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258 year old Telavi Theatre

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258 years old Telavi Theatre

Lasha Chkhartishvili
Theatre researcher, theatre critic

The Telavi Theater with its legacy, dramatic past and rich history is the most ancient theater centers in the Caucasus Region.
Among the permanent professional theaters in the Caucasus Region and of course in Georgia, it is the oldest one that dates back the second half of the XVIII century, based on references in ancient sources.
In the XVIII century, Telavi became one of the most important political, social, economic, educational and cultural centers in Georgia.
Establishment and development of professional theatre in Telavi was facilitated by the political-economic factors along with the rich theatre tradition (Improvised masqueraded folk theatre in Georgia – Berikaoba and Keenoba) under the rule of King Erekle II. The first attempt to establish professional theatre performances occurred under the reign of King Erekle II.
The process of establishing the professional theater was quite prolonged and consistent. King Erekle sent not few promising young Georgians to Russia to further their education. Among them were: David Batonishvili, Erasti Turkestanashvili, Ivane Orbeliani, Giorgi Avalishvili, Gabriel Areshashvili, later granted a title of Major (The King bestowed him the surname Areshashvili shortly after his return to his homeland). After their arrival to Georgia, they set foundation for various types of professional theaters in Telavi.
In 1758, Erekle II established a theological-philosophical academy. Teaching methods, content and techniques were similar to Russian theological educational institutions. As reported, students used to learn rhetoric same as “Art of Words” and declamation. The curriculum was designed to study the rules of dramatic theory, resulting in a creation of a new, original play. The students of a theological-philosophical academy used to perform wide range of plays with their own resources and performed it on the stage of the academy. The first such performance was dedicated to the 3rd year anniversary of the academy in 1761. It is the period when the history of so called “school theatre” started. This date is considered as the year of the first professional performance in Telavi.

Since 1761, the process has become irreversible and the theatre life adopted more diverse style with the time in Telavi. Obviously, the political factors supported and influenced the formation of different theatre styles and forms. Back then, under the reign of King Erekle II Telavi turned into a prosperous political, economic and cultural center. Opening of Philosophical Seminary in Telavi in 1782 (based on traditions of academy built in 1758) was of high importance since it reinforced development of “School Theatre”. The rector of the seminary was David Alexi-Meskhishvili (1745-1824). The following original plays were performed in this period: "Praise of King Erekle II", "Giorgi III". Mystery "Useli" by David Meskhishvili, "Conversation of Elder and Young Scribes", etc. The list of these plays are mentioned not only in Georgian written sources but also in Russian.
One of the most distinguished figures of school drama was the rector of Telavi Seminary, David Alexi-Meskhishvili. His contemporaries wrote the following about him:"Intelligent person, a poet, a noble artist - author of not few philosophical and theological books".Written sources and story-tellingapprove that he took part in performances and was highly acclaimed for his "artistic nature".
At the end of the 80s and early 90s of the XVIII century in Telavi, there were located two theatre venues of Giorgi Avalishvili and Gabriel Major.
In 1790, the theater of excellence by Giorgi Avalishvili (1762-1850) was set up during King Erekle's reign in Telavi. Giorgi Avalishvili was one of the young professionals sent to Russia by the King Erekle II. The theatre was led by Giorgi Avalishvili who spent quite a long time at the King's residencein Russia. He was extremely fond of theatre and shortly after returning to his homeland he founded classical theatre, based on the art of historical tradition and aesthetic attitudes of ancient Georgian theatre "Sakhioba". The Royal family members also performed at Giorgi Avalishvili's royal theatre. Among them were Tamaz Andronikashvili, David and Mirian Batonishvili, daughters of the king, as well as daughters of Orbeliani and Avalishvili, the commander Ioane Orbeliani's priest, Joseph and Major Gabriel - "Creator of Comedies" - who was granted Areshashvili title by the King. "Sakhioba" took place at the royal halls, hippodromes and open spaces. David Machabeli was the head of the Theatre Company.

In those days, the repertoire of the theatre mainly consisted of plays translated from foreign languages. Giorgi Avalishvili translates Russian dramatist A.P. Sumarokov's comedy: "Horn Bearers","Mother of ragged Woman", "Argument" and "Conversation of the Dead"- satire in a dialogue style. He writes and presents an original play "King Teimuraz".
Georgian drama immensely develops in Giorgi Avalishvili's period.  In the history of Georgian dramaturgy there is a distinctive place for Giorgi Avalishvili's legacy, who was committed to the principles of European theater and drama. He exceptionally supported the introduction of classical principles and wrote original plays. He wrote the play "King Teimuraz".
In this period David Cholokashvili's "Iphigenia" was created for the glory and greatness of the King of all Georgia, King Irakli (based on Racine, performed in March, 1795). Performance was deliberately written in archaic Georgian as follows the laws of classics but (along with G. Piranishvili's play "Tragedy of the Knight in the Panter's Skin") it was not highly acclaimed by the Minister of Education of Russia due to the violation of drama rules. Although the real reason behind all this might have been totally different. 
Since "Iphigenia" by D. Cholokashvili advanced patriotic themes, it is logical to assume that it was prohibited in Russia.
In the 90s of the XVIII century, at Giorgi Avalishvili's theatre there were staged not few plays written or translated by Aleksandre Amilakhvari, Goderzi Piranashvili, Teimuraz Batonishvili. These facts demonstrate that the Russian culture was not a sole source for Georgian drama or theatre tradition. Yet, there was a direct way to experience European theatre traditions and legacy.
During the same period when Giorgi Avalishvili's theatre was formulating, soon another theatre center was established by the former member of the very theatre company, Major Gabriel who served as a playwright and entrepreneur of the theatre.

Name of Artillery Major Gabriel is also connected to the Georgian theatre of  the King Erekle II. Documented information is preserved at Telavi Historical Museum. In the 60s, writer Aleksandre Orbeliani had preserved a ticket of Major Gabriel's theater. It was printed on a small blue paper.
Major Gabriel was an entrepreneur and director at the theatre.His theatre was a "joy" for the King and "only affordable by the elite". Accordingly, repertoire based on classic plays was very delicately selected. King Erekle II granted him a title of Areshashvili. 
Another distinguished figure of the Erekle King Theatre Era is "Head of the theatre Company"- Machabela, whose name is mentioned differently in diverse sources: Tamaz, Levan or David. As reported, he was an extremely talented Georgian actor, coming from low class family background. David Machabeli is presented as an interesting individual by Teimuraz Batonishvili. In 1795, during the invasion of the invasion of Agha-Mohammad Khan, David Machabeli led the army of actors in the battlefield. With his comrades, he heroically passed away in an unequal battle. Major Gabriel "fearlessly died on his war cannon". Lord Ioane Abashidze was killed in the battle as well. As King Erekle's right hand historician Oman Kherkheulidze reports, Major Gabriel died along with Machabeli in Krtsanisi Battle in 1795. Major Gabriel was artillerist and he had a title of Major. His contribution in Krtsanisi battle was immense. He was extremely courageous and fearless figure.

