Imber is a village on Salisbury plain, requisitioned by the Army during WW2 for street-fighting exercises and never handed back to the displaced inhabitants. After much negotiation and some mine-sweeping, the Army recently gave Artangel permission for a one-night performance there, with music by Giya Kancheli. There’s lots of detail on the Artangel site, including an interview with Kancheli. I’ve no idea how I managed to miss this. There’s a review on the Independent site, which makes a point about context:
The fact is, we weren’t focusing on the real tragedy – unmentioned in the advance publicity – which lies three thousand miles away. Though they don’t hail from it, Rustavi [Georgia’s famous choir] take their name from a now-derelict Georgian industrial city, which is one of the most desolate places I’ve seen. Thousands of people live there, but hardly any have jobs. And the monastery of David Garreja [“whose ancient frescos had not prevented the Soviet army from using it for target practice”] – just south of Rustavi – is still sublime. But it would take more than a fleet of buses to ferry an audience out there.
Incidentally, according to Frieze magazine, Kancheli is now based in Antwerp, because of his fondness for the cakes there.