17:14, Friday, 24.05.2019
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Concert behind bars


Natia Gogilashvili

“When first hope disappears from your eyes and then they get full off fear, you realize that you are a prisoner…” and “time is stopped inside these walls”… and “the days of the collapsed life are going on outside the prison,” “you hear the scream of your soul behind the bars”… and yet you hope that “once in reality, not in a dream, the iron door will open…”

The convicted women organized evening “St. Nino was coming across the mountains” in the prison facility # 5 of the Ministry of Corrections. The evening was dedicated to the St. Nino’s Day.

The participants recalled the life of Saint Nino; they read rhymes, presented musical and pantomime performances. The convicted women virtually broke the prison walls and made us visit all regions of Georgia. 

The clergies, representatives of the Ministry of Culture and Monument Reservation, Union of Writers, National Center of Manuscript and other representatives of culture attended the concert. Other female prisoners were sitting in the audience, some of them with their little children.

“I have visited this facility so many times and today, once again I realized how much I learn here: I learn patience, strength of spirit, patriotism, and value of my family. Each second on freedom is getting more precious for me,” the head of the Social Welfare Department of the Ministry of Corrections Leyla Aptsiauri. 

In the end, the director of the Prison # 5 Nestan Verulashvili went up on the stage and read a poem. She thanked to the convicted women for the concert. “The women demonstrated their true love towards art,” she said. As Nestan Verulashvili said, engagement of the convicts in the cultural events promote their rehabilitation so that they managed to effectively reintegrate into the society. 

Representatives of the Ministry of Corrections said similar cultural events are often organized in the prison facility # 5. The female prisoners organized New Year concert in the facility. During the New Year event, theater director Robert Sturua and members of the Rustaveli State Theater visited them together with the musical group Deadlocked Situation and representatives of different companies to wish Happy New Year to the prisoners. This year, inmates of prison # 5 organized evening in respect to 85th birthday of the Catholicos Patriarch of Georgia Ilia II, they sang hymns, different songs and danced national dances. 

The article was prepared in the frame of the project - Monitoring Conditions of Juvenile and Female Prisoners in Georgian Penitentiary”, which is implemented by Human Rights Center with the Bulgarian Development Aid. The views in the article does not necessarily express the views of the donor and it is responsible for the content of the article. 

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