Buy This Issue
The Weekend Neos Kosmos : 3 November 2018
DIGITAL.NEOSKOSMOS.COM THE WEEKEND NEOS KOSMOS | SATURDAY 3 NOVEMBER 2018 17 THEATRE The best thing about being Greek in the western world is that your heritage belongs to everyone. If you want to talk about archetypes, you will use the Greek myths. We are very lucky because this is our homeland. I don't need to explain who is Antigone, Persephone, Narcissus or why I chose them. In my sense for Greekness, spirituality and sexuality are the same thing. It's my thirst to redefine and reinvent beauty and harmony; what matters to me. Not deconstruction. One of the issues that I understand as coming from my Greek heritage is my obsession with dismembered bodies; the shard and its relation to the whole. There were scenes, like when the female dancer was walking with men's legs, where people were laughing. That's great! This is something you'd never find in Greece. People don't laugh; they think 'this is a serious performance we shouldn't be laughing'. When you work abroad you realise that what we consider to be weird or funny makes others laugh as well. The wit encourages our childish imagination and opens up communication. What I'm saying to the audience is 'Come on, let's dream together'. On a different note, what do you think about the situation in Greece? Are things getting any better? I think we haven't reached the bottom of the barrel yet. But there is a creative spirit starting to look out for alternative ways. Despair is now being transformed into common sense, saying 'okay now let's see what we can do with the means we have'. But I'm not the best person to speak about this because I travel so much and every time I return to Athens to my home and my friends it feels like paradise to me and I feel everything is getting better. The fact is that things are getting better for myself and other artists I know and respect for their work who were feeling trapped some years ago. We are all now working all around the world. Do you sometimes feel like you are living outside of real life? All the time. Next to this theatre, before our opening night, there was an incident, an attack and somebody got seriously injured and police cordoned off the area. I was passing by and couldn't help thinking that my job is like somebody who is arranging flowers when the world around him is falling apart. In the UK, the Arts Council is funding artists who apply for their projects, workshops, etc. Is this something you think Greek artists need? The state funding scheme restarted recently and this is very good. Many groups, not ours obviously, have received funding for their projects. We are waiting to see the outcome of this opportunity. Do you believe you have influenced other artists with your work? It's better to ask them! There have been more than two generations of dancers who have worked with me. If I helped them in any sense I would like them to say it themselves. More than anything else I want them to remember me as a collaborator and not as a mentor. Would you teach you craft? Or is it too early to ask? Even though I'm old enough now, I don't feel I really have some sort of special technique that I can teach to others. I'm not so confident. What I can do, is lead people through a creative process; through this process I discover myself and I can share. But if you remove the target, which is the performance, I lose everything. So we should be expecting more performances? Some days I feel I'm only starting. It's ridiculous, but this is how I feel. I'm bombarded by ideas and thoughts awaiting for the time to come out and at the same moment I'm empty and stressed about what to do next. How do you overcome the fear of the blank page? I know it is part of the game. It's the carrot, the stick, everything that can put you back into the creative process. You have to work, there is no other way. Dimitris Papaioannou. PHOTO: PINABAUSCH.DE/MILTOS ATHANASIOU 'The Great Tamer' will be staged at The Perth Festival from 8-12 February, 2019. Tickets from $36 - $75 + BF. To book, visit https://www.perthfestival.com. au/event/the-great-tamer The audience can expect macabre still lifes, dreamlike images and nightmarish creations brought to life with 10 performers.
27 October 2018
10 November 2018