He is an Armenian conductor, pedagogue and founder of the Opera class of the Conservatory. He is a People's Artist of RA (1976). In 1950 he has graduated from Yerevan Komitas Conservatory with Constandin Sarajian. A.Katanian was a conductor of the Radio Symphonic Orchestra in Sverdlovsk. Since 1958 he was a conductor of Yerevan A.Spendiarian Opera and Ballet Academic Theater, from 1964 to 1970 and from 1974 to 1982 he was a Principal Conductor.
He staged I. Stravinski's Opera-Oratorio "King Edip" (1963), L. Bernstine's Musical Drama "Westside Story" (1966), Vincenzo Bellini's Opera "Norma" (1975), Jan Carlo Menotti's Opera "Consul", as well as many operas and ballets of modern Armenian composers, among them are Aram Khachaturian's "Spartacus" (1961), Ed. Hovhannisian's " Eternal Idol" (1966), Grigor Yeghiazarian's "The Lake of Dreams" (1968), Alexander Harutyunian's "Sayat Nova" (1969).