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As Prelude to the 1911-2011, 100th Anniversary of Alan Hovhaness and the 17 May, 2009, dedication of the Alan Hovhaness memorial in his home town of Arlington, Massachusetts, and dedication concert at Arlington's Town Hall, the Alan Hovhaness International Research Centre and the Cristofori Foundation mounted the "All Men are Brothers" memorial run. Pianist Martin Berkofsky started the run on 2 May, 2009, at the 3,165-foot summit of Mt. Monadnock, New Hampshire, a peak which Alan Hovhaness himself had scaled many times in his youth. The All Men are Brothers run successfully concluded on 13 May, 2009, at the Blossom Street Hovhaness/Chakmakjian Arlington, Massachusetts home. The All Men are Brothers run celebrates the universal humanitarian spirit of Hovhaness' Symphony No. 11-All Men are Brothers; Hovhaness' reverence for mountains which he saw as a meeting place between man and God, and a celebration of Hovhaness' father Haroutioun Chakmakjian, who walked as many as 15 miles a day in his later years. Martin Berkofsky's last marathon/concert tour was in 2003 when he celebrated his 60th birthday and recovery from cancer.
CLIMB THE MOUNTAIN EVERY DAY
It was not enough to have known Alan Hovhaness.
It was not enough to have premiered his works "fresh-off-the-press."
It was not enough to have been mentored by one of the most innovative and yet humble musical minds of the entire 20th Century.
Alan Hovhaness had written that Thoreau had compared Mt. Monadnock to Armenia's Ararat. He had climbed it nearly every day for an entire summer, later composing the symphonic movement, Monadnock. His daughter, Jean Nandi, had lived at Monadnock's foot.
It seemed fitting and proper to continue in Alan Hovhaness' very steps, to begin this pilgrimage at New England's Ararat, Alan Hovhaness' mountain.
Monadnock's summit was no stranger to enlightened New Englanders. Ralph Waldo Emerson and Henry David Thoreau had ascended Monadnock. One of Emerson's most famous poems was named
had written one of the first serious naturalist inventories of the mountain.
now a historic Chicago landmark, was named after the New Hampshire peak.
Alan Hovhaness had written, "In 1932 or around that year I played piano in a trio in Shattuck Inn at the foot of Mt. Monadnock and I climbed the mountain every day between the noon concert and evening concert."
"Climb the mountain every day" became a metaphor for Hovhaness' life and career. He worked tirelessly and unceasingly ascending ever greater musical summits and artistic heights the rest of his astonishingly productive life.
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1: Pianist Martin Berkofsky at the 3,165-foot summit of Mount Monadnock, transmitting from the Alan Hovhaness Memorial Station W1H. News of the Hovhaness Centennial was broadcast over the Northeastern United States.
2: Ara Ghazarians, Curator of the Armenian Cultural Foundation, at the summit of Mount Monadnock, holding the symphonic score of Hovhaness' "All Men are Brothers," Symphony No. 11. This score was then carried by Martin Berkofsky from the Monadnock summit to the Hovhaness home at 5 Blossom Street in Arlington, Massachusetts.
CONTINUE MARTIN BERKOFSKY'S JOURNAL, PAGE THREE