Araïk Bartikian was born in 1962. His grandfather, Ousta Haïrik, was a master musician from the Sevan area, an accomplished player on the duduk, the zurna, the sering and the clarinet. His father, Serioja, held the drone when his grandfather played. All in all, then, Araïk grew up in a musical atmosphere where the sound of wind instruments was omnipresent. His parents encouraged him to take accordion lessons (an uncle on his father's side was an accordionist), but his preference lay elsewhere, and at the age of twelve, he taught himself to play the shevi (recorder); his mother then encouraged him to try the duduk. At the age of sixteen his grandfather took him to see the grand master Djivan Gasparian, who lived in the same district as them. "You play well", he said, "but you'll have to learn the basics all over again". In the beginning, in order to make the young man's lips more supple, he held the instrument whilst Araïk blew into it. This set the pattern for a long apprenticeship that was to continue over the years, since Araïk remained with this one teacher. In 1982, he won a place in the Komitas Conservatory in Erevan whose principal was Ghazaros Sarian, with Khatchadour Avedissian head of the department for traditional instruments. Araïk received a complete classical training there (harmony, counterpoint, music for ensemble) and in 1987 won his 'grand prix' with his performance of a piece by Komitas for harp and duduk. This was the time when the Soviet Union was breaking up, as were all the State ensembles which had produced whole generations of traditional musicians. Araïk found himself at the crossroads of the political upheavals going on in his homeland; music school was only just behind him, his solid musical training was that of the Soviet school, and he'd never played traditional music in a large group. But these were strong contributory factors in the forging of his musical personality, putting him amongst the avant-garde of the new generation of instrumentalists. The first ensemble he played with during the 90's was the group Piunik, led and conducted by cellist, composer and arranger Krikor Arakelian, who campaigned to rediscover the rich heritage of traditional music. For the Kiev Festival in 1991, Avet Terterian chose him to play his Symphony No. 3 for orchestra, duduk and zurna, first performed with Djivan Gasparian in 1975. Since then, Araïk has performed the work several times at concerts or for recordings, and has also worked with other contemporary composers. He has played under the baton of Mourad Annamamedov, John Carewe, Hans Leenders, Diego Masson, Pierre Dominique Ponnelle, Pascal Rophé, Alexander Slatkowski, Volodimir Sirenko, Edouard Topdjian, Loris Tjeknavorian... Since 2006 and the issue of his solo record called Monodiques, Araïk come frequently in France. During those stays, he has met numerous musicians. These meetings have been the departure point of the creation of groups like the duet with the female singer Sevan Manoukian or the trio with Keyvan Chemirani (zarb) and Jean-Marc Foltz (clarinet). In 2007, Araïk has taken part, in the Abbaye de Royaumont (near Paris), to the creation of « Le banquet polyphonique géorgiens », with the vocal polyphonic ensemble Antchiskhati, from Georgia. This very peculiar show (the musicians play all along the banquet, and also eat together with the audience) has been presented in several places in France during this year.