Famous Composers from Georgia

List of notable or famous composers from Georgia, with bios and photos, including the top composers born in Georgia and even some popular composers who immigrated to Georgia. If you're trying to find out the names of famous Georgian composers then this list is the perfect resource for you. These composers are among the most prominent in their field, and information about each well-known composer from Georgia is included when available.

List people include Aram Khachaturian, Giya Kancheli and more.

This historic composers from Georgia list can help answer the questions "Who are some Georgian composers of note?" and "Who are the most famous composers from Georgia?" These prominent composers of Georgia may or may not be currently alive, but what they all have in common is that they're all respected Georgian composers.

Use this list of renowned Georgian composers to discover some new composers that you aren't familiar with. Don't forget to share this list by clicking one of the social media icons at the top or bottom of the page. {#nodes}

  • Aram Khachaturian
    Photo: Metaweb (FB) / Public domain
    Aram Il'yich Khachaturian (; Russian: Ара́м Ильи́ч Хачатуря́н, IPA: [ɐˈram ɪˈlʲjit͡ɕ xət͡ɕɪtʊˈrʲan]; Armenian: Արամ Խաչատրյան, Aram Xačatryan; pronounced [ɑˈɾɑm χɑt͡ʃʰɑt(ə)ɾˈjɑn]; 6 June [O.S. 24 May] 1903 – 1 May 1978) was a Soviet Armenian composer and conductor. He is considered one of the leading Soviet composers.Born and raised in Tbilisi, the multicultural capital of Georgia, Khachaturian moved to Moscow in 1921 following the Sovietization of the Caucasus. Without prior music training, he enrolled in the Gnessin Musical Institute, subsequently studying at the Moscow Conservatory in the class of Nikolai Myaskovsky, among others. His first major work, the Piano Concerto (1936), popularized his name within and outside the Soviet Union. It was followed by the Violin Concerto (1940) and the Cello Concerto (1946). His other significant compositions include the Masquerade Suite (1941), the Anthem of the Armenian SSR (1944), three symphonies (1935, 1943, 1947), and around 25 film scores. Khachaturian is best known for his ballet music—Gayane (1942) and Spartacus (1954). His most popular piece, the "Sabre Dance" from Gayane, has been used extensively in popular culture and has been covered by a number of musicians worldwide. His style is "characterized by colorful harmonies, captivating rhythms, virtuosity, improvisations, and sensuous melodies".During most of his career, Khachaturian was approved by the Soviet government and held several high posts in the Union of Soviet Composers from the late 1930s, although he joined the Communist Party only in 1943. Along with Sergei Prokofiev and Dmitri Shostakovich, he was officially denounced as a "formalist" and his music dubbed "anti-people" in 1948 but was restored later that year. After 1950 he taught at the Gnessin Institute and the Moscow Conservatory and turned to conducting. He traveled to Europe, Latin America and the United States with concerts of his own works. In 1957 Khachaturian became the Secretary of the Union of Soviet Composers, a position he held until his death. Khachaturian, who created the first Armenian ballet music, symphony, concerto, and film score, is considered the most renowned Armenian composer of the 20th century. While following the established musical traditions of Russia, he broadly used Armenian and, to lesser extent, Caucasian, Eastern and Central European, and Middle Eastern peoples' folk music in his works. He is highly regarded in Armenia, where he is considered a "national treasure".
    • Age: Dec. at 74 (1903-1978)
    • Birthplace: Tbilisi, Georgia
  • Giya Alexandrovich Kancheli (Georgian: გია ყანჩელი; born 10 August 1935 in Tbilisi, Transcaucasian SFSR, Soviet Union) is a Georgian composer who resides in Belgium. Since the dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991, Kancheli has lived in Western Europe: first in Berlin, and since 1995 in Antwerp, where he became composer-in-residence for the Royal Flemish Philharmonic.
    • Age: 88
    • Birthplace: Tbilisi, Georgia
  • Elisabeth Batiashvili (Georgian: ელისაბედ ბათიაშვილი; born 7 March 1979), professionally known as Lisa Batiashvili, is a prominent Georgian violinist active across Europe and the United States. A former New York Philharmonic artist-in-residence, she is acclaimed for her "natural elegance, silky sound and the meticulous grace of her articulation." Batiashvili makes frequent appearances at high-profile international events; she was the violin soloist at the 2018 Nobel Prize concert.
