Nora Ipekian Azadian passed away in her sleep on April 29. She was born in Alexandria, Egypt into a family of prominent artists and intellectuals. Her paternal side included theatrical figures Gaspar Ipekian and Armen Armenian. Her mother Chake Ipekian was an actress and pianist, and the daughter of revolutionary statesman and intellectual Mihran Damadian. She was extremely proud of her grandfather, an Armenian national hero.
Nora was educated in Cairo’s French Lyce’e and was trained as an artist at Ashod Zorian’s art studio and received her diploma from ABC Art School in Paris, France. She taught art at French Lyce’e and Kaloustian School in Cairo. Her students won prizes at UNESCO’s student art competitions in Warsaw, Poland and Shankar, India. Among other students, Chant Avedisian, who also studied art at Nora’s private studio rose to international fame.
Nora also taught Armenian history through art at AGBU Alex and Marie Manoogian School in Southfield, Michigan.
She served as president of Tekeyan Cultural Association, Detroit Chapter where she was one of the pioneers in promoting “TCA’s Sponsor a Teacher Program” to help underpaid teachers in Armenia. Nora was a quintessential artist as a painter, actress and pianist. She acted in lead roles in Armenian and French classical plays by Corneil, Racine, Moliere. She was the most accomplished interpreter of Vahan Tekeyan’s poetry, trained by the poet, himself.
She gave art shows in Egypt, Armenia, and the United States, presenting her impressionistic watercolors and oils. Nora also served as a member of the Fine Arts Committee at St. John Armenian Church in Southfield.
As a pianist, her favorite composers were Chopin, Beethoven and Bach.
Her homes in Cairo, Boston and Detroit also served as art salons, where she entertained artists, opera singers and writers.
Nora is survived by her husband Edmond Y. Azadian and son Gerald Papasian.
Visitation Tuesday, May 4, 2021 from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. with a 7:00 p.m. Dan Gark Service at St. John Armenian Church.
In state Wednesday, May 5, 2021 at 10:00 a.m. until her 11:00 a.m. Funeral Service.
In lieu of flower donations are designated to: Tekeyan Cultural Association, “Sponsor a Teacher Program” 755 Mt. Auburn St., Watertown, MA 02472.
Link for online donations: https://givebutter.com/tekeyan-cultural-association-inc