In 1990, the entire Georgian Chamber orchestra migrated from Tbilisi to Ingolstadt supported by the automobile enterprise, Audi. They left the paradise which as legend has it, God had created for himself but left to the Georgian people when they missed the distribution of land to all nations. After 25 years of music making in Ingolstadt, the city’s cultural life is unimaginable without the Georgians. Still today, the ensemble is made up solely of Georgians under the current artistic direction of Ruben Gazarian.
The documentary musical theatre project, ‘The Georgians’, questions the history behind the unusual resettlement of a whole orchestra. What were the reasons for fleeing? What did the orchestra represent in Tblisi and what void did it leave behind? What is the unique Georgian sound ascribed to the orchestra? Is it possible that music can help foreignness be accepted by a host society? What are the conditions and prerequisites which enable a successful new start? Can we learn something from the Georgians as a successful model for integration?
In this project, the theatre group werkgruppe2 with current and former members of the Georgian chamber orchestra collected accounts and appraisals of the musicians’ experiences. Based on these interviews, together with members of the Ingolstadt theatre ensemble and some of the orchestra players, they developed a theatre evening about the exciting life stories of the Georgian musicians.