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“Multinational” one-director show22.08.2011 | 16:43
The scandal about dismissing a legendary Georgian stage director Robert Sturua from Tbilisi Theatre named after Shota Rustaveli is gaining pace. Maestro's supporters demand explanations to the openly far-fetched accusation of xenophobia from the authorities. Some individuals, though, are eager to turn the situation to their account by all means under various unseemly pretexts. Details of the scheming related to Sturua's case were reported to GeorgiaTimes by editor-in-chief of Gruzinform information agency Arno Khidirbegishvili.
information agency Arno Khidirbegishvili.
The shameful story of kicking Robert Sturua from the post of the head of one of the most famous Georgian theatres entered an active stage after the statement made by Multinational Georgia movement. The leader of the organization Arnold Stepanyan has many times come down on the stage director accusing him of chauvinism. It was surprising, though, that the public activist's verbal escapades were addressed solely to the world-famous man of theatre, for the problem of intolerance towards people of other believes, nationalities and skin colour is, unfortunately, as relevant as ever in Georgia. But Stepanyan was stubbornly trying to stick the label of a xenophobe and hater of Armenian people to Sturua despite the latter's repeated remarks that he does not divide people by their nationality and feels great love for Armenians.
Naturally, Multinational Georgia is viewed in a dim light after Sturua's resignation. Noted for its oppositional views, the organization has this time openly played in favour of the ruling establishment, giving it a pretext to square accounts with the unwanted culture activist. Evidently to whiten his own reputation, movement leader Arnold Stepanyan decided to convince everyone of his impartiality and objectiveness. To avoid accusations of being connected with the authorities, he made the same demands against President Mikhail Saakashvili as he did against the former art director of Theatre named after Shota Rustaveli: xenophobia has damaged the president's mind, for he constantly allows irrelevant statements.
However, the attempts to cover his "putting down" the outstanding Georgian stage director with similar accusations addressed at the not-at-all outstanding Georgian president are painfully obvious. Editor-in-chief of IA Gruzinform Arno Khidirbegishvili is sure that now the leader of Multinational Georgia will simply try to dial back. "He's got too far and he doesn't like the dust raised around his organization. This man will do everything to avoid the blow", - he told GeorgiaTimes correspondent.
Let us remind you that Arnold Stepaynan's exasperation was caused by Sturua's utterance in an interview to Gruzinform. Arno Khidirbegishvili explains that the leader of Multinational Georgia certainly misquoted Maestro of the world theatre art. "This May 16, my reporter Baya Amashukeli asked Robert Sturua for an exclusive interview where he was questioned about President Saakashvili, whether a man can hate his motherland so much. The answer was: "He is an Armenian; what can I say?" By saying so, Robert Sturua actually meant that being an ethnic Armenian, the current president of Georgia does not have to treat the country as its native would. Then Robert Sturua added that he has got relatives among Armenians and also told about Saint Shushanik, a saint revered all over Georgia, referring to her as an example of loyalty and love for our country", - editor-in-chief of IA Gruzinform underlined.
Sturua's words seized out of the context produced an effect of an exploded bomb. For the first time, a person of such weight directly mentioned Mikhail Saakashvili's non-Georgian origin. But where is xenophobia and absence of respect for Armenians? Are there any doubts that any Georgian will (and must!) love his motherland more than someone of other nationality? Only Arnold Stepanyan knows the answer. By the way, he has got a bad reputation in Georgia. Arno Khidirbegishvili asserts that he was actually taken out of Armenia by Zurab Zhvania in the heat of revolutions that swept the post-Soviet space. The new Georgian government urgently needed to prove the fact of a civil society in the republic to its western sponsors and partners. Those who had real weight were naturally put to the background by Saakashvili's regime and totally different characters were promoted by TV and mass media. They were subject to the official Tbilisi, Stepanyan being among them. As any self-seeker, he is obsessed by a desire to get to power - either through Parliament, or by way of being appointed to some soft job in the government and he is ready for any provocation to realize his hopes, even if it is aimed against someone personifying honour and conscience of the nation.