Joint celebration for Hellenic Festival and Epidaurus Festival 50th anniversary this year

Over the last two years, the Greek Actors Union has begun reviving «Actor’s Day.» In light of this, the association is holding a celebration at the Herod Atticus Theater tonight at 8 p.m. The event commemorates 50 years since the establishment of the Festival of Ancient Drama in Epidaurus in 1954 and the establishment of the Athens Festival a year later. At the union’s first event, which took place at the Acropol Theater, the association paid tribute to a number of leading personalities of Greek theater, among them Vassilis Avlonitis, Antonis Yiannidis, Christos Efthymiou, Christina Kalogerikou, Christoforos Nezer and Katina Paxinou. Last year, honored thespians included Anna Kalouta, Vasso Manolidou, Aleka Paizi, Anna Synodinou, Alekos Alexandrakis, Lykourgos Kallergis and Giorgos Lazanis. This year, the celebration’s revival focuses on the translators, the directors, the musicians, the costume and set designers and the choreographers, all those who work closely with the actors, but do so behind the scenes. They will all be honored for their contribution to staging and producing performances. At the Herod Atticus Theater, the tribute includes three to five minute excerpts from ancient drama and comedy works. The 65-member ERT Contemporary Music Orchestra, conducted by Andreas Pylarinos, will interpret works by Greek composers. Collaborating in the production is theater specialist and critic Costas Georgousopoulos; the project’s coordination was undertaken by director Spyros Evangelatos. Excerpts will be read by Antigone Valakou, Antonis Theodorakopoulos, Christos Kalavrouzos, Thymios Karakatsanis, Costas Kastanas, Filareti Komninou, Eva Kotamanidou, Anna Synodinou, Nikitas Tsakiroglou and Leda Tassopoulou. The event is sponsored by the Ministry of Culture, the Athens Municipality, the Hellenic Festival, ERT, the National Theater, The State Theater of Northern Greece, the Art Theater and the Theater Museum. Last year’s tribute turned into a lively celebration of Greek theater and the arts in general, attracting an audience of over 3,500 people.