Georgia’s Orthodox Church is against holding the electronic music festival KaZantip in Anaklia, claiming that it will ‘harm’ Georgians. Patriarchate of Georgia has warned citizens of “grave consequences” of the festival. “Any kind of participation in this festival and its support will bring grave consequences to individuals and the country as a whole,” it said.
KaZantip is one of the largest festivals of electronic music in the former Soviet Union. Since the mid-1990s, it has been held in Crimea at the end of the summer, but after Crimea’s annexation by Russian it was decided to hold the festival in Anaklia on the Black Sea coast, in August. Despite an official ban on drugs at KaZantip, security forces have to deal with people using substances there all the time.
The three hotels of Anaklia are already overcrowded, with 1000 security officers guarding the areas throughout the day. The number of DJs exceeds 500.
Art and Show LLC, the official representative of KaZantip music festival in Armenia, is unaware of the statement of the Georgian Church. Talking to A1+, Aexandr Grigoryan, Director of the company, says the agreement is still in effect and they continue to sell tickets for the festival. The price of the ticket is $203. Alexandr Grigoryan declined to say how many tickets had been sold in Armenia, saying ‘the information is confidential.’
He considers the statement of the Georgian Church to be tough. “Today we are witnessing legalization of sins parallel to destruction of faith and national values,” he said.
The Georgian Church states that ‘KaZantip is visited by so many tourists from different countries of the world because of ‘promiscuity’. They are attracted by mass orgies, but not music or any cultural event or a desire of revival of our country.’
Only after certain regulatory changes will the festival be allowed to be held in Georgia. The organizers promised to ban sex and drugs during the festival.
Mr Alexandr Grigoryan says the police in Tbilisi will oversee the festival which will be attended by thousands of young people from different countries.