STAVROS NIARCHOS FOUNDATION
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The Greek National Opera will be bringing the hope of a sunlit morning, the brilliance of a clear blue sky, the sweet scent of a flower in bloom to us and to the stage throughout the first seven months of 2022. Our wholehearted wish is to leave darkness and clouds, sad faces and silenced mouths far behind and to turn our eyes instead towards a new year filled with the brightest of sunshine, the broadest of smiles, and wide-open arms. Our productions are like a dip in calm and hopeful waters, a wander through a dense forest, a long gaze out to sea. Just as nature has that unique ability to bring people a sense of calm, to recentre us, so art is here to re-establish our priorities – to illuminate our values and draw focus back to life itself.
From January through to July 2022, at the Stavros Niarchos Hall and the Odeon of Herodes Atticus, the Greek National Opera will be presenting five of the most important operas in the international repertoire –by Umberto Giordano, Charles Gounod, Giuseppe Verdi, and Giacomo Puccini– alongside a new opera by Angelos Triantafyllou dedicated to older adulthood, a contemporary dance triptych made up of choreographies by Konstantinos Rigos, Jiří Kylián, and Ohad Naharin, an oratorio commissioned by the GNO from Turkish artists, an installation centred on a new film by Yorgos Lanthimos, and a concert performance of The Songs of Struggle by Mikis Theodorakis, which forms part of a three-year tribute cycle to the composer. This January-to-July programme is made possible by a grant from the Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF) [www.SNF.org] to both enhance the Greek National Opera’s artistic outreach, and present a tribute programme to the bicentennial of the Greek Revolution.
Major conductors, leading directors, eminent choreographers, and internationally acclaimed star soloists all feature prominently in the Greek National Opera’s new programme for the second half of the 2021/22 artistic season. Robert Wilson is conjuring a striking Otello – a major co-production between the Greek National Opera and the Festspiel Baden-Baden. Yorgos Lanthimos presents his highly anticipated new film Bleat, starring Emma Stone and Damien Bonnard, as part of the GNO and NEON programme The Artist on the Composer. The Artistic Director of the Athens Epidaurus Festival, Katerina Evangelatos, is preparing an ambitious new production of Rigoletto to be presented at the Odeon of Herodes Atticus. Nikos Petropoulos, Renato Zanella, and Hugo de Ana will be bringing us revivals of Andrea Chénier, Faust,, and Tosca respectively. And the great Nikos Karathanos is directing a brand-new opera, Inland.
Internationally acclaimed soloists who have all performed major roles at the world’s leading opera houses –Marcelo Álvarez, Marcelo Puente, Eva-Maria Westbroek, Aleksandrs Antoņenko, Ivan Magrì, Irina Lungu, Kristīne Opolais, Ramón Vargas, and Giorgio Berrugi– will be joined on stage by the GNO’s foremost Greek soloists of global renown, including Dimitri Platanias, Cellia Costea, Tassis Christoyannis, Dionysios Sourbis, Dimitris Paksoglou, Vassiliki Karayanni, Yannis Christopoulos, Yanni Yannissis, Tassos Apostolou, Petros Magoulas, Dimitris Tiliakos, Christina Poulitsi, and Mary-Ellen Nesi.
These productions are being conducted by Philippe Auguin, Stathis Soulis, Nicolas Vassiliou, Lukas Karytinos, Elias Voudouris, Pierre Dumoussaud, and Miltos Logiadis.
And the dancers of the GNO Ballet will be performing choreographies by two leading lights of the contemporary dance scene, Jiří Kylián and Ohad Naharin.
The Artistic Director of the Greek National Opera, Giorgos Koumendakis, notes:
“Slowly but surely, the Greek National Opera is returning to the full breadth and scope of its artistic programming, offering up art in all its hope and joy with a view to leaving recent difficult times –marked by isolation, loneliness, and fear– far behind. Though the pressures of the pandemic are still with us, the Greek National Opera is pressing on through the second half of its 2021/22 season, presenting a full artistic programme at the Stavros Niarchos Hall and at the Odeon of Herodes Atticus, with major world premieres, such as the highly anticipated new film by Yorgos Lanthimos, produced in partnership with NEON, and the opera Inland by Angelos Triantafyllou, and co-productions, such as Verdi’s Otello directed by Robert Wilson, staged in collaboration with the Festspiel Baden-Baden.
Furthermore, following a short delay due to the pandemic, this March will see the performance of a major work commissioned by the GNO from the Turkish composer Kamran Ince, the oratorio Jus soli, presented as part of our tribute programme to the bicentennial of the Greek Revolution. It is a work that attempts to distil the sea that divides and unites two peoples into a symbol of peace and understanding.
Andrea Chénier, originally scheduled to be presented in 2021, is also coming to the Stavros Niarchos Hall in January 2022, where another revival, this time from 2012, Gounod’s Faust, will be taking to the stage in April.
Our three-year tribute cycle to Mikis Theodorakis continues this March with his Songs of Struggle, while in January we will be presenting a concert featuring the winning works of the Opera Composition Competition titled 1821, the Greek Revolution and Poetry Set to Music, organised in partnership with the Greek Composers’ Union.
Last but not least, the GNO Ballet will be presenting a triptych of contemporary dance works, where a new choreography by our Ballet Director Konstantinos Rigos will enter into dialogue with choreographies created by two leading figures of the contemporary dance scene, Jiří Kylián and Ohad Naharin.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank: the Hellenic Ministry of Culture and Sports, and its Minister – Ms. Lina Mendoni – for their substantive and steadfast support; the Stavros Niarchos Foundation, and the Co-President of its Board of Directors – Mr. Andreas Dracopoulos – for their major support, and very considerable grants that have both helped grow the Greek National Opera’s renown around the world and allowed us to create our 2021 tribute programme; and all our vital private sponsors and supporters. Warm thanks also go to the friends of Greek National Opera, who have stood by us over these last two trying years, and of course to our organisation’s associates and staff, for all their dedication and talent, creativity and hard work.”
• Tickets for January, February, and March 2022 events can be booked in advance from Monday, 13 December 2021 via the GNO Box Office and ticketservices.gr/en
• Tickets for April, May, June, and July 2022 events can be booked in advance from Monday, 7 March 2022 via the GNO Box Office and ticketservices.gr/en
• Tickets for events at the Odeon of Herodes Atticus will be available to book once the Athens Epidaurus Festival launches its ticket sales in the spring of 2022