In 1795, "Krtsanisi tragedy ended the history of the first Georgian professional theater" - outlines Vasil Kiknadze (a theatre critic from King Erekle's era) in his book "History of Georgian Theatre Drama".
Establishment and development of public professional theatre in King Erekle era was a significant phenomenon not only for the city Telavi but also for the Georgian Theatre history in general. Hence, this epoch delivered Georgian original classicism in the theatre drama and classicism in professional theatre.
After heroic death of King Erekle's Theatre Company in the battle, theatre life stopped functioning not only in Telavi but throughout Georgia. Only 55 years later, theatre community started to produce performances in a systematic and stable way in a city full of such rich and diverse theatre traditions.
The first reports about theatre renovation after the Krtsanisi tragedy dates back to 1866. In newspaper "Droeba" (#7., 1867) chronicler Z. Tsinamdzghvrishvili states: "Georgian Theatre in Telavi has presented two performances in 1866. "Separation" by Giorgi Eristavi and "The Sun Eclipse in Georgia" by Zurab Antonov. Performances were highly acclaimed by the audience and the total income has been donated to the theatre". The same news reports state: "The royal palace of our former kings have been used as the theatre venue and the project has been completed for a long time but today we have finally seen the design of the building. Today, on July 11 we are celebrating a fascinating event - a rare occasion in a city of Telavi. On this day, the palace of our kings was selected and named after St. Nino. After the ceremony, artists performed outstanding scenes from the various plays".
Newspaper "Droeba" actively provides Telavi citizens with updated information about performances premiered in the city. On February 21, 1875, the newspaper wrote the following:"There were two Georgian performances in Telavi, while Tbilisi produced only one. None of our artists received a poor feedback from the society. One theatre group in Tbilisi have conferred on fake applauses from the audience." The reviewer adds that the representatives of different social background were present.

Newspaper "Droeba" (#25, 1875) provides a sensitive information: 1. Telavi hosted premieres based on the plays written in the city. 2. The theatre was on self-financing practice and the income was totally directed to the improvement of the material-technical base and 3. The Telavi Theatre was conducting charity activities. In those days it was a long-adopted practice at Georgian theatres although The Telavi theatre supported not only Georgian but also Armenian community. Similar precedents of having National Theatre financially assisting minorities are not frequent in the history of Georgian theatre. Before creating "Permanent Stage Area" (Same as the Rustaveli Theatre in Tbilisi) led by Ilia Chavchavadze, one of the first Georgian feminist, playwright, publicist and supporter of establishing "Permanent Stage", Barbare Jorjadze has performed in city Telavi.
Newspaper "Droeba"(#119. 1875) under pseudonym "Tsinamkhreli" reports: "Performance in Telavi was cancelled due to the fact that all actresses, including Barbare Jorjadze refused to perform right before the performance started. The next day, the performance was highly acclaimed by the audience and Barbara Jorjadze seemed extremely satisfied with her decision. She perfectly performed her role."
In the following years, theatre life strives in Telavi and a permanent theatre company is created in 1880. This fact was profoundly influenced by establishment of the "Permanent Stage Area" in 1879, the late 70s of the XIX century. This process encouraged prosperity of theatre life in the regions of the country. The establishment of a permanent theatre company was the most crucial factors for development of the stable theatre formation. In newspaper "Droeba" a profound journalist Romanoz Dzamsashvili-Tsamtsiev reports about establishment of the permanent theatre company in Telavi, highlights initiation of theatre club and theatre society in Telavi. (Newspaper "Droeba", March 17, 1880). In 1880, there were two premieres and both were a tremendous success.

The 80s of the 19th century is a period of immense movement and awakening. The situation is gradually changing in Telavi as well. The cultural background is also transforming. Local professionals such as V. Makarov, U. Kipiani, N. Rusieva and others are supported by theatre figures from the capital. Barbare Jorjadze, Nato Gabunia, Lado Meskhishvili, Vaso Abashidze, Davit Atskureli (Gamkrelidze), Aleksandre Kazbegi and others used to perform at the Telavi Theatre stage. Mako Saparova was a frequent guest of her hometown as well.
In the 80s of the 19th century, "Drama Society of Georgia" started to operate under governance of Ilia Chavchavadze and later Akaki Tsereteli.Along with their counterparts, they founded "Permanent Theatre Company (later the Rustaveli Theatre) in 1879, which toured in regions of Georgia and visited Telavi as well. Worth highlighting, the fact that profound artists from the capital used to perform at the Telavi Theatre.
The history of The Telavi Theater is firmly related to the name of Kote Marjanishvili. He started his professional career in him hometown Kvareli and later Telavi. He used to organize home theatre performances at his residence in Kvareli.
Kote Marjanishvili had intensive collaboration with Melko Hajmamudov, an entrepreneur who created first theatre charter (on May 1, 1894 during "The General Meeting of the Telavi Drama Forum). During his career ((1880-1915) the following shows were in repertoire: "Family of Culprits", Eristavi's "Homeland", also plays by A. Tsagareli, V. Gunia, N. Gogol and so forth. Kote Marjanishvili was not the only one who cooperated with the Telavi Theatre. Almost all prominent figures of the"Permanent State Area" took part in the Telavi Theater performances. In addition, the famous theatre figures used to organize various events and tours.
Theatre life became particularly diverse in the beginning of the XX century. On the one hand, a vigorous theatre tempo was encouraged by active and prosperous theatre life-style in the capital and the regions while on the other hand, in 1915 a railway station was constructed in Telavi. It reinforced intensive intercultural (and not only) relations to the capital.
Since 1904 local residents become members of the theatre company: Vano and Ioseb Kakabadze, Ivane and Tate Paatashvili, Melko Azhmamudov, Iliko Javakhishvili, Napoleon Astvatsaturov, Vano Gamkrelidze (Bekovich), Archil Gamkrelidze, Kote Onikashvili, Ana Markarov, Susana Bejanishvili, Babale Mamatsashvili, Elene Chkhubianishvili , Venera Meghvinetukhutsesi, Beglar Akhospireli, Solomon Goshadze, Vera Sidamonishvili, Vasil Gogolashvili, Sasha Iashvili-Chichua  and others. The performances were held on the other side of Telavi Khevi area. This building was a former workshop and a warehouse. In 1955, it was demolished during city reconstruction.

