Six years after its major renovation commenced the Tbilisi Opera and Ballet State Theatre is reopening with a celebratory program of special productions.
The iconic venue in Georgia's capital will open its doors to the public on January 30 and mark the milestone by offering a program of restored and updated opera and ballet productions.
The iconic opera Abesalom and Eteri - the customary show for opening the venue's annual seasons - will open the celebration on January 30 in an updated redaction by director Gizo Zhordania.
The Theatre's ballet company will follow with its premiere of Gorda, a restored production of legendary late dancer and choreographer Vakhtang Chabukiani's 1949 classic.
Dancers of the ballet company in renovated rehearsal studios of the venue. Photo by N. Alavidze/Agenda.ge.
Chabukiani's ballet was restored following an initiative by company manager Nina Ananiashvili who worked to create a new choreography and libretto for the ballet.
Both productions will celebrate the reopening of the venue with fresh appearance - the opera cast will wear costumes created by national dress store Samoseli Pirveli for their occasion while the ballet troupe will feature creations by designer Ana Kalatozishvili.
Hosting the performers in their new appearance, the venue will maintain its customary look, however virtually no area of the Theatre was left untouched by the six-year renovation effort.
A strengthened building's base, new copper sheet roof, refreshed interior paintings, wider orchestra pit and new exhibition and patio spaces were just one part of the major technical update.
The recreated stage curtain featuring a sketch by late painter Sergo Kobuladze was restrung above the main stage in December. Photo by Ministry of Culture and Monument Protection of Georgia press office.
Performers, Theatre personnel and audience were all in the renovators' minds as new orchestra rehearsal studio, updated make-up rooms, furniture, equipment and musical instruments became part of the renovation.
While bringing the Theatre up to modern standards the project for its renovation also found a place for stressing its historic legacy.
An iconic stage curtain by late Georgian painter Sergo Kobuladze - destroyed in the building's massive fire in the 1970s - was recreated in Germany and hung above the main stage in December.
Beside works on the Theatre's interior, the outer yard space was also widened to accompany the refreshed venue.
The renovation project launched in 2010 with support of the Kartu Fund and was carried out by architect Leri Medzmariashvili.