PLAY – for 2nd Tbilisi Triennial 2015

For the 2nd Tbilisi Triennial the actress and performance artist Mareike Wenzel is going to revive the old theatre in Machkhaani.
Together with artists, performers and also students from Machkhaani an interim administration for the village Machkhaani is etablished with its headquarter in the old theatre.
The task of this fictional administration is to set up a database of memories, wishes and also skills of the citizens of Machkhaani, in order to create new networks and collectives and to revive the old spirit of the village, which once used to be a cultural hotspot for the region.

For the opening on the 10th of October Mareike devised a performance with students from Machkhaani. They created their own version of “Romeo and Juliet” telling the story from their perspective and set in Machkhaani. They transfered Shakespeare’s story into the here and now of Machkhaani telling about the girls being married before they can finish school, young people leaving the village to study in Tbilisi, fights on the market place, disappearing balconies and pharmacies, first kisses and the every-day life in Machkhaani

Team Machkhaani

Performers: Tea Nadirashvili, Luka Papuashvili, Tornike Papuashvili, Pridon Menteshashvili; other participants from Machkhaani: Maka Chuchulashvili, Qeti Yatashvili, Salome Papuashvili, Misha Menteshashvili and all children from the Machkhaani Kindergarden, as well as all the people who shared their stories with us

Team Tbilisi

Mariam Gabritchidze, Lili Mamulashvili, Natia Kavtaradze,  Tamta Melashvili, Khatia Tchokhonelidze, Salome Dumbadze, Qeu Meparishvili, Ika Jojua (Aghnie)

With kind support of:





Special thanks to:

CCA Tbilisi, Nana Yaralashvili, Diana Kakashvili, Nana Bagalishvili and the whole village of Machkhaani

Short report by Rustavi 2 about the project:


Pictures of the performance and opening day

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When the young people of the village were asked what they really want to have in Machkhaani, they answered: “A cafe and a library”. So together we created a cafe and asked visitors from Tbilisi to bring books as a present for the new library.

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In the memory room next to the stage interviews with people of Machkhaani and their memories of theatre could be listened to, while watching old films once screened in the theatre.

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Under the stage a “casino” was set up with lottery, card games and horse betting and of course “chacha” bar, referring to the memories of some people about a fake lottery in the theatre.

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On stage different activities took place: there was the “Speaker’s Corner” – a place to debate and speak out, the story telling chair to tell your stories, a place to play…

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The month before the performance took place, we spent setting up the space, building the cafe, conducting interviews and turned the theatre into a public space again. The kids love playing in THEIR theatre

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Video by Aghnie:

Sound installation for the foyer by Aghnie



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