From the beginning of the XX century, the plays of the Telavi Theater were performed in Georgian, Russian and Armenian languages. Along with Georgian authors, masterpieces by world classic writer were also performed: Shakespeare's "Othello","The Taming of the Shew", J. London's "Wolves", Lope de Vega's "La Vida es Sueño", Dumas "Marguerite Gautier", F. Schiller's "In Tiranos" and so forth. Orchestra of amateur musicians was founded as well. Theatre group was also formed for beginner artists (1916) who performed minor roles along with professional artists.
In 1914 an outstanding director, one of the first professional Georgian directors Mikheil Korel visited Telavi with his wife actress - Nino Chkheidze. They were also educated in the Telavi Boys' Gymnasium. Both used to teach at Gymnasium for boys. Their professional contribution greatly inspired theatre progress in Telavi. A special tribute paid to duets from "Othello" and "Marguerite Gautier", performed by Aleksandre Imedashvili and Nino Chkheidze.
In 1914 a prominent member of "Permanent Stage area" returns to the company, Davit Atskureli-Gamkrelidze and his brother Vakhtang. Their dedicated work towards intensive development of artistic value of The Telavi Theatre was outstanding. Ilia Chavchavadze spoke dearly about Vakhtang Gamkrelidze's role as Svimon Leonidze from D. Eristavi's "Homeland".
In the beginning of the XX century, there was a prominent and extremely popular local actress of The Telavi Theatre Company, Ana Markarov. Local residents used to call her Dumbatsaant Anichka. She didn't belong to the elite society and actress with poor social background had to go through some harsh times. She debuted in Sundukiants's play and her professionalism was highly acclaimed. The performance premiered in May, 1905.
Society was greatly concerned about the building of The Telavi Theatre for decades. This issue was finally dealt with in 1925. On June, 1925 new building of The Telavi Theatre was opened. It was a vital occasion in the history of the theatre. The hall accommodated 400 audience members. Prominent Georgian theatre figures and elite attended performance "Fuente Ovechuna", directed by Kote Marjanishvili presented at the opening ceremony of the theatre. Before the opening of the new building, the theater was led by David Atskureli whose dedication was outstanding. Unfortunately, he was dismissed from his post. He passed away in 1928.

Grigol and Ketevan Kevlishvili joined the theatre and developed their artistic career here in 1926-27 along with Vakhtang Bakuradze, Marcos Lekishvili, Ketevan Machavariani and Aleksi Kupatadze. In 1927, The Telavi Theatre was named after Sergo Orjonikidze. Theatre season started slightly later in 1926-27. D. Kasradze's "King Arlekin" was premiered on January 28. Leading director of the theatre was a freshman of Russian Theatre Studio in Moscow, young director Galaktion Robakidze. "King Arlekin" was his university degree work and set designer was R. Gogniashvili. The press highly acclaimed the show. Special appreciation was expressed towards director and set designer of the show, including artists Grigol Kldiashvili and Vladimer Markozashvili. It is pivotal to mention that the abovementioned play was performed at The Telavi Theatre for the very first time.
In 1931, the former Government of the Soviet Union granted the Telavi Theatre a status of state institution. A well-known and highly acclaimed theatre director, intellectual theatre figure Vakhtang Garik was appointed as a head of the theatre. Numerous successful artistic work is connected to his name. His prosperous involvement determined and shaped artistic quality of The Telavi Theatre.
On the one hand, during Vakhtang Garik's period, The Telavi Theatre at some degree echoed the performances staged at The Rustaveli Theatre (A. Shanshiashvili "Anzor", Lope de Vega's "La Vida es Sueño", Schiller's "The Conspiracy of Fiesco", V. Kirshon's "Bread", P. Kakabadze's "Kvarkvare Tutaberi" and so forth). On the other hand, quite many Georgian original plays were staged at The Telavi Theatre before for the very first time before gaining popularity and reach other theatres. There were both classic drama performances and contemporary ones in the repertoire of the theatre. Just like other Georgian theatres, The Telavi Theatre had to undergo the impact of soviet influence: "Roar of Railway Tracks","Howl China", "Kamiri", "Spartakus", "Projection" and many others. However, abovementioned performances didn't contribute to the prosperity of the theatre.

After Vakhtang Garik's retirement in 1932, Kote Marjanishvili's counterparts and ideologists, directors Vakhtang Abashidze and Giorgi Suliashvili started to lead the theatre. Composers Andria Balanchivadze and Kote Meghvinetukhutsesi led musical adaptation of the performances. The following artist joined the theatre company along with Vakhtang Abashidze: S. Zakariadze, B. Zakariadze, M. Koreli, A. Kikodze, S. Vachnadze, V. Chomakhidze, K. Gogiashvili, A. Sikharulidze and many other.
In 1934, The Telavi Theatre toured to Tbilisi. It was the first tour in the capital and at the same time, it was a great responsibility for the entire company.On June 2nd, Telavi Kote Marjanishvili Drama Theatre started to tour to the capital with V. Kirshon's play "The Trial". Newspaper "Communist" published N. Gordeziani's letter that discussed The Telavi Theatre performance in the frames of the tour. Reporter pointed out a structure of the play and highly praised the artistic value of the entire theatre company.
During World War II, none of Georgian theatres stopped functioning including The Telavi Theatre. During war times, the theatre premiered 26 performances that echoed war and patriotism motives. In 1939-1940 theatre premiered Akaki Tsereteli's play "Little Kakhi". Historical-patriotic theme was the factor that determined the repertoire policy of the Telavi Theater in this period.
In the end of 1940, theatre premiered Vazha-Pshavela's "Expelled" (directed by G. Roseba) for the first time at The Telavi Theatre. Essentially, the scenic history of the play begins here. It is of vital importance to note that, in war times when the theatre repertoire was inspired by patriotic and wartime themes, the theatre managed to focus on the younger audience members and proposed comedies as well. The Soviet government encouraged the theatre top management for remarkable results. On February 21, 1941, at the presidium of the Supreme Council of the Georgian USSR, Roseba was awarded honorary rank of Georgian USSR Merit of the Art.
After the end of war in 1945-1946, director Aleksandre Mikeladze was appointed as an artistic director of The Telavi Theatre. He graduated from Moscow Academy of Art and Theater  Studio. He worked at The Telavi Theatre for two seasons. His distinguished performances staged for the first time on The Telavi Theatre stage are: K. Trenov's "Lubov Yarovaya", French folk comedy "Lawyer Patlen", Brighton's "Full Midnight".

In 1957-1958 young and later extremely well-known theatre directors Nana Khatiskatsi and Tengiz Maghalashvili started to work at The Telavi Theatre. Due to their professional contribution, originality and identity, they generated one of the most distinguished and productive periods of The Telavi Theatre history.
Tengiz Maghalashvili staged not few performances at The Telavi Theatre, including Garcia Lorca's "Blood Wedding", G. Rozov's "We Are Searching for Love", G. Ebralidze's "Visit Us", I. Mchedlishvili's "The First Keenoba". During the same season, Nana Khatiskatsi staged M. Mrevlishvili's "Avalanche", V. Hugo's "Tyran de Padoue"(titled as "Angelo") and Fletcher's "Taming of a Wife". These performances were distinguished synthesis of diverse theatre culture and refined taste.
Theatre critics altogether agreed that "Blood Wedding" was an immense success for The Telavi Theatre. The reason for this artistic victory is not only a refreshing theatre legacy but also Tengiz Maghalashvili's endless seeking for new horizons in directing, his courage and desire to explore deeper.
Nana Khatiskatsi's directing career bloomed with V. Hugo's "Angelo" which was premiered at The Telavi Theatre under the title "Tyran de Padoue". French dramatist's classic play was highly admired by the entire theatre community. The overall mission to perfection was encouraged by involvement of painter Elene Akhvlediani who visited her hometown especially for working on this show. It was the first collaboration between The Telavi Theatre and Elene Akhvlediani. It turned out to be extremely successful both for the painter and the company. Highly intelligent individual with vigorous spirit and dedication observed a working process of the director and artists. Since she lived in Paris for a long time and became familiar to aspects of V. Hugo's artistic legacy and life, Elene talked to artists about history and culture of France and Paris quite a lot. Elene Akhvlediani's set design greatly influenced an immense success of the show.

