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Georgian protest expressed in a violin clef2009-05-18 14:17
A musical festival called Tbilisi Open Air - Alter/Vision is to be held in Tbilisi. According to its initiators, this event is totally free of politics and is ideologically opposed to the international Eurovision 2009 held in Moscow.
"The fact that prevented our music group Stephane and 3G from participating in the Eurovision contest aroused much interest not only among the media but also among the musicians, who want to see a Eurovision alternative, - Archil Guledani, the initiator of the festival, told Reuters. - There are thousands of festivals in the world and it would be difficult to attract everyone's attention without any intrigue.
The notorious intrigue has been put up by Georgia itself. The point was that the country refused to send its singers to Moscow as soon as the Eurovision contest control group considered the Russian application and informed the Georgian party that they would either have to change the text of their provocative We Don't Wanna Put In, or present a new song. It is universally known that no political or the like actions, texts or performances are allowed at the contest. Such requirement is expressly stated in the Eurovision rules.
However, Georgia seemed to set the rules of its own, having presented a pre-planned scenario of another politically charged performance. According to Rosbalt, general producer of the Public Broadcasting Service of Georgia Giorgi Chanturia, without a moment's hesitation, said that the administration of the contest was much influenced by Russia's political pressure, while the song itself (in which chorus one can hear "We don't want Putin" - A.G.) does not imply any political context.
As it became known later on, an alternative musical festival is going to be held in Georgia at the same time as Eurovision, with 20 participants from 15 countries, Izvestia informed. According to Archil Guledani, Alter/Vision is going to become the greatest musical event in Georgia since the recognition of its independence in 1991. "Our audience is interested in music, while Eurovision is just a contest between the countries - a mix of music, politics and sport", - Guledani said not without sarcasm. The initiator obviously does not take into account that the only country to mix music with politics was Georgia; and that was the reason why it was refused.
It is interesting that the festival was planned to be held before the selection of participants to the Moscow song contest; however, after the Stephane and 3G story in Tbilisi, the date of the musical event was shifted towards May by the contest initiators being led by an old principle "to spite Russia". The main slogan also seems to have been chosen considering the political rather than cultural ideas. The "Music makes you free" posters can be seen round the streets of Sharden and Vatny ryad. That is the venue where the Tbilisi Open Air - Alter/Vision contest is going to start, moving further to the Tbilisian hippodrome. According to the Georgian media, the number of the festival sponsors is not limited by just one or two, it has reached 24! And that is considering the fact that the project is not going to bring much revenue to the investors, judging by free admission. Now, what is the reason for such sponsorship excitement round Alter/Vision, which list of participants can hardly be called star-spangled?
"This is another demonstration of the Western musicians' negative attitude to the Eurovision contest, - IA Trend is quoting one of the Alter/Vision initiators. - The festival in Tbilisi will be opposed to Eurovision that has obviously turned into a political, fully-controlled and bureaucratic event".