Before the pandemic, Karine Sahakyan*, 34, had spent years suffering from her husband’s beatings and her mother-in-law’s abuse at their home in the Ararat region of Armenia. The coronavirus lockdown forced her to find the courage to save herself and her children.
Finding freedom during lockdown
The Paronyan Musical Comedy Theater and the Sos Sargsyan National State Theater were ordered to shut down in March due to the Covid-19 pandemic and lockdown in Armenia. Faced with an uncertain future, the theaters came up with innovative ways to keep their audiences engaged from home: The Paronyan Musical Comedy Theater started posting performances online, including videos at home with the help of the actors, and the Sos Sargsyan National State Theater filmed videos in a theatrical way and streamed them on YouTube and Facebook.
Theater during lockdown
The recent war in Nagorno-Karabakh forced Qnarik Babayan, 62, to move to Armenia, where she must rebuild her life from zero.
Two Russian journalists moved to Armenia following the Russian invasion of Ukraine as an act of protest against the Russian attack and the government’s policy of media censorship. The Russian invasion of Ukraine changed the fate of thousands of Russians, including journalists Vlad Gagin, 29, and Andrey Serafimov, 24. In protest to the invasion, the two fled to Armenia in search of peace and the freedom to work. Freedom of speech and media ethics are core values for journalists–and often difficult to find in Russia. In Armenia, working in different media, Vlad and Andrey have discovered a new purpose: competing with Russian propaganda.