New interpretations of the Georgian plays appear in a repertoire of The Telavi Theatre in 1960-1965. N. Dumbadze's "I See The Sun", G. Berdzenishvili's "Weeping of the Vine", O. Mamporia's "In the Shadow of Metekhi", R. Japaridze's "Widow of a Soldier". Outstanding Georgian and foreign classic drama plays were staged in this period: I. Chavchavadze's "Is He a Human, This Man?!", "A. Tsereteli's "Little Kakhi", Mayne Reid's "The Headless Horseman", M. Lermontov's "Mascarade", V. Hugo's "Marie Tudor", E. Beecher Stowe's "Uncle Tom's Cabin", Molière’s "Scapin the Schemer".
Leri Paksashvili staged not few sucesssful performances at The Telavi Theatre and his career was quite fruitful for the theatre. Otar Mamporia's "Ietim Gurji" was another triumph for the theatre. It was highly acclaimed by both Georgian and republican press. Leri Paksashvili in his performance "Ietim Gurji" has brought to life images of Old Tbilisi life-style, relationships and spirit. "Creators of the show has presented a senses and perceptions of the current times that echo hard life of oppressed people's past and despite its complexity, it vigorously represents objective points of views. Director shapes an image of a poor individual with a decent personality."- Otar Egadze stated. This episode of the review is missing in other books or albums published a while ago, although this piece of the report is the most significant part of the whole review. It clearly highlights that Leri Paksashvili's Ietim Gurji is a new type of heroic character in the Soviet reality.
In the 70s of the 20th century, the scenic interpretations of Nodar Dumbadze's stories and novels have gained much popularity. There were almost no professional or amateur theaters in Georgia which did not stage the plays by Nodar Dumbadze. Audience in Telavi was always excited about meeting Nodar Dumbadze's honest, cheerful and decent characters from his plays. In 70s, The Telavi Theatre premiered his following plays: "I See The Sun" and "Me, Grandma, Ikilo and Ilarion". In 1970-1971, audience in Telavi has a marvelous opportunity to see scenic version of his extremely popular novel "Sunny Night". "Accusation" was Nodar Dumbadze's forth play which premiered at The Telavi Theatre. The abovementioned play was performed at numerous theatre in Georgia with great success, including The Rustaveli Theatre. Accordingly, it was crucial to propose an outstanding interpretation. The performance was successful and it was held at Akaki Khorava Actor's House as well.

In 1974, director Nugzar Lortkipandze was invited to The Telavi Theatre. At the end of the theatre season, he staged Rafael Eristavi's "Died First, The Married". Talented director's professional culture, the ability to perceive original drama materials and capacity to collaborate with artists was vividly present in this colorful, cheerful performance. The performance was distinguished by its united, concise, brilliant acting ensemble - each and every artist was extremely charming and expressive. Director Nugzar Lortkipanidze created a diverse, colorful, entertaining performance where the director's infinite fantasy and innovative creativity was present.
Nugzar Lortkipanidze was appointed as the leading director at the theatre in 1975-76. Meeting with his artistic legacy was unforgettable experience for the audience in Telavi and obviously, interest to meet him again was immense. With Nugzar Lortkipanidze's dedication and commitment the following artists joined The Telavi Theatre company: Nino Mamulaishvili, Zurab Antelava and Vano Iantbelidze. These artists became the leading force of the theatre through years. In the 70s of the 20th century, Nugzar Lortkipanidze's performances were innovative and different phenomenon in the history of Telavi Theater. His style shaped the stylistics and function of artistic life at the theatre. He shared numerous success with the well-known artists: Vakhtang Chiltispireli, Tina Burbutashvili, Venera Peikrishvili, Zurab Antilava in a role of Dervish and many others. Nugzar Lortkipanidze has also staged: G. Khukhashvili's "Uphill, Downhill", performed in Tbilisi at the showcase of republic theatres. Discussion of the performance was held. Dimitri Aleksidze, the Chairman of the Georgian Theater Society positively evaluated the performance, but the discussion about the staging technique was held between theatre critics, G.Gogoladze and K. Ninikashvili.
1977-78 theatre season was one of the most prosperous and outstanding periods of the theatre. This year theatre premiered Federico Garcia Lorca's "The House of Bernarda Alba". The theatre company was already familiar with the legendary Spanish playwright. Audience in Telavi had not forgotten Tengiz Maghalashvili's performance "Blood Wedding", staged two decades ago. This performance is an incredibly impressive memory for audience here and a honorable past experience for artists.
Staging performances for young generations has become a tradition during Nugzar Lortkipanidze's period at the theatre. Tamaz Chiladze's play "A Role for a Beginner Artist" was staged at The Telavi Theatre. Levan Mirtskhulava, a young student of Shota Rustaveli Theatre and Film Georgian State University and later well-known director and mentor staged the performance at The Telavi Theatre. His débute turned out to be a successful one.

During Nugzar Lortkipanidze's period at The Telavi Theatre (1975-1982), the venue developed a distinguished artistic look, creative profile, professional vision for certain aspects and most importantly, it expressed its civic position. The theatre sought to speak from the epicenter of life, stress out the problematic, dynamic events and also excite and enroll audience in an exploration process. The theatre composed of a team that united all generations. Nugzar Lortkipanidze dedicated seven years to The Telavi Theatre and this period was full of creative discoveries and artistic celebrations. The Telavi Theatre gained popularity and company became well known not only in Georgia but also abroad, since the theatre actively participated in international festivals. During this period, The Telavi Theatre performances were broadcasted on television and it raised awareness in audience and strengthened image of the theatre. The first performance broadcasted was Nugzar Lortkipanidze's "Love Assembles" and later in Tbilisi, during a tour at The Marjanishvili Theatre, The Telavi Theatre performance "I Believe in You" (based on Korostilov's play, directed by Nugzar Lortkipanidze) was recorded and later broadcasted. This tour was organizedwithin the first republican festival of youth performances.   

