Giannis Skourletis – bijoux de kant

Songs of the Greek People – Drag oratorio

AEF2024-Giannis Skourletis@Paris Tavitian_Press_kit


After its great success in the last year’s programme, Giannis Skourletis’ bijoux de kant returns with the Songs of the Greek People – Drag Oratorio, a groundbreaking performance, a bold reading, described by critics as ‘a leap in time, place, and gender’ (Lifo), and considered to have given birth to ‘a new artistic form that moves away from the strict confines of the nationality of art’ (Avgi).

The performance is inspired by the great Asia Minor composer, conductor, and pianist Giannis Konstantinidis (1903-1984). Having excelled in the genre of elafra (light) songs (‘Ksypna Agapi Mou’, ‘Tha Xanartheis’, ‘Ta Nea tis Alexandras’, ‘Poso Lypamai’, among others) by the pen name Kostas Giannidis, his cycle of Twenty Songs of the Greek People moved on to create a transcending text, a musical composition on a par with his ‘twofold’ artistic oeuvre.

Based on this charming song cycle and the texts of the artist and researcher Alexandros Papadopoulos, drag baritone Nina Nai, the performer Daglara and the pianist Giorgos Ziavras tell a story that may very well have been the screenplay of a Greek horror show. In a bizarre landscape, designed by the set designer Konstantinos Skourletis, they talk about the open trauma of patriarchy and deviance. They narrate a story about a different, often unseen, Greece. Idols of a well-hidden personal experience, they recount the passions and pain of otherness in a dystopian world.