A family in Tbilissi ! Georgia

In the early years 2000’s, I discovered a movie called « 27 missing kisses » directed by , taking place in Tbilissi and others places of Georgia. The movie is great but what I was able to see of the country was totally appealing to me. « One day I’ll go to Georgia…! » I thought.

As I was doing research for my movie, I realized Georgian dance was unique, impressive and so typical. Nowhere else can you find such a dance.

Before leaving from Paris, I tried to find connection in this unknown country. Francis Prymeski, a contact found via Facebook connection, presented me to these beautiful people in Tibilissi. The Chumburidze family. My lovable Georgian family !

I felt adopted right away and became friend with all the members of the family. All the 5 generations live under the same roof. Though very different from home, it felt just like it !

The parents, Zaal and Maia, are dance choreographers, teaching kids in different classes but also in charge of the Asambli Seu, a professional dance ensemble from the University of Seu in the capital. Maia also designs all the amazing costumes of the company. Their youngest daugther Tako is one of the best dancers of the ensemble and trains every morning the other dancers on actual hit songs, before the live band starts playing traditional Georgian music for the rehearsals. Oto, their older son, a real sweetheart who was so helpful for my film, had just produced his first feature film. Married to lovely Nina, he had already 2 young boys with who, despite the barrier language, were fun to play with.

At first my everyday routine was to look for the perfect kid for MOVE ! in their dance classes but also to film the professional rehearsals. What a great time to watch all that dance all day.
I was also exploring the city for locations. On the first few days, I had two charming young assistants (from film school) to guide me, Ana Nozadze and Tamta Kajaia, whom Salome Sepashvili (from the Georgian Film Center) connected me with.

Meanwhile I had time to explore Tbilissi markets, cafes, shops, restaurants, night clubs and thermal baths. My family took me one night to a great Georgian dance show (from their competitor). Everyday they cooked the most awesome food in the world (I strongly recommend it), one of the best I had in my trip seriously !

Gorgeous Tako became a great friend and we would go out often and have fun ! She naturally became my assistant on the set, helping me translate for the kids I had to direct. She also has a part in the film with her handsome partner Mate.

Everything went pretty smoothly to make the film. Without my family it would have been much more complicated. I had a blast staying with them and experiencing Georgian culture and food and I thank them for all they did. More than needed really.

I strongly want to go back to explore more of Georgia and see my adorable family again. Unfortunately, the grandfather died a few weeks ago. So sad ! All the best to my Georgian family. Long life to their ballets.

One day, I’ll go back to Georgia ! 😉

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