Keep Smiling (Gaigimet) Embassy Screening 5 December 2012
As a 'taster' for the 3rd London BGS Georgian Film Festival 2013 and for the last screening of this year, BGS will show Rusudan Chkonia's successful 2012 debut feature Keep Smiling (Gaigimet) for members only. Having had much recognition at various festivals including Venice Days 2012 (a parallel programme to the Venice Festival) the film has been selected as the Georgian entry for the Academy Awards Foreign Language nomination.
Keep Smiling is a black comedy with dramatic events taking place during a beauty contest. There are 10 mothers, half of whom are from the poorest section of society, and between them have a large number of children. They are all after the main prize of an apartment and $25,000 USD. 91 minutes. Georgian/French/Luxemburg co-production.
Wednesday 5th December, Georgian Embassy, 4 Russell Gardens, London W14 8EZ, 7pm.
Epic Poetry East and West: Rustaveli & His Contemporaries 30 November 2012
As the final event of our celebration of 100 years of Rustaveli in English, David Gigauri and Anna Chelidze have organised the following event at the British Library, 96 Euston Road, London NW1 2DB, Friday 30th November, from 5.30pm to 9pm.
Epic Poetry East and West: Rustaveli & His Contemporaries
Welcome by Janet Zmroczek (Head of European Studies, BL) and HE Giorgi Badridze (Georgian Ambassador)
Paper 1 'The Epic Traditions in Medieval France and Spain' Dr Geoff West (Head Hispanic Collections, British Library)
Paper 2 'Shahnameh & Persian Epic Poetry' Prof Charles Melville (Professor of Persian History, University of Cambridge)
Paper 3 'Rustaveli the Poet and Medieval Georgia' Aka Morchiladze (Georgian writer and literary historian)
Followed by a discussion and reception with Georgian wine and songs from the Maspindzeli Choir
Robert Parsons Royal Asiatic Society 30 October 2012
An evening of talks, film and song to celebrate Rustaveli
British Georgian Society and the Royal Asiatic Society are delighted to announce an evening of talks, film and song on October 30th to mark 100 years since the publication of the first English Translation of the epic Georgian poem 'A Man in a Panther's Skin' by the 12th century poet Shota Rustaveli.
Our programme centres on song which still thrives today amongst Georgia's cultural traditions.
6.45pm - Welcome by RAS Director Alison Ohta.
7.00pm - Introduction to Georgian music by Tamta Turmanidze (Leader of UK based Georgian Choirs Maspindzeli and Tabuni)
7.15pm - Screening of the film 'Songs of Georgia' directed by Jason Osborn
8.00pm - Talk by Robert Parsons who narrated the film, will speak and reflect on contemporary Georgia
8.30pm - Questions followed by Georgian wine and snacks provided by Little Georgia restaurant and music by Maspindzeli Choir
The film 'Songs of Georgia' features some of the finest musicians in different regional communities in the Caucasus and explores a culture deeply rooted in the daily lives of the people. Despite an often harsh and precarious existence, a feast is nearly always on offer and a new generation performs the songs and dances of their ancestors. All the music for the film was recorded on location by the BBC World Routes team and narrated by Robert Parsons, who was amazed, when he first went to Georgia, that nearly every family he visited could sing traditional Georgian songs in complex harmonies.
We are very pleased that Robert will be with us for the evening and will speak after the film. He first went to Georgia in the 1980s and has since become one of the most respected and knowledgeable journalists to cover Georgia. He is currently international affairs editor at France24 TV and recently spent 18 months in Tbilisi as head of the independent Georgian channel Kanal PIK TV.
British Georgian Society AGM 27 November 2012
The 2012 AGM will take place on Tuesday 27th November at 6.30pm. The Georgian Embassy, 4 Russell Gardens, London W14 8EZ, has again kindly agreed to host us. After the AGM there will be a break for networking over a glass of Georgian wine, courtesy of the Embassy.
Then there will be some short talks to members:-
a) A review of the past year by HE Giorgi Badridze
b) A talk on portage in Georgia by Dr Sean Cameron
c) Talks by two Georgian students in London, Elene Melikishvili (KCL) and Ana Lomtadze (UCL).
It promises to be an interesting evening.
This event is for members only who should already have received the notice, report and accounts.
Richard Lewington: A Personal View of My Year with the EU Monitoring Mission in Georgia - 3 October 2012
The Chatham House Russia and Eurasia Programme and British Georgian Society are holding an expert roundtable with Richard Lewington Wednesday 3 October 2012:
A Personal View of My Year with the EU Monitoring Mission
at Chatham House, 10 St James's Square, London, SW1Y 4LE 16:00 until 17:30 (coffee at 15:45).
