Entertainment

Samtredia celebrates the legacy of Erosi Manjgaladze

Georgia: Samtredia Dramatic Theater, named after Erosi Manjgaladze, hosted an anniversary evening on Tuesday dedicated to the memory of the great Georgian actor. 

The acting Minister of Culture and Sports of Georgia, Thea Tsulukiani, the Mayor of Samtredia Municipality, David Bakhtadze, local authorities and theatre representatives, and fans and admirers of the late artist attended the event.

The evening featured archive material of Erosi Manjgaladze’s work, his life episodes, and songs from his films and plays performed by “Theatrical Quartet” and Neka Sebiskveradze. The concertmaster was Nino Guliashvili, and the host was Nikoloz Tsulukidze.

The event was held in the artist’s native Samtredia with the participation of the local municipality and the support of businessman Sergo Rukhadze, who sponsored the renovation of the theatre building and the installation of a bronze statue of Manjgaladze in front of it.

Erosi Manjgaladze (1925-1982) was one of the most prominent and versatile actors of the Soviet and Georgian stage and film, who played lead roles in some of the most famous Soviet films, such as The Wishing Tree, Melodies of Vera Quarter, Londre, Kvevri and A Necklace for My Beloved. He was also a popular sports commentator of football matches and a voice actor for numerous films and cartoons.

He started his career in 1947 at Tskhinvali K. Khetagurovi Theater and then moved to the State Academic Theater named after Shota Rustaveli in Tbilisi in 1948. He played many memorable theatre roles, such as Ivane Mriskhane, Zimzimov, Lopez, Kvare, Gvadi, Oedipus, Bear, Yuri Deviatov, and Vano Fantiashvili. He also worked as a director and actor of the “Georgian Film” theatre since 1980.

He created no less attractive faces in Georgian cinema with his natural artistry, impartiality, temperament, beautiful timbre, musicality, refined humour and irony. Some of his most famous screen characters were Alexander, Severiani, Priest, Samchkuashvili, Agha Geurkov, Bumbula, Kakuta, Datiko, Varden, and Gvanj Afakidze.

He was also known for his voiceover work, especially for Vasil Chkhaidze’s characters in Eldar Shengelaya’s films “Great Exhibition” and “Sherekiles”. He also voiced the puppet character Tavadi Fantiashvili in the puppet movie “Dreams of Kojri Forest” and many others.

He dedicated a great year to developing TV- and radio theatre, which is currently named after him. He participated in TV shows such as Guram Dochanashvili’s “Love of One Thing That Needs Covering”, “A Man Who Loved Literature Strongly”, Rezo Tcheishvili’s “Shaliko Khvingadze’s Adventure”, Leo Kiachelli’s “Gvadi Bigva” and others.

His majestic voice and emotional and energetic commentary of football matches made him very popular as a sports commentator. He earned the nickname “Georgian Leviathan” for his radio broadcasts of news reports from the frontlines during WWII. Prizes named after Erosi Manjgaladze have been established for his contribution to sports radio journalism and for promoting theatre in the TV space.

The anniversary evening was a tribute to the legacy of Erosi Manjgaladze, who left an indelible mark on Georgian culture and art. The event was also a celebration of the revival of the Samtredia Dramatic Theater, which aims to continue the tradition of excellence and innovation that Manjgaladze embodied.

Zurab Kvaratskhelia

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