*** 2006 Winner ***
"Best Classical Voice/Opera Solo Album of the Year"
- Just Plain Folks Music Awards
*** 2005 Nominee ***
"Best Classical Vocal Album"
- Armenian Music Awards
A heartwarming and tender collection of Armenian lullabies and night songs, "A Mother's Love" includes traditional folk songs as well as original compositions.
As night falls, moonlight shimmers upon a world where a mother sings an "oror" (lullaby) for her little one. Like music, the language of a mother's love is universal, and the sentimental themes of this CD speak to the hopes and dreams of families everywhere. Featuring songs written by her parents Annig Zindarsian and Earl Zindars, the CD offers an interesting blend of styles with crossover appeal into the genres of folk, jazz, and classical music. The CD also features several traditional Armenian melodies, as well as some re-discovered treasures of Armenian music. A special treat is a recording of Helene singing an Armenian "sharagan" (church hymn) when she was only 3 years old.
A native San Franciscan born into a very musical family, Helene's earliest memories include falling asleep each night to either the sounds of her father composing at the piano, or her mother singing beautiful Armenian lullabies. By the time Helene was five years old, she was hooked, and already a regular in the church choir. Her background includes thirteen years of formal training at the San Francisco Ballet School, studies at the American Conservatory Theatre, and a degree in Dramatic Art from U.C. Berkeley.
An impromptu performance in an Italian palazzo led to her professional debut in San Francisco where she was hand-picked by the San Francisco Ballet Company to be the soprano soloist in a world premier production set to Mahler's "Des Knaben Wunderhorn". The following two years were spent touring Europe where she settled for a time in Switzerland, singing soprano lead in a vocal quartet. After receiving an invitation to sing Strauss's "Four Last Songs" in Chicago, she was enticed to return to the United States, where she now maintains an active concert schedule.
Helene performs regularly throughout the Bay Area as a professional member of several distinguished ensembles including Philharmonia Baroque, American Bach Soloists, the San Francisco Symphony Chorus, San Francisco Opera Chorus, AVE Artists’ Vocal Ensemble, the Sanford Dole Ensemble, San Francisco Renaissance Voices, the Throckmorton Chamber Players, and the Carmel Bach Festival.
Helene is often featured as a soloist with the Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra, which was recently hailed as Musical America’s “Ensemble of the Year”. Her solo appearances there include Campra’s "Requiem", Purcell’s "Birthday Ode to Queen Mary", Rameau’s "Grand Motet", and most recently Handel’s "Samson" and Bach’s "Christmas Oratorio", all with maestro Nicholas McGegan conducting.
Recent engagements include the soprano soloist in Rosenmüller's "Magnificat" with Konrad Junghänel and the Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra, and a return to the Chicago area to perform Berlioz’s "Les nuits d’été" with members of the Chicago Symphony and the Park Ridge Civic Orchestra. Closer to home, she was recently featured as the soprano soloist in Vaughan Williams's "Dona Nobis Pacem" with the Marin Symphony.