Christos Loulis reads excerpts from "Erotokritos" by Vitsentzos Kornaros - Εικόνα

The SNFCC readers’ theater series, entitled PARABASES/READINGS, is returning to the core of stage reading this year, drawing inspiration from Cavafy’s verse, “Voices, loved and idealized.”

Seven theater protagonists, seven “idealized voices,” comprise two-people theater companies (in collaboration with young stage directors, renowned Greek composers and/or on-stage musicians) and attempt live theatrical readings of literary texts (short stories, novels, prose), all of them landmark works of Greek literature. In this way, the series utilizes the dramaturgy of the Readings that were recorded and presented by the SNFCC during 2020-2021, attracting great interest from the public.

The texts selection was compiled in collaboration with poet Nikos A. Panagiotopoulos (December 1945 – July 2023), to whose memory the series is dedicated. 

Sunday, February 25, 17.00 | LIGHTHOUSE

Christos Loulis reads excerpts from Erotokritos by Vitsentzos Kornaros. 
Directed by Dimitris and Orestis Stavropoulos

Erotokritos, “a love poem composed by the ever-noble Vitsentzos Kornaros”— as goes the byline on the cover of its first edition (Venice, 1713) — is an inexhaustible source of inspiration for iconic creators of modern-day Greece. For more than three centuries, the novel in verse of the great Cretan poet has known many republications and translations, and has influenced prominent representatives of Greek literature such as Solomos, Sikelianos, Prevelakis and Ritsos. Moreover, various versions of “Erotokritos” have been produced in theater by leading Greek directors (including Nikos Hatziskos, Thanos Kotsopoulos, Spyros Evangelatos and Vassilis Nikolaidis), while the work was also adapted for cinema by Nikos Koundouros. It also inspired our great folk painter Theophilos and was set to music by composer Nikos Mamagkakis, as well as by Christodoulos Halaris, sung by Nikos Xylouris.

Kornaros’s fascinating poem is written in the Cretan dialect; it combines scholarly and folk tradition and bears obvious influences from the Italian Renaissance. As early as the 17th century, it had already spread across Peloponnese and the islands: people loved it so much, so they memorized the verses and recited, sang, or read them. To this day, “Erotokritos” continues to move audiences deeply, because it speaks the “language of the heart” and “is completely devoid of any trace of linguistic inflation, any kind of rhetoric,” as George Seferis observes in one of his most important Essays [Dokimes].

Erotokritos is in love with Aretousa, the daughter of King Heracles, but her father does not deem him a worthy groom for his daughter and has him exiled. The two young people go through a host of adventures until they are united with the bonds of marriage: they are secretly engaged, Aretousa is imprisoned for refusing to marry the suitor that her father wants to impose on her, while a disguised Erotokritos engages in a dangerous battle and is wounded in his attempt to save King Heracles, who offers the “unknown” warrior his daughter as wife. Aretousa’s faith will be put to the test, but eventually there will be a happy ending.

The 10,000 verses of “Erotokritos” unfold a vivid narration reminiscent of a folk tale, a chivalric romance, or even Homer’s epics, featuring impressive alternations between tender scenes of the young couple in love and epic battles. And all of this is set against the backdrop of a fictional world that charmingly fuses together ancient Athens with the Byzantium and medieval Greece.

Music and sound design: Jeph Vanger
Lighting editor: Dimitris Kasimatis

The event will be performed in Greek.

PARABASES/READINGS program

Nikos Kouris teams up with Mario Banushi and reads Viral Pneumonia, the only short story Zisimos Lorentzatos ever attempted to write. | October 29, 2023
Iro Bezou collaborates with Danai Spilioti and reads two pieces of prose by Photis Kontoglou: Conan the God and His Monastery, the So-Called “Submergence” and Hosanna! | November 12, 2023
Maria Skoula teams up with Kornilios Selamsis and reads the short story The Detective by Dimitris Hatzis. | December 10, 2023 
Amalia Moutousi collaborates with Emmanouil Kontos and reads Moonstruck by Alexandros Papadiamantis. | January 28, 2024
Christos Loulis reads excerpts from Erotokritos by Vitsentzos Kornaros. | February 25, 2024
Akilas Karazisis teams up with Iason Aly and reads excerpts from the Architecture of a Dissolute Life, Nikos Gabriel Pentzikis’s trailblazing work. | March 10, 2024
Anna Kokkinou collaborates with Nikos Veliotis and reads Moskov Selim, the most remarkable short story of Georgios Vizyinos. | April 28, 2024

Advance Ticket Sales Points:

  • Online on Ticket Services website 
  • By phone: 210 7234567 (Ticket Services)
  • At the Ticket Services Box Office (Panepistimiou 39, Athens)

Online tickets pre-sales (Members)
Online tickets pre-sales (Public)

Pre-sale for Members starts on 22/11 at 12.00 (limited number of tickets).
Pre-sale for the public starts on 23/11 at 12.00.

    Ticket Prices: General entrance €12, reduced €8

    Concession tickets of €8 are available to students, people aged 65+,  minors up to 17 years old, the unemployed, Persons with Disabilities along with their companion, multi-child families and residents of the Municipality of Kallithea. Children can sit with their chaperones in any zone, with a concessions ticket.

    On the day of the concert, concession ticket holders will be asked to show their ID, as well as supporting documentation (student card, unemployment card, family status certificate for multi-child parents, certification of disability, utility bill for residents of Kallithea)

    Free tickets are available to Persons with Disabilities, by contacting the call center at 210 7234567 or via email at info@ticketservices.gr and by showing their ID and certification of disability on the day of the event.

    Important information:

    • Doors open at 16.30.
    • Entrance will be possible up to 10 minutes before the event's commencement.
    • Pre-sale is required. No order of priority will be available on-site.
    • Entrance allowed for children aged 6+.
    • All SNFCC areas are accessible to people with disabilities.
    • For more information or clarifications, please contact the SNFCC switchboard on 216 8091000.

    This event comes under a grant by the Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF). Alongside the majority of its events, which are free thanks to a series of SNF grants, the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center also organizes a number of events with affordable tickets, thus enriching its income sources and securing its long-term financial integrity.

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