(Famous Armenian People / Famous Armenians)
Armenians, scattered all over the world (mostly because of the 1915 Armenian Genocide in the territory of their historical homeland – Western Armenia under the rule of and conducted by the Ottoman Empire), have made their mark in many countries and in various fields.
Regardless of the sphere, be it sciences, arts, politics or show-business, there are a number of outstanding and famous Armenians. This time, let us introduce 10 of these famous Armenian people in the world!
Famous Armenian people 1) HENRIKH MKHITARYAN
Born on 21 January, 1989, Henrikh Mkhitaryan is a worldwide known Armenian footballer who currently plays for German club, Borussia Dortmund and captains the national team of Armenia.
Mkhitaryan is also Armenia’s all-time top goal scorer that has made many Armenians proud of him. He has scored sixteen goals in fifty-five international matches since his debut in January, 2007.
Mkhitaryan has been chosen as “Armenian Footballer of the Year” five times (every year since 2009, except 2010). In 2012, he was named in UEFA’s Top 100 players by UEFA European Football Yearbook 2012–13.
Henrikh has been voted as the CIS Footballer of the Year in 2012, making him the first Armenian footballer to be named the best player from CIS countries. Henrikh received the award again in 2013. Mkhitaryan’s devoted fans in Armenia have given him the nickname Heno so please call him “Heno” if you happen to meet him in Armenia!
This young man actually has avery cute look too. This is why Heno is especially popular and loved among female fans not only due to his professional approach and scored goals number. He should be the representative of young famous Armenians.
Famous Armenian people 2) CHARLES AZNAVOUR
Born Shahnour Aznavourian (on 22 May 1924), Charles Aznavour has been a famous French Armenian singer, actor, songwriter, public and social activist and, after all, a diplomat.
He has been known to the world for his unique tenor voice; clear in his upper notes and with profound low reaches as well.Aznavour has written almost 1200 songs. He is probably the most famous Armenian of recent decades.
In 1998, he was even recognized as the Entertainer of the Century by CNN. He was also recognized as the century’s outstanding performer, edging out other stars such as Elvis Presley and Bob Dylan with nearly 18% of the total vote.
Shortly after the 1988 earthquake in Armenian city, Spitak, he established the charity organization called “Aznavour for Armenia”. In 2009, he was appointed as ambassador of the Republic Armenia to Switzerland, as well as Armenia’s permanent delegate to the United Nations.
Aznavour is definitely the longest standing “A list” star still filling major halls and venues all over the world despite his respective age (92 years old!). He must be one of the greatest famous Armenians in the world.
Famous Armenian people 3) VICTOR HAMBARDZUMYAN
Born on 18 September, 1908 – died on 12 August, 1996, Victor Hambardzumyan was an outstanding Armenian scientist who worked in the spheres of stellar astronomy, physics of stars, dynamics of stellar systems and cosmogony of stars and galaxies, making a significant contribution to mathematical physics as well.
In 1946, shortly after World War II, Hambardzumyan became the founder of Byurakan Observatory, serving as president of the Academy of Sciences of Armenia for a very long period and also as the President of the International Astronomical Union as well as the President of the International Council of Scientific Unions twice.
Hambardzumyan was a foreign member of numerous international academies, such as the Royal Society, the United States National Academy of Sciences, and the Indian Academy of Sciences. Among his significant awards are the Gold Medal of the Royal Astronomical Society, the Bruce Gold Medal, the Hero of Socialist Labor and National Hero of Armenia.
Victor Hambardzumyan will remain forever as one of the most distinguished scientists of the 20th century.
Famous Armenian people 4) KERKOR “KIRK” KERKORIAN
Kirk Kerkorian was an American Armenian businessman, investor and philanthropist. He was born on June, 1917 and died in 2015. He was the president and chief executive officer of “Tracinda Corporation” with his private holding company based in Beverly Hills (California).
Kerkorian is widely famous for having been one of the most important figures and famous Armenians in the shaping of Las Vegas. He was also described as the “father of the mega-resort”. He built the world’s largest hotel in Las Vegas three times; the International Hotel, the MGM Grand Hotel and the MGM Grand.
An American of Armenian origin, Kerkorian granted more than billion dollars for charity purposes in Armenia through his “Lincy Foundation”. It was initially focused and concentrated on rebuilding Spitak city after the 1988 earthquake. In 2000 “Time” magazine named Kerkorian as the 10th largest donor in the US. He was entitled as National Hero of Armenia, being awarded with the highest state award in 2004.
Famous Armenian people 6) ARMEN DZHIGARKHANYAN
Born on 3 October, 1935, Dzhigarkhanyan is one of the most renowned Armenian actors among films and stages. He can also be considered as Armenian and Soviet era living actor.
He has appeared in more films than any other Armenian or Russian actors with more than 250 characters in various movies. This has made him one of the most famous Armenians in CIS region.
