runner-up for the PEN/Hemingway Award for First Fiction. Her second novel, The Daydreaming Boy, won the PEN/USA Award for Fiction. In 2008, Marcom taught in Beirut, Lebanon on a Fulbright Fellowship. Marcom is a Professor of Creative Writing at the University of Virginia.

Sona Tatoyan is a first-generation Syrian-Armenian-American stage and film actress with bases in Berlin, Los Angeles (LA), Aleppo, and Yerevan. She is a graduate of the William Esper Studio in NYC, where she studied with the legendary Bill Esper. An accomplished stage artist, Tatoyan was featured in the world premieres of José Rivera’s Brainpeople at The American Conservatory Theater, Massacre (Sing to your Children) at The Goodman Theater, and Boleros for the Disenchanted, 2008 winner of the Outstanding Ensemble Connecticut Critics Awards, at Yale Repertory Theater, among others. Tatoyan’s feature film debut was the lead role in The Journey (2002), the first independent American film ever shot in Armenia. The Journey won the Audience Award at the Milan International Film Festival in 2002. Alongside Isaac Saboohi, Tatoyan co-created the event 1001 Nights, a celebration of Middle Eastern music, movement, storytelling, and food, twice produced in LA in 2021. Upcoming: Armenia Summer 2024.

Tatoyan created and produced Azad storytelling through her non-profit, Hakawati. Together with two-time Obie-ward-winning theater artist Jared Mezzocchi, Tatoyan created the multimedia iteration of Azad entitled Azad (the rabbit and the wolf), which received development support from The Vineayard Theater in NYC in January of 2023, followed by the inaugural University of Connecticut Global Affairs Digital Media residency in May 2023, a Harvard ArtLab residency in September 2023, and a Wake Forest University Character and Leadership residency in January/February 2024.

Tatoyan’s writing/directing debut short film, Toujours, was a selection at the Arpa International Film Festival 2012. She is currently writing the pilot for her TV series in development, entitled Three Apples Fell From Heaven.

Dr. Shushan Avagyan is the author of the experimental novels Girq-anvernagir (A Book, Untitled, 2006) and Zarubyani kanayq (The Women of Zarubyan Street, 2014). She has translated into English a volume of Shushanik Kurghinian’s poetry and the critical works of Viktor Shklovsky and Boris Arvatov. She teaches at the American University of Armenia (AUA), coordinates AUA’s Graduate Certificate in Translation program, and directs AUA Press.

Language: English


June 18
11:00 am - 12:30 pm +04
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College of Humanities & Social Sciences (CHSS)
+374 60 69 40 40; +374 60 612709
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