I just watched a fascinating documentary called “The Last Tightrope Dancer In Armenia” and I was so moved, that I was bawling out loud during the last half an hour of the movie. May be it was the state of mind that I was in, but the movie touched me profoundly. The full length documentary is about the dying art of tightrope dancing in Armenia, concentrating mostly on two old men, who are retired from the field but are intent on keeping the ancient art form alive. The two rivals have their own apprentices who at very young age are already tired of the horrid conditions of their métiers.
Directed by Inna Sahakyan and Arman Yeritsyan, the 2009 film, in Armenian, with English subtitles, is the winner of the Grand Prix of the 19th International Festival of Ethnological Films. The film, which has also garnished more than a dozen awards for Best Documentary in European festivals, very skillfully tackles the topic of posterity both on individual and cultural levels. The tightrope dancer is a potent metaphor for everything beautiful that is disappearing without substitute.