Hayk Davtyan: "There are melodies that I can play with my eyes closed"

Айк Давтян

About me

My name is Hayk Davtyan, I am 17 years old. I work as a bartender at a Cafe #2* and in my spare time I play the piano for our customers. I was born and raised in Dilijan, graduated from high school, after which I entered Dilijan State College as a programmer, now I am in my second year. There came a stage in my life when I felt that I had to take care of my own needs and fulfill my goals. Since childhood, my goal has been to buy a piano and a laptop with which I could develop my musical skills. I really wanted to find a part-time job in a cool place and I was interested in Cafe #2*. Therefore, in 2021, my friend and I started working there.

*Cafe #2 is a social enterprise where children can get their first work experience and pocket money.

The path in Music: how it all started

Since childhood, I have had a great love for music, I always wanted to play some kind of musical instrument. When my parents bought a piano for my younger sister, who is studying at a music school, I became interested in the piano. That's how my journey of learning this keyboard musical instrument began: at home, on my sister's piano. At first, I tried to play the simplest melodies and felt that I was doing well and there was no need to study specifically, and I did not feel the desire to get an education in this field. However, there was a musician who helped me on my way and showed me different directions.

"I train my hearing every day"

In fact, the main secret of success is to take small steps in this direction every day. When you see the result of your systematic work, it is very motivating. Personally, it was like this: I started with the most primitive melodies and there was a desire to go further, to learn to play more complex compositions. Sometimes learning one composition could take a whole month – with all its chords, rhythms. Now, naturally, it takes me less time. Unfortunately, I don't know musical notation, but that doesn't stop me from playing – I know chords and tones. There are melodies that I can play with my eyes closed.

I train my hearing every day. When I hear a melody, I can quickly find its tone and play it. A complex piece will take about a week. But it wasn't always like that, I've acquired this skill over the last 2 years. The piano is a complex instrument, it has 12 tones, of which I know only 7 of the most common, present in almost all melodies. Well, of course, sometimes you have to learn new ones to play a song.

About work and future plans

At the moment, I can't say that music occupies the main place in my life, it's a hobby, not a stable job. As I have already noted, my goal was to purchase a laptop and a keyboard – the tools I need to write music, which is what I want to do in the future. Of course, I would like to have even more serious equipment and my own music studio in the future. So music will haunt mench all my life, I will never leave it. I even have a goal to master a new musical instrument – the violin, which I adore.  If I choose what I like more – to close myself in the studio and write works or perform in front of an audience – I will choose the latter. The number of listeners is not so important to me, even if there are only 5 people. The main thing is that they love music, it's important for me to get feedback and energy from them.

I really like working as a bartender, it's still about creativity. I really love the smell of coffee, tea… In general, I seem rather strange to other people: I can retire with coffee in nature and enjoy the atmosphere of Dilijan for hours. For me, this is one of the sources of inspiration for creative activity. It happens that I urgently need to take my mind off work, I ask someone to keep an eye on the bar and go play the piano. This happens consistently 2-3 times a week.

We have a regular visitor, for whom Cafe #2 has become a second home. He works here as a programmer and also knows how to play. When I sit down at the instrument, he also performs some kind of composition after me.

Top favorite songs

Most of all, my heart lies with the classics, but there are also modern songs in my repertoire. If we talk about the most beloved, then this is "Experience" by Ludovico Einaudi. I also really love "Waltz" by Eugene Doga and "River Flows in You" by South Korean musician Yiruma. Of the Armenian ones, I have always loved the composer Arno Babajanian, Tigran Mansurian and Hayko, even though he is a modern musician. I've learned songs from their repertoire too, so you can hear them in my performances.

Attitude to the modern music industry

Unfortunately, the art component in the modern music industry has almost disappeared: there are more remixes and bass, and I don't really like it. The more humanity develops, the less space is given to art. Of course, it's not about everyone, I'm talking about general trends. I'm for the natural, for the classics. That's why I'm drawn more to the old composers. Perhaps Dilijan, with its minor nature, also contributes to my musical preferences.

Come to the Cafe #2 get to know Hayk and listen to his play accompanied by delicious drinks and dishes.

Hayk Davtyan, the bartender at Cafe #2.

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