The Singing of the Chveneburebi of İnegöl

Tbilisi State Conservatoire, the Folklore State Centre of Georgia, and the Georgian Chanting Foundation will hold a concert “The Singing of the Chveneburebi of İnegöl” at Tbilisi Rustaveli Theatre on April 15 and at Batumi Drama Theatre on April 17. The evening will also include a presentation of the book Georgian Polyphony in Western Turkey: In the Footsteps of Peter Gold which was presented at the Frankfurt Book Fair last year.

The evening will host a performance of folk songs and dances of Acharians who resettled in İnegöl (Turkey) at the end of the late 19th century. Of all the Georgian populations in Turkey, the İnegöl Georgians have best preserved traditional vocal and choreographic culture. Their repertoire includes Abkhazian dance folklore as well.

The publication comprises expedition recordings of traditional song and dance music from İnegöl; including the audio recordings and transcriptions collected by a great Georgian from Turkey, Ahmet Özkan Melashvili (1965-1966), the expeditions of American anthropologist and ethnomusicologist Peter Gold (1968), and Tbilisi State Conservatoire in collaboration with Trabzon University State Conservatory (2015, 2018).

The joint project of Tbilisi State Conservatoire and the Georgian Chanting Foundation contributed to the creation of a youth choir in İnegöl and a mixed-age choir of local singers in the village of Hayriye (İnegöl district); some of the choir members are descendants of older singers. The project aimed to revive the songs and instrumental pieces for chiboni recorded in the 1960s.

Among the concert participants will be about 40 Georgians from Turkey, some of whom will visit Georgia for the first time.

The purpose of the project is to introduce the unique culture invariably preserved by the İnegöl Georgians (chveneburebi) for over 150 years to a Georgian audience and to promote cultural relations between the two countries.

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