Born in Yerevan, Armenia, Karen Durgaryan has been for 15 years the Principal Conductor of the Armenian National State Opera and Ballet Theatre until 2015. Durgaryan graduated from the Yerevan State Conservatory in 1996 and has studied with Prof. Mousin at the Saint Petersburg Conservatory in 1997. In 1995 he was appointed an Associate Conductor of the Armenian State Philharmonic Orchestra and the following year has been the Music Director of “Britten and Armenia” International Music Festival in Yerevan.
Since 2000 Karen Durgaryan has conducted major performances of Lebanese diva Fairuz, the greatest singer of Arabic world at numerous festivals and concert halls around the world. The CD “Fairuz Live at the Beiteddine 2000” produced by Ziad Rahbani with the EMI got the highest international acclaim.
Karen Durgaryan regularly conducts the best opera houses in Russia: from 2008, he is regularly a guest of the Mikhailovsky Theatre in St. Petersburg and on tour. Since 2015 he is a regular guest conductor at the Novosibirsk State Opera and Ballet Theatre both at home and on tour conducting opera and ballet productions: most recent premiere has been Cinderella by Prokofiev. He has also appeared often at the Mariinsky Theatre, St. Petersburg, where he has conducted the new production of “Spartacus” Ballet. He was invited again for the White Nights Festival 2013, celebrating the opening of the new Mariinsky 2 and the 60th birthday of Maestro Valery Gergiev. Internationally, he has also conducted ballet productions at the Leipzig Opera, at the Opéra National de Lyon and in December 2016 made his debut at the Bayerisches Staatsoper conducting a new production of Spartak by Aram Khachaturian, which he also led with the Royal Ballet of Wallonia in January 2017.
His international symphonic activity has a special focus in Italy: he has conducted the Teatro Lirico, Cagliari, the Teatro Regio Torino, the Teatro Carlo Felice, Genova, the Teatro Verdi, Sassari in addition to concerts with the Orchestra di Padova e del Veneto and with the “Luigi Cherubini” Orchestra and the Toradze Piano Studio at the Ravenna Festival. He also appeared regularly with the Orchestra Sinfonica Siciliana in Palermo and most recently with the Orchestra “I Pomeriggi Musicali”, Milan. Conducting an all-Prokofiev program Karen Durgaryan made a successful debut with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra in November 2016 and in January 2017 has conducted for the first time the Brussels Philharmonic Orchestra, where he will return in January 2019. In February 2018 Karen Durgaryan made his first appearance with the Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra conducting two special ballet gala programs featuring the Armenian Ballet.
In December 2018 Durgaryan will conduct for the first time at Teatro di San Carlo, Napoli for a production of Nutcracker.
Karen Durgaryan holds the title of Honored Artist of Republic of Armenia and in 2010 was awarded with the highest medal of Armenia in field of art and culture.