Where was the first official rock festival held in the Soviet Union?
The Spring Rhythms: Tbilisi-80 was a musical event held in Tbilisi, capital of the Georgian SSR, Soviet Union, from March 8 to March 16, 1980. It was the first official rock festival in the Soviet Union and is frequently considered the turning point in the history of Soviet and Russian rock music.
The festival was organized by the Georgian National Philharmonic Hall, the Union of Composers of the Georgian SSR (Soviet Socialist Republic), and the Republican Center for Youth Culture at the Georgian Komsomol Central Committee. The acclaimed Russian musicologist and the first Soviet rock-critic Artemy Troitsky was also heavily involved in organizing the event.
Although dubbed by some as a "Soviet Woodstock", the festival was essentially a state-sanctioned musical competition with the declared aim "to promote the development of original Soviet VIA (Vocal-Instrumental-Ensemble) music... and to discover new talented performers and composers." Over twenty groups from seventeen cities of the Soviet Union arrived in Tbilisi to take part in the event.