Ara Dinkjian '80
I began playing music professionally at the age of five, so pursuing a career in music was never a question. I auditioned for three conservatories, and The Hartt School was by far the best. I was elated to be accepted.
I was not the typical conservatory student—I had very little experience with classical music. My focus was always on my cultural (Armenian) music, and my main instrument was the oud (an ancient fretless lute of Persian origin). Miraculously, Hartt created a special “contract major” degree in the oud just for me, allowing me to do independent study, and even take courses for credit at other local colleges. This was an extraordinary gesture on the part of a major University. “Coming home” for this performance in November, I have the opportunity to say thank you and show that UHart’s faith (and gamble) in me was justified.
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