Gulakian, Armen

Gulakian, Armen Karapetovich


Born Oct. 20 (Nov. 1), 1899, in Tbilisi; died Sept. 22, 1960, in Yerevan. Soviet director, playwright, and theater figure. People’s Artist of the Armenian SSR (1940). Member of the CPSU from 1941.

Gulakian’s theater activity began in 1918 in Tbilisi. From 1921 to 1924 he studied at the Armenian Drama Studio in Moscow. In 1925 he became director of the Armenian Theater in Tbilisi; he was a director (1927) and chief director (1930–38 and 1944–53) of the G. Sundukian Armenian Theater (Yerevan). During 1938–45 and 1958–60 he was the chief director of the A. Spendiarov Theater of Opera and Ballet in Yerevan and in 1955–56, chief director of the K. S. Stanislavsky Yerevan Russian Theater. His best productions at the G. Sundukian Theater include Khatabala (by Sundukian, 1927), In the Ring (by Vagarshian, 1930), The Marriage of Figaro (by Beaumarchais, 1933), Napoleon Korkotian (by Demirchian, 1934), Shakhname (by Dzhanan, 1935); The Storm (by Ostrovskii, 1935), Othello (by Shakespeare, 1940), Masquerade (by Lermontov, 1949), These Our Stars (by Ter-Grigorian and Karagezian, 1950; State Prize of the USSR, 1950), and The Living Corpse (by Tolstoy, 1951). At the A. Spendiarov Theater of Opera and Ballet his productions included Anush and David Bek (by Tigranian, 1935 and 1951), The Huguenots (by Meyerbeer, 1943), Ivan Susanin (by Glinka, 1942), and Arshak II (by Chukhadzhian, 1945; State Prize of the USSR, 1946). He produced For the Sake of Honor (by Shirvanzade, 1955) at the K. S. Stanislavsky Yerevan Russian Theater.

Gulakian is the author of At Daybreak (1937), The Great Friendship (1939), Hidden Treasure (1940), Unforgettable Days and People (1957), and other plays. In 1944 he began teaching at the Yerevan Artistic Theatrical Institute (professor, 1947). Gulakian was a deputy to the second and third convocations of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR. He was awarded the Order of Lenin, two other orders, and medals.


Harut’iunian, B. Armen Guyakyan. Yerevan, 1964.