Georgia – The Land of Unique People and Songs


Anzor Erkomaishvili (Author) – Art Director of Rustavi, State Academic Ensemble of Georgian Folk Song and Dance, Georgia

BISAC: HIS032000
DOI: 10.52305/ACHF6696

The author of this book, Anzor Erkomaishvili, is one of the most well known, recognized individuals in Georgia: a singer and choirmaster; a composer and performer; one who seeks out and publishes unique recordings scattered in the archives of various countries; the founder of the world famous Rustavi Ensemble; and a steadfast director for half a century…

This ensemble has held up to 6,000 concerts in 80 countries and has recorded more than 900 folk songs and released them on CD. These tour impressions have not been depicted in any of Anzor Erkomaishvili’s books. This ensemble receives ovations in world famous concert halls. Volumes of books are filled with the impressions of audience members enraptured by what they have heard. “The talent and expertise revealed by the singers, dancers, and instrumentalists of the Rustavi Ensemble evoke delight,” the New York Times wrote (April 7, 1991) following a concert at the Beacon Theater on Broadway. It is possible to say that these writings by Anzor Erkomaishvili can be considered his “selected work.”

The book consists of eight chapters. The first chapter is titled “At the Origins”. Here the author tells us about his ancestors and the search for Georgian recordings scattered about in foreign archives. The second chapter is “On Tour.” Here two countries are singled out from a gigantic tour map: France and the United States of America. “Unforgettable Encounters” is the third chapter. This chapter describes meetings with intriguing people. The fourth chapter is “A Man’s Fate”. Here you will read some essays permeated with special artistic expressions and emotions. “Mysterious Voices” is the fifth chapter. Here the reader will get acquainted with some impressionable portraits of unique performers of Georgian folk singing. The sixth chapter is “Precious Silhouettes”. Some interesting essays introduce readers to distinguished Georgian composers and opera singers. “To Save Singing” is the title of the seventh chapter. The author’s credo is disclosed in this chapter: “If we want to save folk singing, we must teach it to children and make them fall in love with it.” The way this credo became embodied within the creation of the Martve Children’s Ensemble and its great success is discussed. The last chapter is titled “Reflections.” Here are some thoughts the richly creative biographer has jotted down at various times. These are statements imbued with a humility characteristic of Erkomaishvili and expressed with the excellence and laconic forms that Jorje Luis Borges demanded from this genre.

Table of Contents


Chapter 1. At the Origins

Chapter 2. On Tour

Chapter 3. Unforgettable Encounters

Chapter 4. A Man’s Fate

Chapter 5. Mysterious Voices

Chapter 6. Precious Silhouettes

Chapter 7. To Save Singing

Chapter 8. Reflections


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