On Georgia’s Mother Tongue day, one of Georgia’s most exciting new-generation novelists and playwrights joins Claire Armitstead, Books Editor of Guardian News & Media (and a longtime theatre critic), to discuss what it means to be a writer in the new Georgia. What are its freedoms, frustrations and flashpoints – from religious revival to the memory of Stalinism?
Lasha Bugadze’s novel Literature Express (2009; Maya Kiasashvili’s translation, Dalkey Archive 2013) casts a playful eye over Georgia’s EU yearnings and the dilemmas of writers from small countries whose language is spoken by relatively few. Also a TV and radio presenter and cartoonist, he won the International BBC Playwriting Competition in 2012 for The Navigator. His play The President Has Come to See You was performed at London’s Royal Court Theatre in 2013.
At the end of the talk, a trio of singers from Maspindzeli (a choir devoted to singing songs from the ancient polyphonic tradition of Georgia) will close the evening with a song wishing “many years” to Georgia and its people.
Join us for a fantastic night as part of Georgia25.
Ticket price includes a complimentary glass of Georgian wine.
This is the last in our series on Georgia as part of Where Europe Meets Asia: Georgia25. Georgia25 is a cultural feast – a week of talks and films between 11 and 17 April, presented by the Georgian National Book Center, Tbilisi, in association with Maya Jaggi, Artistic Director. Partners include Asia House; Europe House; Life Through Cinema; and Regent Street Cinema. With support from the Embassy of Georgia in the UK. The series has been timed to mark 25 years since Georgia declared independence from the Soviet Union on 9 April 1991. Read about the full programme here: Georgia25