Though modest in size, The Gabriadze Theater is among the world’s preeminent cultural institutions. Presenting mature puppet performances full of depth and meaning, it has gained the respect and recognition of international audiences and critics alike.
Located in the heart of Tbilisi Old Town, just right next to the Anchiskati church, this theater building offers some interesting architecture as well. Thus, I have never visited a spectacle here (though I have bough tickets for a few times, but due to my laziness never visited) - I believe the Gabriadze theater this is one of the top tourist attractions in Tbilisi.
Gabriadze theater building in Tbilisi
The Gabriadze Theater stands in the heart of Tbilisi’s historic Old Town. Among the shows in its current repertoire are: “The Autumn of My Spring”, “The Battle of Stalingrad”, “Ramona”, “Diamond of Marshal de Fant’e”.
Box office at Gabriadze theater
About Rezo Gabriadze
Often referred to as “a Georgian national treasure”, Rezo Gabriadze influences the culture profoundly. His work continues to make an indelible and lasting impact on those who experience it. Being an artist first and foremost, he has gained an international reputation as a screenwriter, film and stage director, sculptor and puppeteer.
Gabriadze was born in the town of Kutaisi in what was then Soviet Georgia. He grew up in a world of arts and letters. As he grew creatively, his attention was drawn to film. He went on to write and illustrate over 35 screenplays, including the important films: “Don’t Grieve”, “Mimino”, and “Kin-Dza-Dza”.
Frustrated with the lack of intellectual freedom during the Soviet era, he turned to puppet theater as an surreptitious way of telling his dramatic stories. In 1981 he founded The Gabriadze Theater – a marionette drama theatre in the old town of Tbilisi. His productions of “Alfred and Violetta”, “The Autumn of Our Springtime”, “The Emperor of Trebizond’s Daughter” and “The Battle of Stalingrad” brought international recognition to the theater. It has been touring the world ever since.
As a painter and graphic artist, Rezo Gabriadze has contributed to over 50 books. His illustrations have accompanied the writings of Pushkin, Kharms, Bitov. His art works can be seen in numerous museums including The Hermitage in St. Petersburg, The Dostoyevsky Museum in Moscow, and Lenbach House Gallery in Munich and in private collections. His iconic sculptures “Chizhik-Pizik”, and “Major Kovalyov’s Nose” in St. Petersburg have become major attractions. In October 2012, Moscow’s Pushkin Fine Arts Museum presented its first major one-man show of Gabriadze’s paintings, drawings and sculpture.
Among his many international awards is “Commander of the Order of Arts and Letters of the French Republic”.