Ohan Durian or Duryan was a well-known Armenian conductor and composer. Ohan Durian was born Hanna Khatchadurian in Jerusalem. From 1939 to 1945 Durian studied composition, conducting and organ at the Jerusalem Conservatory. Durian completed his education in Europe under the tutelage of Hermann Scherchen, Roger Désormière and Jean Martinon.
After graduating, Durian toured Europe, performing with several orchestras, and worked as a music teacher at Birzeit University between 1944 and 1946. In 1957 Durian settled in Armenia at the invitation of Catholicos Vazgen I, and in 1959-65 and 1972-1974 he was the conductor of the Armenian Philharmonic Orchestra.
Due to Soviet restrictions on artistic expression, Durian left Armenia for Europe, and from 1963-1968 he served as Music Director of the Leipzig Opera and was Guest Conductor of the Gewandhaus Orchestra. He also worked with other orchestras including the Avignon and Cape Town orchestras. From 1971 to 1972 Durian was the conductor of Yerevan State Opera and Ballet Theater and finally left Soviet Armenia in 1975.
In the early 1990's Armenia gained independence, and in 1991 Dourian returned to serve as the Artistic Director and Principal Conductor of the Ohan Durian Radio & TV Symphony Orchestra, which he founded, and as the Principal Conductor and Artistic Director of the Yerevan Opera Theatre. Durian was forced into retirement in Armenia, but from 2002-2006 he directed the Moscow Symphonic Orchestra at the Stas Namin Center.
Durian invented a musical system which he called Universalism and composed a number of songs and works for orchestra. Durian was awarded the title of People’s Artist of the Armenian Soviet Socialist Republic (1967) and the State Award of the ASSR.