Today there are ensembles in Georgia that strive to preserve and develop folk traditions. One of such ensembles is ‘Rustavi’ – State Academic Ensemble of Georgian Folk Song and Dance.
The “Rustavi” was created in 1968. This brilliant collective leads fruitful artistic life – revives forgotten folk songs and dances, performs concerts and takes part in festivals, radio and TV programs and films. The “Rustavi” records folk songs to CDs, takes tours in various countries and presents Georgian folklore to the world.
“Rustavi”’s singers, dancers and folk instrumentalists skillfully merge in harmony during their concert program, painting a rich tapestry of folk culture.
During its existence the ensemble has successfully performed about 5000 concerts, travelled through about 80 countries (most of them several times). The great concert halls of various cities of the world meet with ovations the performing art of the “Rustavi”. The press highly evaluates its concerts.
The founder and the Artistic Director of the Ensemble “Rustavi” is People’s Artist of Georgia, Shota Rustaveli State Prize Laureate Anzor Erkomaishvili. He is the representative of the seventh generation of the Erkomaishvilis’ musical dynasty. This surname has 300-year history, that’s why, he inherited from his predecessors rich performing traditions and the knowledge of Georgian folk songs.
Until recently, the Choirmaster and Director of the Ensemble was People’s Artist of Georgia and State Prize Laureate renowned Badri Toidze, – who is also a descendant of traditional singers.
Since 2016 the Director of the Ensemble “Rustavi” is Amiran Toidze, a young talented head distinguished for management skills and innovative approaches meeting high up-to-date demands.
The leader and the Chief Choreographer of ‘Rustavi’ is Pridon Sulaberidze – in the past a leading solo dancer of the ‘Georgian National Ballet’, directed by Iliko Sukhishvili and Nino Ramishvili, one of the best dancers of all times in Georgia. He puts his own signature under his tasteful and original arrangement of folk dances. Thanks to Pridon Sulaberidze, ‘Rustavi’ has mastered the rich and varied heritage of folk dance from all over Georgia and gained the best qualities of the academic ensemble.
‘Rustavi’s dances are accompanied by folk songs and instruments from Georgia’s various provinces. Sulaberidze and Erkomaishvili create harmonious spectacle with dances, songs, and folk instruments thus further enhancing regional peculiarities, which makes ‘Rustavi’ distinguished from other ensembles.
For the contribution in the development and popularization of Georgian culture ‘Rustavi’ has been granted various prizes and awards.
Today ‘Rustavi’ is in the heyday of fame. It successfully performs concerts both in Georgia and abroad.
The whole group of the Ensemble consists of 61 members.