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Like a graceful river that both complements and continually redefines its landscape, the music of the Vishup Ensemble meanders through vast, storied swaths of Armenian history, at turns surging and gliding into domains that range from myth, lyric poetry, and metaphysics to gleeful ditties and the ploughman’s song. 
— Sona Hamalyan

Vishup was founded in Armenia by flutist, vocalist, and guitarist Arik Grigorian in 2015 when Arik Grigoryan started to work with drummer Vardan Paremuzyan and was called "Arik Bambir Project" at first.Then the project moved to Los Angeles in 2016 and new members joined the band, including vocalist and pianist Areni Agbabian, cellist Artyom Manukyan and drummer Vardan Duvendjian. Then it came back to Armenia and other musicians, including Levon Arakelyan, Hayk Karapetyan, Christin Yeghiazaryan and Amalia Hakobyan joined the group. The ensemble’s repertoire comprises both original material and odes to the art-historical. 

An intricately calibrated straddling of earthy and ethereal, Vishup’s music is driven by the soothing, folk-inflected voice of Arik Grigorian. The singing is deftly woven with understated yet muscular textures of flute, guitar, and drums, making for a lush, wondrous sound. 

Vishup’s original compositions and reinterpretations of classics alike thrive not merely on experimentation per se, but, ultimately, a sense of soaring liberty, of wide-open vistas, where passion  — whether fiery or sublime — is given free rein. Vishup, after all, means “dragon” in Armenian.   

 

Present members:

Arik Bambir - vocal, guitar, flute
Eduard Harutyunyan - percussion
Hayk Karapetyan - armenian woodwinds
Levon Arakelyan - cello
Christin Yeghiazaryan - vocals
Amalya Hakobyan - vocals

Collaborators:

Areni Agbabian - vocals

Artyom Manukyan - cello

Vardan Dubendjian - drums

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