July 2013

by Novvy Allan

DSC02136IADONI (canary, in Georgian) a well known Georgian choir not only sang but cooked in Womad’s fantastic Taste the World tent on Sunday 28th July. The singers, all from Guria province, are mostly quite aged now, and this was the first time any of them had ever been out of Georgia! They were brought over by the Art Gene Group NGO “Union of Art Gene”, whose main aim is to promote Georgia’s traditional folk culture www.artgeni.ge.

Unusually IADONI includes women singers expert in krimanchuli reminiscent of Alpine yodelling and specific to Guria, which we hadn’t heard in Georgian singing before and was amazing. Throughout the performance in front of a packed audience, one of the eldest men stood on the cooking stage and, assisted by one of the women singers, made Chakapuli stew - lamb, onions, coriander, parsley, tkemali (sour plum sauce) and lots of wine - instructing the enthralled onlookers in Georgian at the same time! DSC02147

Taste the World at Womad is the brainchild of Bristol based Annie Menter her idea to extend the experience of different world cultures by sharing cuisines.

After the performance people were invited to sample the Chakapuli washed down with a small glass of delicious Georgian Tsinandali white wine kindly donated by the Bristol Tbilisi Association.

“IADONI ... digging deep into the polyphonic traditions of Georgia that prompted Igor Stravinsky to declare it the music that most affected him in his lifetime”