The Pappas Post is proud to announce its media sponsorship of an upcoming, inaugural event spanning three continents and celebrating Greece and its people, history and art at a new level.
Greek Fringe 2020 is a creative digital effort involving five cities — Sydney, Melbourne, Nicosia, New York and Athens. The event will attract diverse talent and seeks to promote and celebrate contemporary Greek culture, which can often be overshadowed by a glorified notion of the past.
Using the slogan “Claiming the now,” Greek Fringe will shift beyond the folkloric representation of migration to explore the modern Greek diaspora and dynamic arts scene of mother Greece, which has emerged as a hub of creativity and innovation due to a financial crisis.
This year’s digital event brings together two award-winning creative forces — the strikingly original Amalgamation Project of Cyprus and prophetic poet and rapper Luka Lesson of Australia.
Both of these artists have pushed boundaries within their own fields, and Greek Fringe will take it a step further by merging art forms and continents in a digital presentation that lays claim to the now.
The live event premiere will begin on Friday, August 28 at 8:30pm Australian Eastern Standard Time, or 1:30pm Eastern European Summer Time (Greece/Cyprus) and 6:30am Eastern Standard Time (New York City).
About the artists
Created by Vasiliki Anastasiou, the Amalgamation Project’s heart centers around her original compositions and Ermis Michail’s arrangements. It borrows and re-arranges traditional melodies from countries around the shores of the Mediterranean Sea as well as the whole of the Balkan peninsula. Vasiliki invites guest musicians from different backgrounds — usually jazz, classical and folk — to share musical thoughts and experiment with the blend. Their repertoire includes polyphonic adaptations of traditional music through a modern approach.
Luka Lesson is a poet and rapper whose work engages with the Greek mythology of his family homeland, the fiercely political and the vulnerably self-reflective. Luka has performed with the Queensland Symphony Orchestra, released his own musical albums and books, and has been published in a number of international poetry collections. Luka Lesson has always used education-based programs as a means for social change both within Australia and abroad, and his work is currently being studied in English departments across the country. Luka Lesson also runs his own poetry retreat in his grandfather’s village on the island of Rhodes, Greece every year. Luka’s latest solo work, entitled “Agapi & Other Kinds of Love” will premiere in 2020.
The creative minds behind the event
Greek Fringe is the brainchild of Melbourne and Sydney-based musicians and event producers Christina Bacchiella and Con Kalamaras. The duo worked together on the Melbourne Rebetiko Festival and have since co-produced various online vocal workshops with singers from Greece and Cyprus.
Kalamaras and Bacchiella originally planned on hosting their inaugural event in-person, but due to the COVID-19 pandemic they were forced to pivot to a digital format
“We see the need for us to adapt and use the technology at hand as a great opportunity – a shrinking of the world where physical boundaries are no longer prohibitive,” Kalamaras said. “We can feature anyone, anywhere in a digital capacity and this is one positive that has come from the tricky situation we find ourselves in.”
Kalamaras said the event is critical in keeping up with Greece’s modern art scene and diaspora culture.
“As humans evolve, so too does language, culture and influence,” he said. “If we don’t engage with the evolving artscape of Greece and communities abroad, the risk is that Greek culture becomes stagnant and obsolete.”
Bacchiella said Greek Fringe intends to appeal to all people who appreciate modern art and culture — regardless of their heritage.
“Greek Fringe is all about unveiling independent artists who are not afforded the attention they deserve,” she said. “Our mission is to curate events that do just that.”
To support the event: https://www.patreon.com/greekfringefest