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The Alternative Stage of the Greek National Opera Kicks Off 2022/23 Season This Month

Performances begin in September 2022.

The Alternative Stage of the Greek National Opera Kicks Off 2022/23 Season This Month

The Alternative Stage of the Greek National Opera announces an eclectic artistic programme for the 2022/2023 season, offering audiences a multitude of opera and music theatre productions, musicals, productions for children and young people, revivals of earlier productions, festivals and concerts. The founding donor of the GNO Alternative Stave and its enduring supporter is the Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF) [www.snf.org].

From September 2022 to May 2023, audiences will have the chance to enjoy a multifaceted and bold programme, with the participation of dozens of emerging as well as acclaimed artists in a series of productions of exceptionally high profile that employ both national artistic forces and leading figures and performing arts organisations from abroad. Centered on the versatile Alternative Stage hall with its excellent acoustics, a venue embedded in the consciousness of the restless segment of the Athenian arts-going public, while also spreading its actions to more concert and theatre halls and other venues across Athens and the rest of Greece, the 2022/23 season programme is dedicated, for the sixth consecutive year, to the kind of exploit that made the GNO Alternative Stage stand out in the Greek cultural map right from the start: exploring the boundaries of contemporary music theatre without limitations or prejudices, from uncomplicated entertainment to intellectual constructions of elevated aesthetical risk, and from the treatment of lesser known pages of artistic history to audacious music theatre interventions with a topical political and moral weight. Various age bands, cultural references, identitarian attributions and all kinds of sensual inputs cross paths in this year's Alternative Stage programme, which gives special emphasis to the fictional power of contemporary Greek cinema, hybrid and groundbreaking approaches to Mikis Theodorakis' oeuvre, and the centenary of the Asia Minor Catastrophe.

Opera productions include the new chamber opera Strella -a GNO commission- by upcoming composer Michalis Paraskakis, with a libretto by Alexandra K* based on the script of Panos Koutras' and Panagiotis Evangelidis' film of the same title (also known in English as A Woman's Way) that caused a sensation when it was released in cinemas in 2009, and directed for the stage by much-discussed theatre director George Koutlis; Kharálampos Goyós' innovative conceptual opera Antony's Death, on a libretto by Yannis Filias in collaboration with the composer and directed by acclaimed stage director Dimitris Karantzas, will meet live audiences for the first time after a first and highly successful cycle of online broadcasts via the GNO TV platform; the famed Berlin-based performing arts company Novoflot is coming for the first time to Greece and the GNO Alternative Stage to present the works The Opera #2 - On the Ropes (About the End) and The Opera #3 - The Outtakes, which will turn the Great Lawn of the Stavros Niarchos Park at the SNFCC into an operatic athletics championship!

Among the music theatre and musical productions we find Samuel Beckett's emblematic play Not I, with music by Zesses Seglias and directed for the stage by Savvas Stroumpos, Franz Schubert's staged song cycle Die schöne Müllerin, featuring mezzo-soprano and performer Lenia Safiropoulou under the guidance of choreographer Tassos Karahalios, as well as American composer Jason Robert Brown's Drama Desk prize winning musical The Last Five Years, that will now be given its Greek premiere conducted by Michalis Papapetrou and directed by the versatile comedian Dimitris Dimopoulos. Moreover, the programme also includes Underwater, an enchanting dance theatre production created by Xenia Aidonopoulou and Georgia Tegou for babies aged a few months to two years old and their parents.

Three revivals of earlier productions renew their appointment with the audience: the exceptionally successful musical Cheap Smokes to music by Panayotis Kalantzopoulos, with a libretto by Petros Vouniseas based on Renos Haralambidis' film of the same title and directed by Konstantinos Rigos; the sparkling musical Silence, The King Is Listening by Nikos Kypoyrgos and Thomas Moschopoulos ingeniously directed by Theo Abazis; and the electronic audiovisual work Neapoly by K.Bhta and Nikko Patrelakis.

The GNO Ballet returns to the Alternative Stage with a new contemporary dance diptych titled Human Nature, a continuation of the successful Human Behaviour triptych. The choreographies bear the mark of two internationally distinguished choreographers: the Greek Harris Gkekas and the Albanian Gentian Doda.

The Mikis Theodorakis cycle continues with four productions: the concert Mikis Theodorakis: A Trilogy featuring the exceptional Vamos ensemble from Crete , prominent GNO bass Tassos Apostolou and acclaimed vocalist Anna Koti. the recital Mikis Theodorakis: French and Greek Poets featuring the leading bass Christophoros Stamboglis and pianist Giorgos Konstantinou; the production Memories of a Little Girl, featuring vocalist Panayotis Petrakis, with the participation of the ensemble The Deserters (a small breakaway ensemble from the legendary Mikis Theodorakis Orchestra) and with Margarita Theodorakis reading her own autobiographical texts; and, finally, the concert Mikis Theodorakis: The Hostage / Marc Blitzstein: Political Songs featuring mezzo-soprano Anastasia Kotsali, pianist Giorgos Konstantinou and accordionist Kostas Zigkeridis.

The programme also includes the concert featuring the prize-winning works of the operatic vocal music composition competition 1821, Greek War of Independence and Poetry Set to Music that was held in collaboration with the Greek Composers' Union, conducted by Nicolas Vassiliou; the concert-tributes to the Asia Minor Catastrophe The Sound of the Cry, based on a concept by pianist Christos Marinos and performed by mezzo-soprano Ioanna Vrakatseli; Across the Aegean, featuring the acclaimed GNO soloists Julia Souglakou and Yannis Christopoulos; and a recital by the internationally successful Greek baritone Aris Argiris featuring songs by Franz Schubert on the theme of classical antiquity.

Finally, the GNO Alternative Stage Piano Festival, in collaboration with the Thessaloniki Piano Festival, sets its established, annual date with music-loving audiences in the Parnassos Literary Society Hall, with a programme dedicated to piano music of the 20th and 21st centuries.

GNO Alternative Stage programme curator: Alexandros Efklidis




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