Young Georgian dancers win medals at international ballet contest

Georgian dancer Salome Leverashvili was awarded the Riga Spring 2016 contest Grand Prix. Photo from Salome Leverashvili/Facebook., 25 Apr 2016 - 17:02, Tbilisi,Georgia

Young dancers from Tbilisi's Vakhtang Chabukiani State School of Ballet Art won major awards at an annual international choreographic contest in Latvia's capital Riga.

The ballet school's junior dancers Salome Leverashvili won the Grand Prix while dancer Tatuli Talakvadze took home a silver medal for their performances at the Riga Spring 2016 International Contest of Choreography, which ran from April 20-24.

The judging panel awarded Leverashvili the Grand Prix of the Ballet Variation section for her performance of a piece from the classical ballet La Esmeralda.

Fellow ballet school dancer Tatuli Talakvadze claimed a silver medal in the contemporary dance section of the contest. Photo from Tatuli Talakvadze/Facebook.

The young dancer presented her variation of the principal role based on the famous novel The Hunchback of Notre-Dame by celebrated 19th Century French writer Victor Hugo.

Meanwhile Talakvadze claimed a silver medal in the Contemporary Dance section of the competition.

She was singled out by the judges for her interpretation of a variation from the contemporary ballet Sagalobeli, staged by Ukrainian choreographer Yuri Possokhov for the Tbilisi Opera and Ballet State Theatre ballet company (State Ballet of Georgia) in 2007.

This year's Riga Spring contest featured dance companies and artists from 20 countries including Italy, France, the Czech Republic and Japan.

Participants were judged by a panel of 14 jury members from Europe, North America and Asia.

In addition to the performances, the dance event involved training courses and master classes for choreography teachers and participants.

The annual Riga Spring contest is organised by the Eventus Fund, an organisation established in 2005 to "further and popularise children and youth activity in the field of choreography and art".