Radio drama, crime fiction and jazz music. This December, the Athens & Epidaurus Festival introduces Radio Plays, a new initiative featuring over 60 excellent Greek artists, working together in creative teams consisting of directors, actors, musicians and writers.
Five gifted, acclaimed directors will adapt for the stage an equal number of detective stories: Yannis Houvardas gives his own twist to a story by Vasilis Dannelis; Dimitris Katalifos delivers a radio drama version of a story by Filippos Filippou; Argyris Xafis crosses paths with the mystery world of Neoklis Galanopoulos; Maria Maganari adapts an Athina Kakouri story, and Giorgos Koutlis invites us to delve into the world of Amanda Michalopoulou.
Radio Plays will transport us to the world of crime, featuring beloved Greek actors, veterans and up-and-coming performers alike. Nikos Psarras, Alexandra Aidini, Thanasis Papageorgiou, Evi Saoulidou, Dimitris Imellos, Maria Kallimani, Nikos Chatzopoulos, Harris Fragoulis, Akyllas Karazisis, Kora Karvouni, Konstantinos Aspiotis, Giannis Dalianis, Alkistis Poulopoulou, Aspasia Kralli, Anthi Efstratiadou, Dimitris Papanikolaou, Kostas Berikopoulos and many more will bring these crime stories to life, to the sounds of original jazz compositions by stellar musicians, who will generate a noir/mystery atmosphere.
The programme is realized courtesy of Kastaniotis Editions.
BREATHLESS RADIO DRAMA
Through this new project, the Athens & Epidaurus Festival combines radio drama with crime fiction and jazz music, creating new audio works, featuring unsolved murders, romantic passions, professional rivalries, extortion and economic plots, eccentric detectives and psychologically unstable characters, seductive personalities with unseen, dark secrets.
“Building on the tradition of radio drama and taking it a step further, we decided to create a new initiative featuring works based on crime fiction, works that will be performed to the sounds of jazz. Strangely enough, I fell in love with crime fiction as a child. This early attraction began with children’s detective stories. I then quickly moved on to Agatha Christie and subsequently began to avidly read contemporary – mainly European – authors of crime fiction. At the same time, thanks to the magical power of audio drama, from radio drama to recorded albums, my imagination ran wild inside a world full of narratives and characters that remained etched in my memory. Amid these difficult circumstances we are going through, we decided to create works that could reach every home, exciting the audience’s imagination, peeking their interest, shifting focus from image to language. Selected artists will bring this language to life, to the sounds of original music, specially composed for these radio plays, all of which will jointly comprise a series of audio works which all of you will hopefully enjoy.”
Generation after generation post-WWII were raised with radio drama, a truly magical genre. Thanks to radio, audiences came to know the greatest dramatists of the 20th century, guided by the iconic voices of actors performing under the baton of major Greek theatre directors. Weaving together stage action with the solitary act of listening to the radio, combining theatre language and voice, radio drama has the unique privilege of transcending limitations of space and time.
Under the circumstances, as theatre faces ongoing restraints and insurmountable obstacles, the Athens & Epidaurus Festival breathes new life into radio drama.
Radio Plays will be streamed simultaneously at the podcast of Lifo and at greekfestival.gr, free of charge for everybody.
The radio plays
The Foreigner by Athina Kakouri
Directed by Maria Maganari
Cast Anthi Efstratiadou, Syrmo Keke, Aspasia Kralli, Dimitris Daskas, Evi Saoulidou, Nikos Psarras
Musical composition Dimitris Tsakas
Musicians Kostas Konstantinou (double bass), Kostis Christodoulou (piano), Jason Wastor (drums), Dimitris Tsakas (saxophone)
The Larks of Amerikis Square by Filippos Filippou
Directed by Dimitris Katalifos
Cast Alexandra Aidini, Dimitris Imellos, Maria Kallimani, Stella Krouska, Giannis Dalianis, Giannis Tsortekis
Musical compositions Dimitris Tsakas
Musicians Dimitris Verdinoglou (piano), Kimonas Karountzos (double bass), Panagiotis Kostopoulos (drums), Dimitris Tsakas (saxophone)
Welcome to Hell, Honey by Vasilis Danellis
Directed by Yannis Houvardas
Cast Stella Vogiatzaki, Polydoros Vogiatzis, Akyllas Karazisis, Dimitris Bitos, Alkistis Poulopoulou, Anta Poutani, Harris Fragoulis
Musical composition Thodoris Economou
Musicians Kimonas Karountzos (double bass), Thodoris Kotsifas (guitar), Alexandros-Drakos Ktistakis (drums), Thodoris Economou (piano), Andreas Polyzogopoulos (trumpet)
Vocals Alexandra Lerta
The Future of Greek Crime Fiction by Neoklis Galanopoulos
Directed by Argyris Xafis
Cast Konstantinos Aspiotis, Antonis Gritsis, Christos Kontogiorgis, Despina Kourti, Kostas Berikopoulos, Dimitris Papanikolaou, Nikos Chatzopoulos
Musical composition Alexandros-Drakos Ktistakis
Musicians Kimonas Karountzos (double bass), Giannis Papadopoulos (piano), Giotis Samaras (guitar), Dimitris Tsakas (saxophone), Jason Wastor (drums)
Vocals Alexandra Lerta, Iovi Fragatou
Human Condensation by Amanda Michalopoulou
Directed by Giorgos Koutlis
Cast Kora Karvouni, Eleni Koutsioumpa, Vasilis Magouliotis, Alkis Panagiotidis, Thanasis Papageorgiou, Alexandros Siatras, Konstantina Takalou
Musical composition Alexandros-Drakos Ktistakis
Musicians Dimitris Verdinoglou (piano), Andreas Polyzogopoulos (trumpet), Petros Klampanis (bass), Kostas Tzekos (clarinet)
The Greek Crimes series by Kastaniotis Editions
Radio Plays, an initiative of the Athens & Epidaurus Festival, is held in collaboration with Kastaniotis Editions. The adapted stories were selected from the Greek Crimes (Ελληνικά Εγκλήματα) book series, first released in May 2007. All five volumes drew a large readership of thousands of people.
The Athens & Epidaurus Festival is funded by the Ministry of Culture & Sports