In 1981, a new building of The Telavi Theatre was opened which met all the technical standards of modern theatre venue. The new theatre building where The Telavi Theatre is currently located accommodated 800 audience members. Project belongs to Grigol Jabua. The spectacular image of the theater building is created by luxurious interior, a vast foyer with a historic monument (the ruins of the King of Erekle flag construction), a priceless panorama and ceramic bas reliefs. Theater is decorated with an exquisite artistic taste of marvelous artist E. Kopadze, G. Klibadze, J. Rukhadze and an architect G. Tskhakaia. The façade of the building is decorated with stained glass windows looking through the theater foyer, the vestibule and the foyer organically combine with each other. The façade of the theatre was incredibly original and new to the Georgia since Soviet theatre architecture was inspired ancient theatre aspects. The Telavi Theatre is still considered to be as an original theatre venue in Georgia (except the Meskheti theatre and later XX century Poti Drama Theatre where the principle of stained glass is used).
Finally, a long waited day for many generations has come. On May 30, 1981, the most ancient Georgian theatre, The Telavi State Drama Theatre celebrated its new settlement. In a festive atmosphere, artists received a symbolic key of the building. Opening of the new building was truly a joyful celebration. After welcome speeches, there was an evening reception in the hall for guests. A new era has set the beginning in the history of The Telavi Theatre and it didn’t occur only to the new building. The new building was obviously putting more responsibility to the theatre company. The theatre also welcomed a new generation of artists. Exclusively for The Telavi Theatre, at the State Theatre University a special group of future artists was conducted. These young artists were truly a precious asset to the theatre. The following artists joined the company: Nino Kurtanidze, Zurab Lomidze, Lia Aslamazishvili, Maia Bichelashvili, Gela Chotlashvili, Nana Kemashvili and Zaza Kolelishvili. New cast members produced two performances: “The Misfortune of Darispan” and “Kukaracha” (Head of the group – Anzor Kutateladze)

Nugar Lortkipanidze staged a new and extraordinary version of Vazha-Pshavela’s “The Expelled” at the new venue of the theatre. Limitless potential of whole company was vivid in the show. The theatre presented it at the 1st Republic Classic Drama Festival held in Telavi. The company was adapting to the new environment of the building with lots of excitement and anxiety too, although the audience gave standing ovation to the performance. Young artist Eldino Tukhashvili was awarded by honorary prize for his prominent role of Gulkani. Nino Mamulaishvili was awarded by jury of the contest “Modernity and Theatre”, carried out by Georgian Theatre Society artist for her outstanding role of Nastenka in the performance “Live and Remember” during theatre season 1980-1981. It was recognition of the success of the theatre.
In 1982, a young director Aleksandre (Nukri) Kantaria was appointed as the head of The Telavi Theatre and from this very moment, a new and prominent era of the theatre has started. This young director with a minor experience attracted attention of theatre society straightaway. His visions, ideas and motives were outstanding. Due to his professionalism, The Telavi Theatre was listed among the most successful theatres in the country.
The first performance which Aleksandre Kantaria supervised as artistic director of The Telavi Theatre was Revaz Inanishvili’s “Sounds of My Watery-Glen”. The performance had an immense success and the press highly acclaimed it.
“Sounds of My Watery-Glen” presented by The Telavi Theatre was a distinguished performance of the festival. It represented a totally new angle of The Telavi Theatre artistic world, professionalism, unlimited sophistication, clarity of transformation and dynamic development of episodes. The fact that Nukri Kantaria’s attempt to stage prose resulted to be highly successful, it also indicated to his outstanding future manifestation in classic drama.
A huge success of the performance was not the only reason why this performance became so important – Revaz Inanishvili turned into a theatre writer, just like Giga Lortkipanidze adapted Nodar Dumbadze’s work to the theatre. Nukri Kantaria created a diverse theatre world of Revaz Inanishvili in theatre. From this period, the name of Revaz Inanishvili  was closely connected to The Telavi Theatre and Nukri Kantaria continued to explore writer’s endless potential in the future as well.
The second performance directed by Aleksandre Kantaria at The Telavi Theatre was Guram Dochanashvili’s “Tavparavneli Chabuki”. It was the second distinguished success for the theatre and the director. Nukri Kantaria came up to be a director fond of bold experiments and persistent exploration of unknown. “Tavparavneli Chabuki” was staged during his final university years and this fruitful period helped him attract attention of Georgian society and gain his well-deserved place in Georgian Theatre world. A completely traditional content and text was adapted for theatre. In the early 80s, directors didn’t use to adopt alternative spaces – it was quite rare for this period. Aleksandre Kantaria staged this performance in the main foyer of the theatre, near the ruins of the King of Erekle flag construction.
Nukri Kantaria continued to present works by modern Georgian writers and enriched the repertoire of the theatre with these prominent figures. In this regard modern problematic of those days were represented. One of such writers was Lasha Tabukashvili, whose play “Taming of a Falcon” was staged at The Telavi Theatre in 1984. This way, the director and artistic director of the theatre increased the number of audience, made it more diverse and encouraged youngsters to be more actively involved. Number of admirers also increased.

During 1982-1983 theatre season, The Telavi Theatre toured to Tallinn, Estonia with the two outstanding performances: Revaz Inanishvili’s “Sounds of My Watery-Glen” and Lasha Tabukashvili’s “Taming of a Falcon”. It was the first international tour in the history of The Telavi Theatre and a great responsibility for the company as well. Performances were held at Academic Theatre in Tallinn. The name of The Telavi Theatre was unknown till now for the Estonian audience.
Malkhaz Aslamazishvili’s involvement in The Telavi Theatre artistic world was exceptionally prosperous. He staged G. Nakhutstishvili’s play “Komble”. He staged his second performance, John Steinbeck’s “Of Mice and Men” in a totally different stylistics. Stage version was created by the director himself. The director was thrilled with delicacy and gratification while working on his first independent performance and as a result The Telavi Theatre presented “Dynamic, high quality performance”, stated by theatre critic Maia Kobakhidze.
1986 is a very important year in the history of The Telavi Theatre. This year The Telavi Theatre and Georgian theatre community celebrated 200th anniversary of the theatre. 225 years have passed since the first performance premiered in Telavi in 1986. Due to the decision made by the Soviet Union (Particularly the Ministry of Culture in Soviet Union) it was commissioned to celebrate 200th anniversary instead of 225. The whole Kakheti region was involved in the preparatory process of the jubilee. On October 12, 1986 a closing ceremony of the jubilee was held and of course, it was dedicated to The Telavi Theatre. On this day, Telavi became a center of Georgian culture where all prominent members of the society celebrated jubilee. Evening of the jubilee was kindly prepared by The Telavi Theatre company, under guidance of Nukri Kantaria.

