New start at Theatro Technis

The high-caliber theater group Theatro Technis is set to launch into the new season with new collaborations and a fresh approach, just months after the death of key component Mimis Kouyioumtzis. New productions, repeats, a two-day tribute to the late composer Manos Hadjidakis, as well as a musical cabaret, are just some of the events on the theater group’s program which begins tomorrow with «Women at the Sea» by Panayiotis Mentis. «We had a difficult year» were the first words uttered by Giorgos Lazanis, director and head of Theatro Technis, at a recent news conference ahead of tomorrow’s opening night. Lazanis is expected to meet with Culture Minister Evangelos Venizelos within the next few days to discuss state financial and legal matters concerning the theater. Mentis, the opening production’s playwright, who attended the news conference, offered insight into his «Women at the Sea.» «Stories that move us have to do with the meeting of a man and a woman,» Mentis said of his play, which tells the tale of an arts journalist’s love for a lifesaver based on a Greek island. Between the two lies a previous love affair and the man’s mother, all of which serves to confront three women with their female nature, social restrictions, insecurity, and the need for love. «There are many elements in identity. There cannot be any women who have not experienced, or have not imagined themselves experiencing similar situations,» said Dimitra Hatoupi, the play’s lead actress. She is joined by Paschalis Tsarouhas, Maria Constandarou, and Maria Michail. Costis Kapelonis directed the play and Christos Leontis wrote the music. Performances of Ronald Harwood’s «Personal Potter,» which was successfully staged last season at the theater group’s Basement stage, begin on October 23. It will be followed, at the end of the month, by a children’s play by Kouyioumtzis, «Once Upon a Minute,» at the theater’s Frynichou stage, in the capital’s Plaka district. The theater’s musical cabaret production, currently being prepared by Thodoros Grapsas, will premiere on December 11. In the new year, Theatro Technis will present Sam Shepard’s «True West,» an intense dramatization of the relationship between two brothers. The production has been timed to begin on February 14, in remembrance of the theater’s founder, Karolos Koun, who died on that day 16 years ago. To be directed by Dimitris Mavrikios, Shepard’s play will star Yiannis Kotsifas, Nikos Karathanos, and, possibly, Aleka Paizi, whose involvement in the project has not been confirmed. A tribute to Hadjidakis, titled «Manos Hadjidakis and the Theatro Technis,» is currently being prepared by Philippos Tsalahouris and Athanassia Karayiannopoulou, but its performance dates have not been announced. The production will include students from the theater’s drama school. Further on, next summer Theatro Techni is planning to present a collage of excerpts from various plays by Aristophanes.