CULTURE

‘Medea (2)’ anticipation builds

«If you don’t like what we do, it will be entirely our fault.» Thus spoke Dimitris Papaioannou on stage at the Pallas Theater as he stood in front of the sets for «Medea (2)» during a press conference earlier this week. It was one of his rare public appearances and comes almost a week before the much-awaited opening of the production, which premieres on October 3. «The first 20 performances are sold out and we have an extension for another 20,» said Papaioannou. Fifteen years have passed since the first staging of his take on «Medea,» in what was probably the most inspired moment in the career of Papaioannou’s Omada Edafous dance company. A lot has changed since then. A few months ago, in a joint collaboration with the Athens Festival, Papaioannou presented his new «Medea (2)» at the festival’s Pireos Street venue. It was a new challenge and those who managed to see one of the five unique – and sold-out – performances had much to say about its new and rather different structure. Back then, Papaioannou had said that he wanted to take another look at his past successful undertaking and work on it once more. At the press conference, he had yet another surprise. «You won’t see exactly the same performance you viewed in the summer.» He explained that that made sense, since «all the actors and dancers are more mature, although I can’t say the same thing for me.» There was a sweet feeling of expectation in the air, as Papaioannou praised and thanked the people he worked with, each separately, using the kindest words. Vangelio Randou, the fragile yet also powerful-looking woman who plays the title role, drew all the attention when Papaioannou suggested the audience ought to fall in love with her, just as he had. «It was a painful but at the same time amazing experience,» said Randou when journalists asked her how she felt about playing Medea and working with Papaioannou. «What I found difficult was to manage to do everything Dimitris wanted me to do without losing my personal style.» The sets are designed by Nikos Alexiou, while the sound (a patchwork of Bellini operas) was conceived by Coti K, who has «wired» both sets and dancers, hence transforming all interpretations and stage movements into a singular sound and musical activity. The costumes are by newcomer Thanassis Papastergiou, who worked on Papaioannou’s old sketches, while the lighting has been undertaken by Alekos Yiannaros. For ticket information, contact the Pallas Theater box office (5 Voukourestiou, tel 210.321.3100, open 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Mondays to Saturdays as well as noon to 8 p.m. Sundays), Public in Syntagma, Fnac stores, or call 210.810.8181 or visit www.ellthea.gr.