The theatre and company which was led by Aleksandre Kantaria, seemed professionally matured enough to start working on Shakespearean plays. This idea was greatly nurtured by artistic director of The Telavi Theatre who by all means thought that the company was ready to work on plays by Shakespeare. The director selected Shakespeare’s less known play “Richard II”. There was no tradition of staging it in Georgia. The Telavi Theatre has been the first and the last one who has staged this play on the stage in Georgia. Seeking for experiments in his profession was typical to Aleksandre Kantaria. He and the whole theatre company had an exceptional trust and there was nothing that could distract this experiment.
1987-1988 theatre season is distinguished period in the history of The Telavi Theatre. In this season, theatre gets back to the world of Rezo Inanishvili.  Artistic director of the theatre is Aleksandre Kantaria who works on the prominent performance “Alale”.  
This performance has been the most highly acclaimed show of The Telavi Theatre as well as the most influential one in the history of the Georgian Theatre. Rezo Inanishvili wrote the play especially for The Telavi Theatre. The writer knew the theatre company quite well and was aware of their abilities, their features that he used for shaping certain characters that would be personated by the artists on the stage. Aleksandre Kantaria collected the very artistic group which has collaborated with Rezo Inanishvili while producing “Sounds of My Watery-Glen”. Working with this artistic crew was extremely prosperous for The Telavi Theatre. Set designer of the production was Tamaz Rostomashvili, composer – Gomar Sikharulidze, choreographer – Bekarmon Vardisashvili.
The following artists participated in the performance: Vano Iantbelidze (Alale), Nazi Araviashvili (Daro), Mariam Ghaghashvili (Tinana), Venera Peikrishvili (Tsetsiko Masho), Gela Chotalashvili (Malkhazi), Natia Rostomashvili (Izolda), Paata Guliashvili (Tristan), Nona Khumarashvili (Aunt of Alale), Maia Bichelashvili (Taliko), Nino Kurtanidze (Shukia), Zurab Antilava, Eldino Tukhashvili (Abrami), Zurab Lomidze (Vepkhia), Eter Babilashvili (Angelina), Shota (Mita), Davit Ghaghanidze (Robizona), Temur Khunashvili (Data), Giorgi Mamuchishvili (School principal) Eldar Tavdishvili (Chairman of the counsil), Avtandil Guliashvili (Military attorney), Karlo Kartvelishvili (Mad Dingua). The following artists performed as well: Tamar Maisuradze, Iza Shushanashvili, Dato Aghniashvili, Jimi Ghuzarauli.
The show was premiered at the end of the theatre season on June 27, 1987.
The performance was highly acclaimed in press and audience. Artists and characters in the performance gained popularity in Georgia. The performancewas recorded and broadcasted on television for few times.

One of the most distinguished performances directed by Aleksandre Kantaria at The Telavi Theatre was "Performance for Pedestrians" (written by Revaz Mishveladze). The performance echoed a routine life-style and the mainstream of the show was an endless aspiration towards freedom or fight for democracy. Although the Communist Party was still in power at the end of the 80s of the 20th century and the censorship was still a topical issue, but at the time of the "Transformation" it was possible to hint metaphorically what Georgians of that period had to express. It was an aspiration towards freedom. The performance was a bold and daring step towards regime of those days.
1988 was an important year for The Telavi Theatre as a world-known British director Peter Brook visited Georgia. The Telavi Theatre welcomed him in Kakheti region. Peter Brook visited historical places in Kakheti and of course, The Telavi Theatre. Peter Brook attended a performance "Alale". Artists were extremely nervous since the world known legendary director attended the show. At the end of the performance, Peter Brook congratulated the company on their successful performance. "It is a good performance, very interesting in a way that it is refreshing. I see that this theatre is a part of Georgian theatre, you performed in a most natural way possible. I felt the reaction of the audience and sensed that everything that was going on the stage was dear to them. It echoed their lives. Audience felt that artists fully enjoyed their contribution". Peter Brooks visit was an encouragement for The Telavi Theatre. It noted that the company was recognized as one of the most excellent ones among Georgian theatres. This recognition boosted motivation of the company for the future.
Nukri Kantaria served The Telavi Theatre only 6 years and his performance brought popularity to the theatre not only in Georgia but also abroad. Together with the director, Telavi Theater has also gained recognition.

In the 80s of the 20th century, the Telavi Theater actors became true celebrities of the Georgian theatre. In this period and later as well, the most popular artists were: Vano Iantbelidze, Nazi Araviashvili, Mariam Ghaghashvili, Zaza Kolelishvili, Venera Peikrishvili, Gela Chotalashvili, Natia Rostomashvili, Nona Khumarashvili, Maia Bichelashvili, Nino Kurtanidze, Zurab Antelava, Zurab Lomidze, Eter Babilashvili, Shota Bezhashvili, Davit Ghaghanidze, Temur Khunashvili, Giorgi Mamuchishvili, Eldar Tavdishvili, Avtandil Guliashvili, Karlo Kartvelishvili, Maia Lonzhanidze, Shota Bezhanishvili, Tamar Maisuradze, Tsitsino Papiashvili, Manana Zautashvili, Kakhi Rostomashvili, Liana Aslamazishvili, Davit Mghebrishvili, Khvicha Iremadze and many others.
Leading The Telavi Theatre was not an easy task for such an outstanding professional as Gogi Chakvetadze. The theatre company accepted new head of the theatre with high expectations and the director had full understanding of this new post. He became so attached to Telavi that he decided to move there from the capital. It is not surprising since Telavi with its charm, culture and society attracts everyone to settle down there. In this regard, Gogi Chakvetadze was no exception.
Interpretation of Tamaz Chiladze's "Attendance Day", directed by Gogi Chakvetadze was a great success for The Telavi Theatre. It is a ‘fantasmagory’ and this genre was innovative for the theatre company. Accordingly, for The Telavi Theatre it was a highly responsible task to present accurate sense of the genre and also transfer spirit of theatre through extraordinary characters of the performance. 
In 1989, The Telavi Theatre tours to Biberach, Germany. Friendship and partnership throve between Telavi and Biberach and this tour was help to celebrate this friendship. The following two performances took place in Germany: Aleksandre Kantaria) and "Attendance Day" (directed by Gogi Chakvetadze). The shows were great success. Both performances were held with simultaneous translation. During performance "Alale" some audience member watched the show without earphones since the show was explicit with its expressive means.
After a tour to Germany, the theatre dedicated Al. Kotetishvili's "Island of Comodo" to the tragic events of April 9. The performance was staged by Gogi Chakvetadze. The principal message of the show was to analyze Stalin's totalitarian-tyranny in a new perspective, in a new prism. Theatre critic Giorgi Tskitishvili wrote a review about the performance and highlighted incredible talent of the artists and energy of the show which has marvelously presented image of psychologically devastated and degenerated society - a result of totalitarian governance.

