Armenian National Academic Theatre of Opera and Ballet after Alexander Spendiaryan

81st season

back Aram Khachaturyan: The “Gayane” ballet

The “Gayane” ballet is one of the masterpieces of well-known composer Aram Khachaturyan. It is the first Armenian national ballet with 4 acts. The Libretto is being K. Derjavin. The work was first called “Happiness”, and was later changed to “Gayane”. The first play took place on December 9 of 1942 in Perm, with the participation of the Opera and Ballet theatre named after Kirov from Leningrad. Gayane was re-directed in 1952. Currently “Gayane” holds a permanent place in the playlist of the Opera and Ballet National Academic Theatre named after A. Spendiaryan.

Aram Khachaturian



  • Music by Aram Khachaturian
  • Libretto by Vilen Galstyan
  • Musical Director and Principal Conductor: Karen Durgaryan
  • Choreographer: Vilen Galstyan
  • Set Designer: Minas Avetisyan
  • Costume Designer: Roubina Hovhannisyan
  • Performance running time: 2 hours 20 minutes
  • There will be two intervals


Act I

In an Armenian village people are resting after a hard day’s work. Compared with the other girls, Gayaneh stands out with her beauty and charm. In her spare time she loves to dance. Gayaneh is the embodiment of Armenia, its vivid colours and unique national hues. Armen, who is in love with Gayaneh, cannot draw his eyes away from the young woman.

Act II

Giko, who is aware of Gayaneh and Armen’s love, nevertheless tries to win the girl’s heart. His unrequited love encourages him to play dirty and cruel tricks. Giko is a courageous and decisive fellow who will see no obstacles in his path. But here he faces defeat. This annoys Giko. His heart is filled with malice and despair. He resolves to avenge himself.


With the help of his friends, Giko abducts Gayaneh. The entire village hears of what has happened with lightning speed. The villagers are shocked and angry. Led by Armen, they discover the kidnappers. Giko is unable to bear the villagers’ wroth. He resolves to flee. Gayaneh and Armen are happy. Love has triumphed and they are free to marry. All their fellow villagers sing and dance at the wedding. This part of the ballet includes several folk dances, among them the famous Sabre Dance.