The European Union's engagement in the conflicts of the South Caucasus has often been criticised for being neither sufficiently visible nor consistent in its approach. The EU Monitoring Mission in Georgia was established following the August 2008 war to help stabilise the situation on the ground. The Mission's observation and reporting activities have faced several problems, lack of access to to Abkhazian and South Ossetian territory among them. Richard Lewington will discuss the objectives, the achievements and the failures of the EU Monitoring Mission in Georgia and the challenges posed by state and non-state actors in the region. He will speak for approximately 15 minutes, followed by an hour for questions and discussion.
Richard Lewington worked with the EU Monitoring Mission in Georgia between August 2011 and August 2012. He joined the UK Foreign & Commonwealth Office in 1967 and his postings included Mongolia, Peru, the Soviet Union, Israel and Yugoslavia. He served as British Ambassador to Kazakhstan (1999-2002) and to Ecuador (2002-2006). From 2007 to 2009, he was Chief Technical Adviser on Tajikistan for the EU Border Management and Drug Action Programmes in Central Asia (BOMCA/ CADAP).
A transcript of the meeting will be available shortly.
First Swallows (Pirveli Mertskhali) Embassy Screening 17 October 2012
Kew Gardens Guided Tour and Lectures on Caucasian Flora 21 September 2012
A rare opportunity to receive a guided tour specific to the plants of Georgia and the Caucasus presented by official Kew guides. This will be followed by a double lecture at the Jodrell Theatre; the first by Clare Trivedi of the Millennium Seed Bank Partnership Kew who will update us on the important Seed Bank preservation work in Georgia (following on from the excellent BGS talks given by her and Guy Moore last year). The second is by Tinatin Barbishvili a botanist from the National Botanic Garden of Georgia, currently being hosted by Kew.
We will meet at Kew’s Orangery Restaurant (near the Main Gate) at 2pm ready for a 2.30 tour departure around the gardens (maximum of 15 per group). Afterwards we will be escorted over to the Jodrell Theatre for the two illustrated lectures.
Some members may want to come earlier, visit the gardens themselves then congregate at the Orangery restaurant around 1pm for lunch.
Peter Nasmyth, who will be there for lunch, will collect the £4 fees between 2 and 2.30pm.
Remember that Kew has four entrances and the walk from the Victoria Gate (nearest Kew Gardens station) to the Orangery is a good 10/15 minutes.
A standard day ticket is required for entrance into the gardens. Price for an adult is £14.50. Concessions are available.
A Chef In Love (1996) Nana Jorjadze 5th July 2012
A Chef In Love (Shekvarebuli kulinaris ataserti retsepti) is the only Georgian film to receive an Oscar nomination. There are two great central performances by Nino Kirtadze, making her screen debut, and Pierre Richard as the larger than life chef and bon vivant, traveling to Georgia to find new culinary delights and inspirations in the early 1920s. He falls in love with a beautiful Georgian princess (Kirtadze) and then this wonderfully romantic, sensual and comic story becomes intertwined with historic events as the Red Army take power in Tbilisi. Told as a series of flashbacks from the present the film is in French, Georgian and Russian with English subtitles, and directed by Nana Jorjadze. 100 mins.
7pm Thursday 5th July Georgian Embassy 4 Russell Gardens London W14 8EZ
Tao Klarjeti - Legacy & Perception Illustrated talk by Irene Giviashvili 28 June 2012
An illustrated talk will be given at The Courtauld Institute of Art, Somerset House, Strand at 6pm on Thursday, June 28 by Irene Giviashvili (Chubinashvili National Research Centre for Georgian Art, History and Heritage Preservation). Followed by glass of Georgian wine.
The term Tao-Klarjeti was used by 20th century Georgian scholars to describe the mediaeval Georgian provinces in modern North-Eastern Turkey and the related cultural heritage.
Tao-Klarjeti was a cradle of Christianity and of Georgian statehood and its cultural renaissance in the Middle Ages. In modern times it has remained a place of spiritual inspiration, which no-one could visit from the Soviet Union until the borders were reopened between Georgia and Turkey in 1992. Thousands of tourists now come every year to visit monuments like Oshki, Bana, Parkhali, Khakhuli, Otkhta Eklesia, Ishkani, Khantsta, Doliskhana …
Lundi Matin (2002) Otar Iosseliani 7th June 2012
Lundi Matin (Monday Morning) 120 mins, written and directed by Otar Iosseliani with Jaques Bidou, Anne Kravz-Tarnavsky and Narda Blanchet, won a Silver Bear at the Berlin Film Festival 2002 and a FIPRESCI prize for Iosseliani's "very professional and elegant protrayal of the absurdity and boredom of every day life".
This is one of Iosselliani most poetic recent films and is as well an homage to french film not forgetting it was made before the Rose Revolution.The film is in French, Italian and Romanian with English subtitles.
The screening will take place on Thursday June 7th at 7.00pm at the Georgian Embassy, 4 Russell Gardens, London W14 8EZ.
Future dates for screenings at the Embassy in 2012 are Thursday July 5th, Thursday September 20th, Wednesday October 17th and Wednesday 12th December.