Lord Byron – 225 years
24 January, 2013
Lord Byron – 225 years
Last Tuesday afternoon, Tbilisi State University hosted the gala, dedicated to Lord Byron’s 225th anniversary, organized by Professor Innes Merabishvili – the founder of Byron School of Tbiisi and President of the Byron Society of Georgia, the literary scholar and the poetic translator. The event was introduced by Alexander Kvitashvili, Rector of the University. He greeted their Excellencies the ambassadors of Great Britan, Italy and Greece, who were honorably present among the spectators. It all started with demonstrating the 33-minute
documentary, describing the life and activity of Innes Merabishvii and her role in introducing Byron in Georgia. The film was preceded by the comments of the famous Georgian director Merab Kokochashvili. The 600-seat hall of the University Theater was packed full with lovers of poetry and adherents to Lord Byron. It was more than clear that the Georgian public had felt certain intellectual hunger for presentations of that kind. Inness herself lead that fascinating event on the stage, reading excerpts from Byron’s works together with the British Ambassador and one of her colleagues in her own translation. The main number of the soiree was the presentation of the book, the bilingual — English and Georgian — fresh edition of Byron’s poetry, translated and commented by Merabishvili with her copious and extremely interesting essay, titled Byron & Georgia’. Poetic dedications to Byron by Zviad Gamsakhurdia, Ioseb Noneshvili and Innes Merabishvili sounded impressively from the stage. The musical numbers were performed by the graduates of Byron School of Tbilisi. At the piano were sisters Tamuna and Natia Beraia, Tata Licheli, Salome Zhordania, david Khrikuli, Gvantsa Putkaradze, Violin – Ia Davitashvili, narrator and impersonator of Byron Nodar Piralishvili. The finale of the event was filled with the vocalist triumphalism, completing the concert with the famous Verdi piece from La Traviata ‘Brindisi’, presented by a group of the well-known young opera singers. Glasses of white wine went around on the stage and in the hall for the guests to join the singing, the audience accompanying the performers. The impression was truly grand. The happy, emotionally and intellectually satisfied audience continued to socialize during the post-event reception, held in the theater front hall taking memorable photos and excitedly sharing the impressions with each other.
The entire event was arranged and provided for by Professor Merabishvili with love and care, having made the evening for all of us absolutely outstanding. I doubt that anything like this had happened either in Great Britain itself or anywhere in the world that day.
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