    • Age: 44
    • Birthplace: Tbilisi, Georgia
  • Otar Taktakishvili
    Photo: flickr / CC0
    Otar Vasilisdze Taktakishvili (Georgian: ოთარ თაქთაქიშვილი; Russian: Отар Васильевич Тактакишвили; 27 July 1924 – 21 February 1989) was a prominent Georgian composer, teacher, conductor, and musicologist of the Soviet period. Although in the West Taktakishvili is perhaps best known for his 1968 Sonata for Flute and Piano, his works include two symphonies, four piano concertos, two violin concertos, two cello concertos, and operas (Mindia, First Love, The Abduction of the Moon, Mususi, Three Tales). He also wrote several symphonic poems and oratorios, as well as adaptations of Georgian folk songs and a multitude of compositions for instruments and voice. While still a student at the Tbilisi State Conservatory, Taktakishvili composed the Anthem of the Georgian Soviet Socialist Republic. By 1949 he became a Professor of the Conservatory, as well as the conductor and artistic director of the Georgian State Chorus. In 1951, he received his first Stalin Prize (USSR State Prize) for his First Symphony. In 1962, Taktakishvili became Chairman of the Georgian Composers' Union; and in 1965, the Minister for Culture of the Georgian Republic, until 1983. He was awarded the title of People's Artist of the USSR in 1974, the Lenin Prize in 1982, and the USSR State Prize in 1951, 1952 and 1967. Throughout his career, he also served as a member of the international musical committee of UNESCO, and twice headed the electoral committee for the International Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow.
    • Age: Dec. at 64 (1924-1989)
    • Birthplace: Tbilisi, Georgia
  • Vakhtang Kikabidze
    Photo: flickr / CC0
    Vakhtang "Buba" Kikabidze (Georgian: ვახტანგ "ბუბა" კიკაბიძე, Russian: Вахтанг Константинович Кикабидзе, Vahtang Konstantinovich Kikabidze; born July 19, 1938) is a Georgian (formerly Soviet) singer, actor, screenwriter, producer, and composer. He performed in a number of films, among them the main role of a helicopter pilot in the iconic Soviet film Mimino. The son of Princess Manana Bagration-Davitashvili, Kikabidze was born in Tbilisi. He is a People's Artist of Georgia, has been awarded the USSR State Prize and the Order of the King Vakhtang Gorgasali as well as of Nikolai Wondermonger and Knight Cross of St. Konstantin the Great. He was also acknowledged by a number of various music contests and film festivals in the Soviet Union, Georgia and worldwide. In 1999, his star was embedded on the "Star Square" in Moscow. Apart from Mimino, Kikabidze also performed in a number of other films, including Don't be Sad (Ne Goryui), Melodies of Veriski Quarter (Melodii Verijskogo Kvartala), and Completely Lost (Sovsem propaschij). His last film, Fortune (Fortuna), was directed by the famous Georgian and Soviet film director Georgi Daneliya in 2000. As a screenwriter and director, Kikabidze produced two feature films: Be Well, Dearest One (Bud' zdorov dorogoj), which received the top award at the International Comedy Festival in Gabrovo, Bulgaria, and Men and All Others (Muzhchiny i vse ostal'nye). During the August 2008 Russian-Georgian war, Kikabidze rejected Russia's Order of Friendship bestowed upon him in July 2008 and cancelled the concert dedicated to his 70th birthday which was to be held at the Kremlin as a protest against Russia's actions.Vakhtang Kikabidze is married and has only one child, a son - Konstantin, and two grandchildren - Vakhtang (Vato) and Ioan. Vakhtang's wife, Irina, has a daughter - Marina, from a previous marriage to her first husband - Guram Sagaradze and a grandson, Giorgi. The Kikabidze family is from the Kartli region.
    • Age: 85
    • Birthplace: Tbilisi, Georgia
  • Vano Muradeli (Georgian: ვანო მურადელი; Russian: Вано Ильич Мурадели; 6 April [O.S. 24 March] 1908 in Gori – 14 August 1970, in Tomsk), was a Soviet Georgian composer. He was born in Gori, Georgia (then part of Imperial Russia) to Georgian -Armenian parents. He graduated from Tbilisi State Conservatory in 1931. From 1934 to 1938, he worked at the Moscow Conservatory. From 1942 to 1944, he served as a principal and artistic director of the Central Ensemble of the Soviet Navy. In 1946, he was awarded the Stalin Prize. In 1948, his opera The Great Friendship was censured by the resolution of the Communist Party Central Committee. After Joseph Stalin's death, he was restored to favor and granted the title of the People's Artist of the USSR in 1968. His later works include the operetta Moscow-Paris-Moscow (1968).
    • Age: Dec. at 62 (1908-1970)
    • Birthplace: Gori, Georgia