Permits May Be Required for Street Performers

In his election campaign, Mayor Kakha Kaladze promised that Tbilisi nightlife would undergo a revival. On April 20, City Hall presented a concept plan for developing a night economy in Tbilisi.

The Night Economy Development Project is managed by Sergi Gvarjaladze, who spoke to Georgia Today about the Project last month. When asked about the aims of the project, Gvarjaladze said, “The main goal of our project is to create new jobs and support the development of small and medium businesses, especially in the tourism and restaurant sectors. We want to position Tbilisi as a 24/7 city and organize cultural and sports events for a wider group of people.”

Gvarjaladze said recently that street musicians may be subjected to certain regulations and be required to obtain permits.

Gvarjaladze said that, while there are some very talented street musicians, there are also people who are not really musicians, which "damages not only our citizens but leaves unpleasant impression on tourists...Probably street musicians will be required to have a certificate that will allow them to play in the street." Gvarjaladze said that by 2025, Georgia expects to be hosting around 11 million visitors per year and according to the current statistics, 50% of them will come to Tbilisi.

The proposal raises questions about how City Hall would determine who is a real musician, or whether someone is talented enough to be acceptable for street performing.


By Samantha Guthrie

Photo: Joy Generoso,

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