Gogi Chakvetadze was appointed as a head of The Telavi Theatre in an extremely complex political and economic period. Despite the fact that Georgia gained independence in 1991, destabilization and political chaos took place in the country. In the following years, political-economic situation became more complicated when the country faces wars in Apkhazia and Tbilisi. It hindered and obstructed everything including theatre life. It was nearly impossible, not only to create new performance but also play the old ones too. Theatre was not provided by electricity, heat and these poor conditions drastically decreased number of audience members as well.
On May 31, 1990, The Telavi Theatre was renamed. After carrying a name of Sergo Orjonikidze, it was named after a profound world-known Georgian classic Vazha-Pshavela.
Artistic collaboration between Kote Marjanishvili's and The Telavi Theatre starts in 1992. During hard periods in Georgia people could hardly attend shows and the halls were barely full, The Telavi Theatre had full house on Kote Mirianashvili's performance based on Astrid Lindgren's play "Rasmus, Pontus und der Schwertschlucker". Despite the fact that this work of the famous writer of fiction is not well known, the show was highly acclaimed. Such notable interest in audience was caused by two factors: performances for children were hardly staged at the theatres and secondly, it was rare to propose a remarkable magical world on the stage. 
In 1994, Gogi Chakvetadze stages Otar Mamporia's play "Ietim Gurji". Set designer of the show was Levan Rostomashvili. It was premiered at Marjanishvili Theatre and Irakli Uchaneishvili performed in a role of Ietim Gurji. In Telavi production, Gogi Chakvetadze set Temur Khunashvili for the role of the poet. In 1994, Gogi Chakvetadze stages Levan Gotua's "The King Erekle". Vano Iantbelidze performed a role of the king Erekle. Almost whole theatre company was invovled in the production. In this period, country was in a poor state - there was no heat, no electricity, etc. Only real fanatics of the theatre continued to stay dedicated to their profession. It was equal to heroism back then. They are real heroes who maintained theatre traditions until present times. Gogi Chakvetadze was the head of the theatre until 1997 but he still remains an inseparable part of The Telavi Theatre.From time to time, he has a position of the director or leading director and continues his artistic career. His distinguished performances at The Telavi Theatre are: T. Chiladze's "Farewell Lions" and "The Birdie Died in Glen", Otar Chkheidze's "To Whom it Belongs, to Whom?", Akaki Tsereteli's ""Neither earthly, nor heavenly creature", Lasha Tabukashvili's "Spring Beyond the Shutters" and others.

Aleksandre Kantaria returned back to The Telavi Theatre as a head of the theatre in 1997. He had an honor to work with a mature theatre company. Assembling it with young artists was a complex issue although with Aleksandre Kantaria's initiative and contribution, a special group was created at the Shota Rustaveli Theatre and Film Georgian State University. It consisted of young generation artists from Kakheti region who already had a connection with The Telavi Theatre. The group was guided by Aleksandre Kantaria and consisted of the following artists: Zviad Abashidze, Maia Bestavashvili, Natia Gigolashvili, Beka Goderdzishvili, Maka Gremelashvili, Tamar Kevlishvili, Irakli Kvantaliani, Levan Talashvili, Malkhaz Chidrashvili. Aleksandre Kantaria's studio was relocated in Telavi and it was the first precedent when students studied in Telavi instead of Tbilisi.
Nukri Kantaria returned to The Telavi Theatre with a very original show "I Have Seen Your Faces". The show was premiered in 1998. The allegorical title didn't relate to the relationship between the director and The Telavi Theatre. The performance was based on the actual problematic issues of Georgia during 90s of the last century.
Alexandre Kantaria's performances always echoed the reality of presence. He staged Niel Simon's "The Prisoner of 29 Avenue" and presented the following version of the play "I Have Seen Your Faces". The Rustavi International Theatre Festival was opened with the show. It was totally admired by the audience and the press reported in a highly positive way.
In 2003, The Telavi Theatre obtained a title of academic theatre institution. The following directors used to work at the theatre in 2003-2012: Davit Mghebrishvili, Kote Abashidze, Gogi Chakvetadze and many others.
In 2012, Paata Guliashvili was appointed as a head of The Telavi Theatre. He was familiar with the institution and years back, his professional débute occurred on the theatre stage in a performance "Waters of my Floods", directed by Nukri Kantaria. Long before that Paata Guliashvili spent a great amount of time at The Telavi Theatre since his father, Avtandil Guliashvili was one of the leading artists at the theatre.

Paata Guliashvili graduated from Shota Rustaveli Theatre and Film Georgian State University, faculty of cinema drama artist. He has been an actor at The Rustaveli Theatre but since his early years, he has been actively cooperating with The Telavi Theatre as a young artist and promoted artistic perspectives of the city Telavi. For instance, in 2003 on an international day of theatre, Georgian Theatre Society awarded Paata Guliashvili for his role as Bacha in the performance "Does it Matter if the Wet Lilac is Wet?!" with the title - "The Best Male Role". In 2003 at Rustavi Theatre Festival Paata Guliashvili was awarded with "Golden Mask" for his minor role in a performance "Farewell, Lions!", The Telavi Theatre.
Paata Guliashvili is one of the most prominent, vigorous and dynamic contemporary artist of Georgian theatre arena. His multiple duties combine a title of The Telavi Theatre, show business figure and cinema and theatre artist. Since 2005, he has been a member of The Rustaveli Theatre Company, enrolled by maestro Robert Sturua.

Paata Guliashvili has been an artistic director at The Telavi Theatre since 2013. His candidacy was selected under the recommendation council at the Ministry of Culture and Monument Protection of Georgia, which was approved by former Minister Mikheil Giorgadze. Paata Guliashvili's professional career was accompanied by numerous outstanding activities carried out at The Telavi Theatre.
Numerous interesting and original performances were staged during Paata Guliashvili's professional career. As an artistic director of the theatre he encouraged and supported young directors to explore and express their professionalism.  Levan Khivichia who graduated Master degree and specialized in drama directing under guidance of Robert Sturua, has carried out not few experimental projects at The Telavi Theatre. His outstanding works are "Espresso" by R. Smorodinov, "Christmas Adventure of Alice" by Giorgi Baidauri and "Horatio".

Debutant director Tata Popiashvili, former student in Temur Chkheidze's group stage Neil Simon's "An Odd Couple" and also a popular comedy "Funny Money"by Ray Cooney. In collaboration with a talented set designer Shota Bagalishvili, an experimental performance "4:48 Psychosis" by Sarah Kane was staged by young director K. Rokva. Young Georgian director Jaba Papuashvili staged a contemporary drama "Ketato" by Georgian playwright Lasha Bughadze.
Leading director of The Telavi Theatre, Giorgi Chakvetadze enriched repertoire of the theatre with numerous interpretations of classic drama. He worked on the following performances: renewed version of Nodar Dumbadze's "The White Flags". Gogi Chakvetadze also restored Kita Buachidze's performance "There's a Wicked Dog in the Yard". Director persued multiple esthetics in Tamaz Chiladze's drama world and staged the following plays: "I am a Tiny Swallow" and "Funeral Funded by the Government". He worked on the N. Ramishvili's "Georgian Chritmas Dream" and "Adventure of Mashiko" for young audiences. Gogi Chakvetadze staged Lasha Tabukashvili's outstanding play "Spring Beyondthe Shutters".

