Khachaturian | Chicago Reader

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Using a script based on Aram Khachaturian's writings, Eric Bogosian narrates this 2003 portrait of the Armenian composer in the first person. The effect is jarring at first—the film opens with footage of Khachaturian's 1978 funeral, and we hear him casting aspersions on some prominent mourners—but thereafter director Peter Rosen sticks to conventional documentary techniques, elegantly blending archival footage, vibrant musical performances, and interviews with colleagues, relatives, and scholars. Drawn to Moscow in his teens by the promise of the revolution, Khachaturian became a musical luminary, but in 1948 he was officially denounced as a bourgeois formalist—an especially wounding charge, given how heavily he drew on the Armenian folk tunes of his youth. 76 min.

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