Azad-Hye, Dubai, 7 March 2006: In its 6th December 2001 issue, ?The Moscow Times? Russian leading English-language newspaper?s reporter Elvan Levent describes the new phenomenon of the Russian pop music with the following words: ?After 16 years of performing at clubs and restaurants in
In the following year (2002),Avraam Russo won a Russian national premium
award called ?Pesnya Goda? (the song of the year) for his famous hit ?Daleko Daleko? (Far away in Russian), originally taken from the Egyptian Arab famous singer Amr Diab?s song ?Tamalli Ma?ak? (2000).
What is the story behind Avraam Russo? Is he really of Turkish descent?
Quite the contrary. Russo?s real name is Apraham Ipjian (nicknamed
Born in 1969 in
As he discovered his singing talent, he was soon involved in several amateur bands, making part-time appearances in family style outdoor restaurants (such as Ramaya, Aleppo Family Swimming Pool, Somar, Ouroubeh, etc.) and in hotels (Al Amir) in Aleppo.
In 1993 he moves to
During one of his visits to Cyprus a Russian Jewish tycoon Telman Ismailov (now Vice President of the Euro-Asian Jewish Congress and owner of huge retail enterprises in Moscow and entertainment outlets such as Prague Restaurant), a well connected person with Russian politicians (including the Mayor of Moscow), attends one of his multi-lingual performances and upon noticing his talent, he immediately invites him to work in one of his prestigious outlets in Russia.
Ismailov, originally from
After hesitating for one year, Apig eventually takes his advice. At that time he was back in
There was always a kind of mystery about his origin. People made different speculations, judging on his knowledge of several languages. He himself had not explicitly referred to his ethnic background, maybe due to an informal agreement he made with his manager before receiving wide recognition. After all Russian fans might be fascinated with his songs and style and would not be interested to know about his origin. Armenians of Aleppo though insist in branding him as their fellow compatriot.