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Blog by Holly Taylor-Zuntz

2.8.2022 Journey of Georgian Songs at the Willow Globe, Wales

Ensemble Stumrebi on stage at The Willow Globe

What happened when 8 singers turned up in the Welsh countryside to sing songs from the Republic of Georgia? Ensemble Stumrebi and Voices of the Ancestors created a unique stage experience, said by audience members to be a ‘life enhancing evening. In fact, one Georgian audience member enjoyed it so much, she jumped on stage at the end of the show, saying it was ‘absolutely amazing’. But more about that later…

by Holly Taylor-Zuntz

30.11.2021 London stage show on polyphonic singing features at Black Sea festival and on Georgian Television and Radio

Voices of the Ancestors stage show at the Omnibus Theatre, London.
Photo by Annalie Wilson.

Directors Holly Taylor-Zuntz and Susan Thompson brought their London stage show to the Black Sea coast as part of the Giorgi Garakanidze International Festival of Folk and Church Musical in Batumi, Georgia. 

In October 2021 Susan and Holly of Voices of the Ancestors presented the video of their theatre show in Batumi, Georgia. The 20 minute stage show was created and performed in Summer 2021, and tells the story of Georgian songs coming to the UK and how they came to be loved by singers in community choirs. Susan Thompson, who co-created and performed in the show, says “The story is entwined with the Garakanidze family. It is close to their hearts. So it was especially touching to share it at the Festival, which is named after Gigi Garakanidze.”

9.1.2021 Blog Post – Sara Pascoe in Georgia

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Reviews and Listener Responses

I listened to some other podcasts of yours from the same series. Wow! You’re passionate and share so much knowledge and wonderful women singers’ voices. I’ll listen to the last one slowly over the week. Oh thanks for pointing me to these. Truly inspiring and they’re taking back to my days with ‘Song of the Goat’. Also, Im co-running a workshop for women on ancestry/roots so you’ve given me some inspiration for the music. And have been looking into circular dances as well so thanks for your podcasts!

16.2.21 Vanio Papadelli, London-based independent movement/physical theatre artist and regular lecturer in various HE Institutions (Goldsmiths, Rose Bruford College and Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance), Movement Director.

Dear Susan, I have just listened to the podcast. Thanks a lot for the link. It is a very appreciated and important job. Your podcasts are a very valuable. My great respect to Joan Mills.

Khatuna Managadze, Host ‘Art Expert’ Adjara TV 5/2/21 on Episode 7

I’ve listened to the first two episodes! I reeeeally like it 🙌 it’s super fascinating given I know nothing about Georgian singing 😂 it shines through how much means to you all and that is so lovely to hear
It sounds like the experience of singing together is a little bit like I was describing swimming with another person – you have to ‘feel’ each other and tune into all the subtle communication that’s happening
A beautiful thing

Georgia Mason 04/02/2021

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