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Petros Shoujounian: Biography

Petros Shoujounian
1957 -
Region: Québec

Petros Shoujounian

Petros Shoujounian was born in Gumri (formerly Leninakan), Armenia in 1957. He started music lessons on the violin, first in the Komitas School of Music, and then in the Gara-Mourza College of Music. At the age of eleven, he had already composed several works for his instument, including the Suite for Solo Violin, which was premiered in 1975.

The following year, he settled in Montreal, Quebec, where he continued his musical studies at the Quebec Conservatory of Music, in the Analysis and Composition class of Gilles Tremblay. Horovele, for solo clarinet, Arax, for string quartet, Mashtotz for two pianos, are three works the composer wrote during his conservatoire years which ended with a Master’s Degree in composition in 1982. Since then, Petros Shoujounian has written for chorus and large orchestra, string orchestra, quartets, trios, solo instruments and voice.

The Oratorio “Sourp Khatch” (Holy Cross) commemorates 17 centuries of Armenian Christianity. Significant historical events of each century are represented by each of the seventeen movements beginning with the conversion of our nation to Christianity in 301 A.D. This is a sophisticated and complex 21st century work written for orchestra, choir and three soloists. It is a very intense composition that depicts the struggle, suffering, victories and failures of a nation but ends with a renewed hope in the future. The concert took place in Toronto 21 of May 2001 by Sinfonia of Toronto The Elmer Isler Singers and 3 Solo singers.

For the same occasion Petros Shoujounian orchestrated and arranged Armenian spiritual music for chamber orchestra choro and soprano solo . CBC produce a CD (JOYOUS LIGHT) with Isabele Bayraktaryian, conducted by Raffi Armenian.

Petros Shoujounian


PROCAN, Canadian League of Composers


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