Tag Archives: HFC–Odessa

Ode to the Sea – Odessa

Hellenic Foundation for Culture in Odessa
Ode to the Sea, art exhibition opening March 24, 2016

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Tsitsanis Exhibition – Odessa

100 years from the date of birth of Vassilis Tsitsanis (1915-1984)
Exhibition
Opening October 15, 2015 at 16:00 – till November 19
Hellenic Foundation for Culture – Odessa

w5DkPX9YuP2wV-rkj2TFSLlVAkMuQfO-rUoFy-mPfp0In memory of Vasilis Tsitsanis on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of his birth, HFC–Odessa presents an exhibition about the renowned singer and composer, poet and bouzouki player, who is considered a “father” of contemporary Greek music. The opening will feature a live performance of Tsitsanis’ songs and the presentation of the catalogue of the exhibition.

Vassilis Tsitsanis was born to the family of shoemaker Konstantinos Tsitsanis and Viktoria Lazou (both from Epirus) in the town of Trikala on January 18, 1915. He was the eighth child of 14 children in the family. Only four children survived, and Vassilis was named after the diseased firstborn. His father had a mandolin, which he used to play almost exclusively Klephtic songs from his birthplace, Epirus. For little Vassilis these songs, together with Byzantine chant of the church, were the first melodies he heard.

At 11 years of age Vassilis played a mandolin, which a local craftsman would later make over into a bouzouki. While studying in a gymnasium, he took violin lessons, but it was the bouzouki that increasingly drew his interest. Originally, bouzouki was a musical instrument associated with lawlessness and prison, while the violin, as an instrument of the European orchestra, on the contrary, symbolized the “good society”.

When the time came to make his choice, Tsitsanis put the violin aside and took up the bouzouki. The choice of bouzouki was the acknowledgement of identity and class integration as well as solidarity with the poor family of his childhood. Due to his skill, help from good people and some luck, he managed not only to overcome the stigma of the bouzouki and ennoble the despised instrument, but also to take a leading position in the musical culture of his homeland.

In his artistic career Vassilis Tsitsanis was a continuer and reformer of the Rebetiko, which synthesized various traditions of Greek folklore, oriental music in its Greek (Smyrnean) version, Greek-Orthodox chant and Western popular music.

It can be said that Tsitsanis helped the Rebetiko out of the marginal underground environment and turned it into the nationwide popular music, the so-called “laïkó,” which has endured and continued to develop into the present.

At the opening of the exhibition the songs of Vassilis Tsitsanis will be performed by a soloist from the regional Philharmonic Society and a laureate of international contests Aglaia Polychronidi and the Folk Orchestra from Odessa National Music Academy (directed by the Honored Artist of Ukraine Oleksandr Oliynyk).

The event is sponsored by Hephaestus Construction Company.

Odessa Jazz Fest 2015

Dimos Dimitriadis Quartet, with the support of HFC–Odessa, will participate in Odessa Jazz Fest 2015. The quartet will perform September 19, 2015 at 19:00 in the Grand Hall of  Odessa Philharmonic Society (15 Bunina Street). The event is sponsored by Mr. P. Bumburas of the Construction Company Gefest.

The complete program of the concert that will take place in the Philharmonic Society from 18:00 till 22:00 on September 19 features the following performances:

Big-Band (dir. E. Golovashin, Ukraine), 18:00-19:00.
Dimos Dimitriadis Quartet (Greece), 19:00-20:00.
Sharon Clark and the Chris Grasso Trio (USA), 20:00-21:00.
Authentic Light Orchestra (Armenia – Switzerland), 21:00-22:00.

Dimos Dimitriadis, one of the most skilled and respected jazz musicians in Greece, studied jazz at Berklee College of Music. Continue reading Odessa Jazz Fest 2015

6th Silent Film Festival of Odessa

HFC–Odessa participates in the 6th Silent Film Festival of Odessa, with the screening of the Greek film Social Decay, by Stelios Tatasopoulos, from 1932. The screening will be accompanied by live music performed by Yuri Kouznetsov.

22-23 August.

Historical Context
In 1932 Tatasopoulos made Social Decay, a film that heralded the era of neo-realism and the first film in Greece to attempt social criticism in a realistic setting ,within the framework of the working class at a time of severe censorship. Continue reading 6th Silent Film Festival of Odessa

Kostis Palamas – exhibition and lecture in Odessa

UPDATE: HFC-Odessa had a wonderful turnout both days, for the opening and for the lecture by Valentina Silantieva the next day.

May 21 and 22, 16:00 both days.
Hellenic Foundation for Culture – Odessa

May 21: The exhibition about Kostis Palamas opens with a program of poetry and music. Students from Odessa University, who are studying Greek, will read selected poems by Palamas in Greek and in Russian. Students from the Odessa Music School N3 will perform the Olympic Hymn, and soprano Aglaïa Polychronidou will sing Palamas poems that have been set to music, accompanied by piano.

May 22: Valentina Silantieva, professor  of literature and director of the foreign literature department at the University of Odessa, will give a lecture  entitled “The work of Kostis Palamas in the European Tradition.”

Continue reading Kostis Palamas – exhibition and lecture in Odessa