Unley High School in South Australia goes Greek to celebrate National Day

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Unley High School (UHS) hosted a souvlaki sizzle on Thursday, March 24 to celebrate Greek Independence Day this year.

The event was organised with the help of the School’s Greek Parents Committee and was held during lunch time at a newly renovated outdoor space on school grounds.

The day began with a speech explaining the significance of March 25, 1821 to the audience.

Later, Greek Dance Captains, Stella Dracopoulos and Theo Leonardos, led students to perform in two groups. The first group danced a Tik, whilst the second danced a Pentozali. All audience members were then encouraged to join in and dance the Zorba.

After the event, the School Principal at UHS, Greg Rolton, told The Greek Herald the annual souvlaki sizzle was a ‘wonderful celebration with food and dance supported by the wider school community.’

“It was also fantastic to see the inclusive interaction of our student dancers inviting friends and teachers to join in the dance, making it a truly multicultural event,” Mr Rolton added.

Chairperson of the Greek Parents Committee, Ourania Ntafillis, agreed with Mr Rolton and said the event was “a heart-warming experience.”

“The UHS Greek Parents’ Committee has been in existence for over 30 years and we strive to support and promote Greek language and culture,” Ms Ntafillis says.

“Our annual “Souvlaki Sizzle” to commemorate Greek Independence Day was a heart-warming experience. The school came alive as volunteers prepared the BBQ while the staff and students came together and put on a wonderful display of decorations and performances.”

For Mr Leonardos, he said he was proud to be Greek Dance Captain on the day.

“…being given the opportunity to represent a group of high school students to show the school the importance and beauty of our [Greek] heritage, is something I will admire my whole life,” Mr Leonardos said.

“I exceptionally loved the Zorba where we would bring friends and teachers in the audience onto the dance floor to dance with us.”

Modern Greek Teacher at UHS, Lazaros Gialamas, added that the annual ‘souvlaki sizzle’ is a ‘perfect example’ of promoting Greek language and culture.

“The School has been long been a stalwart for promoting and preserving Greek language and culture amongst the youth of South Australia. The Independence Day dance performance is a perfect example, being a student led initiative that invites students of all backgrounds and welcomes them as honorary Philhellenes,” Mr Gialamas said.

“This is a wonderful tribute to the importance of Languages Education in fostering our multicultural community.”

The School is now looking forward to holding its annual Greek dinner which was cancelled the last two years due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

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