Sydney premiere screening of Children of a Genocide attracts a sell-out audience


SYDNEY: The first ever Australian-produced film on the Armenian Genocide attracted a wide audience to a packed out premiere screening of Shahane Bekarian’s “Children of a Genocide” at Event Cinemas Top Ryde on July 31.

The film, which was produced in association with the Armenian National Committee of Australia (ANC Australia), is a 62-minute documentary which addressed the hardships endured by Armenian children at the time of the Armenian Genocide through the use of archived interviews of 40 survivors who recorded their testimonies in the 1980s in Australia.

Inspired by his grandfather’s story, Bekarian identifies and interviews the descendants of the genocide survivors in the film, and addresses their experiences in retaining the Armenian culture, while confronting assimilation in Australia.

The event began with a short statement from Bekarian himself prior to the screening, followed by a Q&A session with the filmmaker and some of his cast and crew after the documentary had been viewed by the audience. The evening’s proceedings then concluded after a closing statement was made by Executive Administrator, Arin Markarian, on behalf of ANC Australia, thanking the audience for attending the premiere screening.

“Lets continue to pass on the stories from generation to generation and help people understand, that although the past is the past, this is a part of us. This is who we are. These stories have helped shape what we as a people continue to struggle for”, said Markarian in his statement.

When commenting about the event, Markarian said: “All the hard work and dedication towards this film has finally paid off with the premiere screening of “Children of a Genocide”. Although the survivors who were interviewed in the film are no longer with us, we know they would have been proud of all involved in having their stories told.”

He added: “With the production of this film, a new resource becomes available to academics and decision makers, and helps us continue to promote this year’s significant focus on Australia’s links to the Armenian Genocide.”

Bekarian said: “It was humbling to finally share my film and perspectives on our culture with the community and wider audience. My thoughts throughout the film were of my late grandfather Boghos Tavrayan. I wish he could have been there to watch it.”

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