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Aurora's Sunrise

Saturday, December 9, 2023, 7:30 p.m., Dryden Theatre

(Inna Sahakyan, Armenia/Germany/Lithuania 2022, 96 min., DCP)

In 1915, 14-year-old Arshaluys Mardiganian was an Armenian living in Turkey, part of a large family. When the Ottoman Empire began their systematic genocide of the Armenian people, she was forced to march across the Syrian Desert and her family was torn apart. Sold into slavery, Arshaluys was able to escape and arrived in the United States after two long years. Activists sympathetic to the cause of the Armenians told her story and created a film about her life, starring Arshaluys herself, which was believed to be lost. Recently, scenes from this film, Auction of Souls, have been discovered and this documentary uses those scenes, as well as interview footage from the 1970s and animation to tell her story, from Armenia to the United States, from Arshaluys to Aurora.