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  /  The Q&A   /  Natalie Beridze

Natalie Beridze

Natalie Beridze is a music composer and songwriter who is known as the first female electronic music artist from Georgia. In 2002 she landed a record deal in Germany and produced music under the artist name TBA. She’s released music on Max.E, Monika Enterprise, CMYK, Laboratory Instinct, Chainmusic, DADO Records and Apollo Records. In addition to her solo projects she has collaborated with artists such as Thomas Brinkmann, AGF (Antye Greie), Gudrun Gut, Joerg Follert, Marcus Schmickler, Nika Machaidze aka Nikakoi, Ryuichi Sakamoto, and Gacha Bakradze. She lives in Tbilisi, Georgia.

Are you more of a rule breaker or a rule follower?

Breaker.

What’s your motto / life philosophy?

Give a notch more than take and be grateful.

Describe your lifestyle in five words.

I really don’t know how.

What do you love about living in Tbilisi?

The absurdity and effortlessness.

How do you see the music scene changing in Tbilisi?

The music scene is evolving faster and more persistent than anything else. Techno is the biggest deal, but there are a few alternative platforms like the SOU festival, Close Encounters festival, Artarea Tv, and few more that offer people a different approach, a new angle to contemporary music. Georgia missed out on everything for 70 years in a row. It’s very natural to be so eager to catch up. It takes time to filter this amount of information.

Do you ever get ‘writer’s block’ when composing? How do you get unstuck?

Sure! With time and a lot of material behind you, you inevitably face the rigidness and abundant sameness in the process of music making. You often face your limits and struggle to overcome this kind of thing. The best remedy is discipline. It’s rewarding eventually.

Where do you go in Tbilisi to get inspired by creativity / art?

Not art, rather effortless ingenious absurdity in architecture, in interior embellishments, inner yard settings. All that western culture concentrated in museums and galleries is so sporadically scattered in Georgia, that people don’t even look at it as art or a source of inspiration. I love this about this country. But unfortunately it will be gone soon.

Finish this sentence. Life is…

Learning to contemplate a fleck of dust swirling in the sun beam 🙂

If you could travel to anywhere in the world tomorrow, where would you go?

High up north. Norway, Iceland maybe – cos it’s 43º in Tbilisi.

If you could write music for anywhere in the world where would it be?

I’d definitely write special pieces for war zones, if I could get someone to play them at certain frequencies.

What brings a tear to your eye?

VW commercials, Gaza and Syria, and being unable to give these kids a home and a mended heart and mind.

What spells adventure for you?

Being in nature makes me feel like a kid again and childhood is where adventure is.

How has your music evolved since your early days living in Germany?

In the last few years I’ve been writing music for acoustic instruments.

What is your advice for aspiring musicians trying to build a career in music?

I try to pass on to my students my endless love for music making process. The process is what makes it so worth it, not the outcome, not the sales, not the royalty statements. If you’re honest and loyal to the process, it’s going to pay off someday.  Music making process is a gift, not a possession. So be gentle with it.

What are your plans for 2018? Are there some highlights so far this year?

I’m planning to record and release my recent work – ‘Mapping Debris’ – which was written for the Swiss Mondrian Ensemble, a piano and string trio and electronics. It premiered at SOU festival in 2017, Tbilisi, Georgia.

‘Mapping Debris’ was compiled from pieces that have been written using  the unutilized sound and vocal samples on my hard drives, which resemble debris of the plane, at the crash scene, the sight of which makes no sense and is hard to be perceived as once functional and complex construction. Until the moment when with the help of collected debris, thorough analysis has been attained, resolving the mystery of the event.

The 6-piece performance with the Ensemble Modern at the SOU festival did not finalize the album, hence there are missing pieces that have yet to be translated into scores. We want to continue working on this album, performing the full content and recording it.

Also, In 2018 I started collaborating with a Georgian violist Giorgi Tsagareli and his string Ensemble “Georgian Strings,” which consists of ten string instruments. I’m is currently working on a piece, that will be performed at Close Encounters inTbilisi this September 2018, written especially for Tsagareli and Strings.

My piece for a large orchestra, choir and viola – ‘Babu Sxvenshi,’ was written specifically for the 100 year anniversary of Georgian independence and was performed in Tbilisi on the 26th May, 2018.