In 1996, after almost 30 years on the stage, Dzhigarkhanyan founded his own drama theater in Moscow which is very popular among theatre-loving society.
Famous Armenian people 6) LEVON ARONYAN
Aronyan is an Armenian chess Grandmaster and one of the most famous Armenians today. He was born on 6 October, 1982. In March, 2014, this young guy was ranked second in the world in FIDE rating list and currently, he is the fourth highest rated player in chess modern history.
Aronian won the Chess World Cup 2005. He led the Armenian national team to the Gold medals in Turin in 2006, and in Dresden (2008) and Istanbul (2012) at Chess Olympics and at the World Team Chess Championship in Ningbo (2011).
Levon Aronyan won the FIDE Grand Prix in 2008–2010 that qualified him as a candidate of tournament for the World Chess Championship in 2012. He also became World Chess Champion in 2006 and 2007, World Rapid Chess Champion in 2009 and World Blitz Chess Champion in 2010. In 2015, Levon won the 3rd Annual Sinquefield Cup.
Aronyan has been the leading Armenian chess player since the early 2000s. His popularity in Armenia has led him to being called as a celebrity, and a hero even among famous Armenians. He was named the best sportsman of Armenia in 2005 and was awarded with the title of Honoured Master of Sport of the Republic of Armenia in 2009.
Famous Armenian people 7) ALAIN PROST
Prost was born on 24, February 1955 and he is a former French racing driver of Armenian descent. He was born in France, in the family of André Prost (French) and Marie-Rose Karatchyan (Armenian).
He is a 4-time Formula One Drivers’ Champion. In 1987-2001, Alain was holding record for most Grand Prix victories. Unfortunately, Schumacher surpassed Prost’s total of 51 victories at the 2001 Belgian Grand Prix though.
In 1999, Prost received the “World Sports Awards of the Century” in the category of motor sport. He was given a nickname “The Professor” for intellectual and professional approach he had toward competition. If you love F1, you should have known him probably, shouldn’t you?
Famous Armenian people 8) SHAHAN ARZRUNI
Shahan Arzruni is an ethnic Armenian classical composer, pianist, lecturer, ethnomusicologist, producer and writer. Being born in Turkey,Istanbul on 8th of June, 1943. He currently resides in New York of the United States. Arzruni’s family name belongs to Artsruni, an ancient Armenian dynasty. This fact has made him Shahan Arzruni outstanding among famous Armenians.
By the way, there are very few people left who are representatives of those ancient kingdom generations and hold their surnames. Due to this reason, he sounds very interesting even for you, isn’t he?
The composer was truly motivated by ethnic awareness in the United States. He constantly investigated and even now continues to investigate the roots of Armenian musical heritage.
Shahan Arzruni also performs research on traditional Armenian music. During his musical activity, he has recorded a 3-disc anthology of Armenian piano music, has been a co-producer in an 8-disc set of instrumental and vocal Armenian music. He also delivered various works, papers, organized symposia for such institutions as Harvard University, Columbia University and University of Michigan at Ann Arbor.
Famous Armenian people 9) SERJ TANKIAN (System of a Down)
Born on August 21, 1967, Serj is a Lebanese Armenian singer, composer, songwriter, poet and political activist who currently resides in the US. If you likes rock music, you would probably know this guy. He is one of the famous Armenians people, who do not know Armenia, know.
Tankian is mainly known as the lead vocalist and songwriter of one of the best and such a worldwide known rock band “System of a Down” which was formed by four Armenian friends in 1994.
During his musical activity and career, Serj has released 5 albums (with System of a Down), 1 with Arto Tunçboyacıyan and a number of other albums.
In 2002, Tankian with a guitarist Tom Morello co-founded a non-profit political activist organization called “Axis of Justice”. In August, 2011, he was awarded the Armenian Prime Minister’s Medal for the contributions aimed at recognizing the Armenian Genocide by world community and the advancement of Armenian-style music limited not only with Armenian borders.
He is widely considered and ranked as one of the greatest vocalists in history of metal rock with praise to his unusual and original interpretation as well as wide vocal range. Currently, Serj is listed as one of the Top 100 Heavy Metal Vocalists by Hit Parader.
Famous Armenian people 10) ARTO TUNÇBOYACIYAN
Arto is an American musician of Armenian descent who was born on 4th of August, 1957 in Istanbul and has won Grammy.
Being famous for working in avant-garde folk music sphere as a singer and multi-instrumentalist, Arto appeared with more than 200 records not only in Europe but also in the United States. He has worked with numerous jazz legends such as Chet Baker, Marc Johnson, Al Di Meola and many others..
Arto has established his own group called the “Armenian Navy Band” also known both in Armenia and abroad. He has also worked with Turkish singer, Sezen Aksu and the Greek singer, Eleftheria Arvanitaki.
On February 13, 2011, he won a Grammy award in Los Angeles for participation in records of Miho – Journey to the Mountain album.
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