CULTURE

A Greek abroad

Born in Greece, Loukos was an architect student at the School of Fine Arts in Paris, when he took his first dance class under Boris Kniasef and Raymond Franchetti. Offered a contract by Roland Petit a year later, in the Casino de Paris, he remained there for two years. Following up that stint, he joined the Theatre de Silence in Paris, performing in neoclassical and modern works, including choreographies by Maurice Bejart, Jacques Garnier and Brigitte Lefevre. He then joined the Zurich Opera Ballet for one year. Back in France, Loukos returned to Petit’s National Ballet of Marseilles, initially as a dancer, and then as ballet master and assistant to Petit. In 1984, Loukos worked on the 100th Anniversary Gala of the Metropolitan Opera in New York and also taught movement to the cast of Robert Wilson’s «Medea,» back at the Lyon Opera. The same year, he was appointed associate director of the Lyon Opera Ballet, subsequently becoming co-director alongside Francoise Adret in 1988. Following Adret’s retirement in 1990, Loukos became the company’s artistic director. Since then, he has been credited with developing the troupe’s modern repertoire, by inviting top chorographers such as William Forsythe, Mats Ek and Christopher Bruce, to work with the company, while commissioning works from Lucinda Childs and Karol Armitage, Stephen Petronio, Tero Saarinen and Jiri Kylian, among others. Beyond his dedication to the Lyon Opera Ballet, Loukos is the artistic director of the International Dance Festival in Cannes, a position he has held since 1992. He was named Chevalier of the National Order of Arts and Letters by the French Ministry of Culture in 1994.