The message reads, in part:
“Zurab Sotkilava had a long life and career. He brilliantly fulfilled himself as an outstanding opera singer of our time. His colleagues and a grateful public highly valued him for his vocal skills, artistic charm and selfless love of music.
Mr Sotkilava left a rich creative heritage; he educated talented students and made a unique contribution to the development of national performance arts.”
Mr Sotkilava died in Moscow on September 18 at the age of 80.