LOS ANGELES —In a debut cultural event, Forest Lawn—Hollywood Hills’s Armenian Movie Night will celebrate and revive Armenian history and culture as well as pay tribute to Genocide Awareness Month. The FREE, one-night-only event includes the exclusive premiere of the documentary April War Heroes, followed by a Q&A between the film’s director, Tsvetana Paskaleva, who is one of the most celebrated Armenian filmmakers, and Hovsep “Joe” Hajibekyan of Forest Lawn—Hollywood Hills. After the screening, Armenian community partners will present artifacts, art, and embroidery that represent historic Armenian regions and recover and reintroduce aspects of Armenian culture that were largely eradicated during the Armenian Genocide of 1915. The event also includes Armenian music performances by Ara Dabanjian from Element Band and Friends and traditional Armenian pastries from local Armenian bakeries.

The premiere screening of Tsvetana Paskaleva’s documentary April War Heroes commemorates the third anniversary of the April War or the Four-Day War, which took place over four days in April 2016 and resulted in the death of nearly 100 Armenian soldiers and civilians. The 30-minute film documents the heroic stories of Armenian soldiers who gave their lives during the intense fighting of this war, which began when Azerbaijan attacked the Republic of Nagorno-Karabakh and ended when the outnumbered Armenian servicemen pushed back the unexpected and overwhelming enemy attack within days. The screening and conversation with Paskaleva, who has been writing, directing, and filming for over 25 years, celebrate the power of Armenian film as a tool for remembering history.

“So much of Armenia’s rich history and beautiful culture was lost during the Genocide,” says Joe Hajibekyan. “But with the depth of culture incorporated into Forest Lawn’s Armenian Movie Night, with film, food, artistry, music, and community, we continue to revive and celebrate this legacy.”

“At Forest Lawn, we know how meaningful it is to honor and remember the culture that was important to those who have passed,” says Rodolfo Saenz, Forest Lawn’s Senior Vice President, Marketing. “With this event, we keep traditions alive while also inviting the community to learn about important aspects of Armenian culture.”

Armenian Movie Night takes place on Sunday, April 7, 2019, from 2:30–6:00 PM, inside the Hall of Liberty at Forest Lawn—Hollywood Hills, 6300 Forest Lawn Drive, Los Angeles, CA 90068. Doors open for a pre-show reception at 2:00 PM. Seating is available on a first come, first served basis and will begin at 2:30 PM. Admission and parking are FREE. Visit www.forestlawn.com for more information.

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