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  • Mosesian Center For the Art 321 Arsenal Street Watertown, MA, 02472 United States (map)

2018 Arlington International Film Festival Kick-Off

‘An Homage to the Armenian Community in the Greater Boston Area’



Crows of the Desert – A Hero’s Journey through the Armenian Genocide (62 min)

Marta Houske, Award-winning Writer/Director/Producer | USA | Doc

Executive Producer, Paul G. Turpanjian

Music, John Massari


SUNDAY, October 7, 4:30 PM

Mosesian Center for the Arts | 321 Arsenal Street | Watertown




Q&A following the screening with Levon Parian, re-nowned photographic artist and grand-son of the subject Levon Yotnakhparian. Parian’s work will be on exhibit in the lobby of the Mosesian Center.


The Arlington International Film Festival (AIFF) is proud to announce their first-time partnership with the Mosesian Center for the Arts to present this award-winning film in commemoration of the Armenian Genocide and an homage to our Armenian community. This event, the 2018 AIFF Kick-Off, will roll out the red carpet for the 8th annual film festival November 1 – 4 at Arlington’s Capitol Theatre.

CROWS OF THE DESERT – A HERO’S JOURNEY THROUGH THE ARMENIAN GENOCIDE is a documentary based on the memoirs of Levon Yotnakhparian. The film recounts the incredible true story of one man’s desperate struggle to not only stay alive but to help save his people from near extinction in the 20th Century’s first genocide.

World War I was raging in the Middle East, as the British fought side by side with the Arabs against the Ottoman Empire. In the midst of the chaos, Levon would lead a small expeditionary group on a daring mission to rescue the scattered, destitute survivors of the Armenian Genocide. Along the way, they would risk their lives countless times, endure unimaginable hardships, and cross paths with some of the 20th century’s most legendary figures – like Prince Faisal and Lawrence of Arabia.

Extraordinarily rare film footage and photographs, as well as recently rediscovered documents, have been gathered from archives around the world to reveal a harrowing journey that is at once heart-wrenching and inspirational.

Reception and Q&A with Levon Parian following the screening


Tickets $15 at the door or online:


“The Armenian genocide was the ruthless slaughter of millions of Armenians by the Turks of the Ottoman Empire. In 1915, during World War I, leaders of the Turkish government set in motion a plan to expel and massacre Armenians. By the early 1920s, when the massacres and deportations finally ended, between 600,000 and 1.5 million Armenians were dead, with many more forcibly removed from the country.”


Levon Parian has been referred to as a philosopher and poet of the camera, a renowned photographer whose work encompasses the recognition of the Armenian Genocide. His experimental style pushes the boundaries of photographic self-expression and has been collected by private individuals as well as museums, and universities. He was honored with his artistic colleagues by Foreign Policy Magazine as being “among the 100 leading global thinkers of 2015.” The award was for “preserving the history of a genocide” through the innovative, larger-than-life public installation “iwitness,” showcasing portraits of Armenian genocide survivors created in commemoration of the 100th anniversary. The installation was the first of its kind in Los Angeles’ landmark Grand Park and led to the first permanent memorial in the city of Los Angeles to the Genocide of 1915. Parian has taken his grandfather’s memoirs, editing and translating his memories to give us this first-hand account of the genocide.


This is a 2015 installation in the county park of Los Angeles to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide :


About the Mosesian Center for the Arts

Located just six miles from Downtown Boston, the Mosesian Center for the Arts (formerly the Arsenal Center for the Arts) is a vibrant multi-disciplinary community arts venue located in Watertown, Massachusetts. This 30,000 sq. ft. former US Army arsenal is home to the 380-seat Main Stage Theater, a 100-seat Black Box theater, Exhibition Galleries, 2 Rehearsal Halls, Education Classrooms, and Resident Artist Studios. Offerings include visual and performing arts productions, classes, and workshops for all ages, literary/art discussions, and world-class theatrical and musical performances. The Center is home to the award-winning Watertown Children’s Theatre as well as New Repertory Theatre, Professional Theatre Company in residence.

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Levon Parian, writer; Roberta Miller, Executive director of the Mosesian Center for the Arts and April Ranck, Executive Director of AIFF

Levon Parian, writer; Roberta Miller, Executive director of the Mosesian Center for the Arts and April Ranck, Executive Director of AIFF

Earlier Event: September 28
Movie Night