SAKIS IS BEAUTIFUL & BRAVE DIONYSUS
“He who will play the role of Dionysus should represent the new, ”bold and the beautiful”, which can fascinate today’s spectators and lead to the dominance of music over words and of enchantment over logic.” Director and actor Dimitris Lignadis is explicit as to why he has preferred the popular singer Sakis Rouvas to play the role of Dionysus in Euripides’ “Bacchae”.
Undoubtedly, this is the most discussed show of the summer. Sakis Rouvas’ name is considered a bold choice by the management of the Festival of ancient theatre of Epidaurus and the audience will have many opportunities to see the show, directed by Dimitris Lignadis, throughout Greece. “I will try to climb up this huge statue of Euripides as much as possible and maybe we can, at least a little, talk with him,” says Lignadis during the press conference. The director admits that he insisted on Sakis Rouvas participating in the play and feels lucky that the singer has accepted that invitation. “We had decided on producing “Bacchae” first and then subsequently, we began to select the actors. The results will be seen on the field,” he said.
The performance is not included in the festival programme at Epidaurus. Commenting on this fact, Lignadis states, “I do not feel harmed. We will visit as many theatres in the country as possible. Other people may feel strange at the end of the summer.”
Sakis Rouvas comments that this is a happy coincidence because he has long been “flirting with theatre” but no opportunity had hitherto occurred. “My big wish, for many years, has been to enter the theatre space,” states Rouvas and adds that he had attended relevant courses abroad, was engaged in cinema for a while and now, with Dionysus, he is at a point in his career and life which has changed things for him. It has made him think deeply. As for his desire to act at Epidaurus, Rouvas states, “I want to stand in this sacred place.”
Premiere at the Festival of Philippi, 13 and 14 July
The official premiere will be at the Festival of Philippi, at the Ancient Theatre on 13 and 14 July and afterwards the show will make a summer tour of the ancient, and not only, theatres in the country and will be performed at Irodio Theatre in September. The audience will be able to gain some insight before Philippi, at Euripides Theatre, Salamis on 9 July when there will be a work in progress performance with inexpensive tickets of 5 euro.
The summer tour of the show will support the objectives of the Association of Friends of Children with Cancer “Elpida” and its new cause, the bank of voluntary bone marrow donors, by donating part of the proceeds from the tickets. “Theatre and arts need generosity. One of the many bold features of this work is that it tries to combine a cultural event with public activity,” states Emilia Ypsilanti, artistic director of the company ARGO, which produces the show. “Elpida”’s president Mariana Vardinogianni has expressed her excitement that a group of artists has embraced the company and its new cause. “Elpida”’s messages will reach different parts of Greece by the summer tour of the show,” states Vardinogianni.
The show is based on a new translation by Yiannis Lignadis and the cast includes names with experience in ancient drama – Roula Pateraki (Teresias), Yiannis Karatzoyiannis (Kadmos), Dimitris Passas (Penteas), Maria Kitsou (Agavi) and Dimitris Lignadis (the messenger). The music will play a key role, involving mainly African percussion and a choir of different singers. Nigerian musicians featuring Michalis Afolaian will perform live music. The sets and costumes have been designed by Eva Natena and Daphne Assimakopoulou is the choreographer of the play.