Gogi Chakvetadze also directored the following performances: A. Chekhov's "A Bear. Proposal", E. Kartvelishvili's "A Shock Show", "Who Are We?!" based on V. Petrov's "Theatre is my Love", N. Ramishvili's "Neither earthly, nor heavenly creature", set designer - Mirian Shvelidze and choreography - Tsisia Cholokashvili.
In 2012-2018, the following performances were staged at The Telavi Theatre: "Christmas Carnival in the Woods", "Christmas Tale", "New Year's Preparation in the Woods", "Stubborn Santa (Puppet performance), "Beautiful Teardrops" (mono-performance directed and performed by Temur Khunashvili) "Machabela" (mono-performance directed and performed by Temur Khunashvili), Heinrich von Kleist's "The Broken Jug" (staging director - R. Sturua, directed by N.H. Shvelidze, set design by profound Georgian artist Mirian Shvelidze and choreography by a well-known choreographer Tsisia Cholokashvii. More performances were staged: Temur Khunashvili's "The Magnificent Seven from Telavi", Claude Manie's "Blaise" (directed by G. Sultanishvili, set design by N. Kitia), G. Ospreashvili's "Adventure of Buratino"(puppet performance directed by G. Doghonadze), S. Kakulia's "The Roof" (directed by Nanuka Khuskivadze, set design by Mirian Shvelidze, composer - Mikheil Mdinaradze).
The well-known Georgian director Levan Tsuladze premiered a different scenic interpretation of Ilia Chavchavadze's "Is He a Human, This Man?!", And a director from Belarus, Mikhail Lashitsky presented a modern version of William Shakespeare's "Twelfth Night".
Sarah Kane's "4:48 Psychosis" is a coproduction between The Rustaveli Theatre and The Telavi Theatre. It is directed by Kita Rokva, set designer - Sh. Bagalishvili, The Rustaveli Theatre artist - B.Zanguri and The Telavi Theatre artist - T. Khunashvili.
Actor and director Kakha Gogidze staged a new version of Avksenti Tsagareli's "KHANUMA". A set designer is Mirian Shvelidze and a composer - Sergo Nikoladze.

In 2012 Paata Guliashvili invited a young director from Temur Chkheidze's group, Tata Popiashvili. She staged her diploma degree work "An Odd Couple". In this same period, The Telavi Theatre and Tumanishvili Film Actors Theatre started a coproduction. Director Kote Abashidze staged a play "Iron Guys", written by Italian playwright T. Aldo Nikalaus. Two prominent Georgian artists perform in the show: Vano Iantbelidze from the Telavi Theatre and Gia Abesalashvili from The Tumanishvili Theatre. The performance was highly acclaimed and magazine "Theatre and Life" reported the show to be another victory of The Telavi Theatre.
2015 was an extremely essential theatre season in the history of The Telavi Theatre. On April 30, 2015, a performance "The Broken Jug" was premiered. The show was staged in collaboration with legendary Georgian maestro Robert Sturua and a director Nikoloz Heine-Shvelidze. It is a rare occasion when Robert Sturua collaborates with Georgian theatres other than The Rustaveli Theatre. There are only two such precedents: he staged a performance at the Batumi Theatre after accepting the post of artistic director at Batumi Theatre. He staged "Misfortune of Darispan", in collaboration with artist Zaza Papuashvili and secondly, at The Telavi Theatre. These special occasions highlights his precious attitude towards these two theatres. The idea of inviting a world-known Georgian director at The Telavi Theatre belongs to artistic director and The Rustaveli Theatre artist, Paata Guliashvili. His dedication was a driving forth that resulted in Robert Sturua's acceptance to work in Telavi on the performance "The Broken Jug". Performance "The Broken Jug" was a huge success, highly acclaimed in press and toured in diverse festivals. Artist Vano Iantbelidze , was awarded by a prestigious prize "Duruji" for his role as a judge and also as the best artistic work of the year. Moreover, a special jury of Georgian Theatre Society for "The Best Stage Adaptation" and "The Best Female/Male Role" awarded the following artists of The Telavi Theatre: Vano Iantbelidze, Manana Abramishvili, Zurab Lomidze and Eter Deisadze from performance "The Broken Jug".

In 2015, Paata Guliashvili invited actor and director Kakha Gogidze to stage new version of "KHANUMA" for citizens of Telavi and Georgian theatre society in general. Performance participated in Festival of Comedy in Gori and International Regional Theatre Festival in Poti.
"KHANUMA" by Tsagareli has been staged on The Telavi Theatre stage for numerous times and accordingly, this performance carries rich and diverse traditions or customs of Georgian spirit. Staging "Khanuma" in the 21st century was a bit of a risky and vigorous step which was respectfully accepted by The Telavi Theatre, Kakha Gogidze and Georgian theatre community had an opportunity to enjoy an innovative version of the classic comedy.
The Telavi Theatre faced an artistic challenge when artistic director of the theatre Paata Guliashvili invited a world know Georgian director Levan Tsuladze to work with the theatre company on the play "Is He a Human, This Man?!" by Ilia Chavchavadze.
"Is He a Human, This Man?!" directed by Levan Tsuladze was diverse. He is director who unfolds kindness in his professional career and it is evident even in his legacy. It seems that he deliberately avoids to point out negative side of humanity and tries to reach out for the positive aspects of the mankind. More precisely, he focuses on the positive sides of humans and discusses negative features in a humorous way, as if this is a minor issue and what truly matters is to be able to fall in love (deeply).
Paata Guliashvili as a head of Telavi Theatre since 2012 upto now, has carried out not few infrastructural projects: installed a heating system both at the Main and Small halls. Various renovations took place at make-up department, diverse halls and foyers. Special guest rooms and relaxing areas were constructed for invited directors, artists and guests of the theatre. Dressing rooms are provided with hot water and individual bathrooms. Small stage with 180 seats and stationary seats was renovated as well. A totally new space was opened - a third hall which accommodates 40 people and is suitable for literary evenings. Rehabilitation process of theatre facade resulted in returning the previous design to life. An advertising monitor was installed on the facade. Auto-park has been reconstructed as well.
Founder and director of Charity foundation Cartu, Mr. Bidzina Ivanishvili donated a small car and a mini bus with 27 seats to Telavi Theatre. With the efforts of Paata Guliashvili, Ministry of Culture and Monument Protection of Georgia granted Telavi Theatre a statue of Vazha-Pshavela which currently is located in the foyer of the theatre named after him. The Rustaveli Theatre has granted sound and light equipment to the Telavi theatre.
Due to Paata Guliashvili's burning motivation and commitment, the theatre funding has been increased with an amount of  320 000 GEL which resulted in higher salaries for actors as well. Theater has achieved significant success in recent years. Mr. Robert Sturua has been appointed as artistic consultant for the theatre and under his guidance, not few highly acclaimed performances have been staged.

For the first time in the history of the Telavi Theatre, the star public monuments were embedded in honor of highly acclaimed, legendary artists and public figures of the Telavi Theatre: Venera Peikrishvili, Temo Khunashvili and Vano Iantbelidze. All three honorable artists were awarded by the special price of "Theatre Intercessor" by Georgian Theatre Society.
Among all the professional  theatres in Georgia, a 258 year old Telavi Theatre has been the first theatre (approved by the documented sources) that has been in service of Georgian national interests for more than two centuries and a half and creates an intangible cultural heritage - a true treasure of Georgian art.
The Telavi Theatre still respectfully continues to honor traditions and be the epicenter of Georgian Theatre Avant-garde.

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