||This biography of a living person needs additional citations for verification. (October 2012) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)|
Manookian was born in Salt Lake City, Utah, and began his musical training at age four. At age 12 Manookian wrote a piano concerto, by 14 he had won his first piano competition and by age 15 had written a violin concerto and a symphony. At age 16, his early flute concerto was premiered with him as conductor.