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Georgia: Music and Dance
Country Study > Chapter 4 > Language, Religion, and Culture > The Arts > Music and Dance


Georgia is known for its rich and unique folk dance and music. The Georgian State Dance Company, founded in the 1940s, has traveled around the world performing spectacular renditions of traditional Georgian dances. Unique in folk-dancing tradition, Georgian male performers dance on their toes without the help of special blocked shoes. Georgian folk music, featuring complex, three-part, polyphonic harmonies, has long been a subject of special interest among musicologists. Men and women sing in separate ensembles with entirely different repertoires. Most Georgian folk songs are peculiar to individual regions of Georgia. The inspiration is most often the church, work in the fields, or special occasions. The Rustavi Choir, formed in 1968, is the best known Georgian group performing a traditional repertoire.

In modern Georgia, folk songs are most frequently sung around the table. The ceremonial dinner (supra), a frequent occurrence in Georgian homes, is a highly ritualized event that itself forms a direct link to Georgia's past. On such occasions, rounds of standardized and improvised toasts typically extend long into the night. Georgian cuisine, which includes a variety of delicate sauces and sharp spices, is also an important part of the culture that links the generations. In the Soviet period, the best restaurants in the large cities of other republics were often Georgian.

Data as of March 1994

Last Updated: March 1994

Editor's Note: Country Studies included here were published between 1988 and 1998. The Country study for Georgia was first published in 1994. Where available, the data has been updated through 2008. The date at the bottom of each section will indicate the time period of the data. Information on some countries may no longer be up to date. See the "Research Completed" date at the beginning of each study on the Title Page or the "Data as of" date at the end of each section of text. This information is included due to its comprehensiveness and for historical purposes.

Note that current information from the CIA World Factbook, U.S. Department of State Background Notes, Australia's Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade Country Briefs, the UK's Foreign and Commonwealth Office's Country Profiles, and the World Bank can be found on

Georgia Main Page Country Studies Main Page

Section 44 of 102


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