By Argyro Vourdoumpa and Andriana Simos.
Two of Greece’s most renowned performers, Dimitris Basis and Giorgos Tsalikis, graced Australian shores this month for a number of concerts in Adelaide, Sydney and Canberra.
Just this past weekend, Basis performed at Adelaide’s Town Hall, while Tsalikis visited Sydney and then travelled to Canberra for sold-out performances.
Here’s how both events went down:
Hundreds of spectators gathered at Adelaide’s Town Hall on Friday, May 28, for a sold-out concert dedicated to the 200th anniversary of the Greek War of Independence.
Presented by the Greek Orthodox Community of SA (GOCSA) the performance, which was under the auspices of the Greece 2021 Committee, featured singer Dimitris Basis accompanied by a symphony orchestra and a Greek band under the direction of conductor George Ellis, who once more impressed the crowd with his energy.
The musicians performed songs of liberation by legendary Greek composers Vasilis Tsitsanis, Manos Hatzidakis, Stavros Xarchakos and Mikis Theodorakis in a two-hour concert that kept the audience entertained.
The event kicked off with speeches from GOCSA President Bill Gonis and Secretary General Panagiotis Ppyros, who highlighted the importance of community events as a means to keep the Greek language and culture alive for the generations to come.
In his brief speech, Dimitris Basis thanked the crowd for their walm welcome in the South Australian capital before he went on to also thank the organisers and sponsors.
“With a 15-months long lockdown in Greece and cultural events that have gone silent, I haven’t had the chance to sing in front of an audience for more than a year and I thank you all for giving me the opportunity to sing here, tonight,” said the singer and wished for the Greek communities around Australia to keep up the great work.
After the concert, a dinner was hosted at the Cyprus Community of SA.
Sydney and Canberra:
Elsewhere in Sydney and Canberra, Giorgios Tsalikis sang his most popular songs to packed-out crowds at The Bellevue Venue and The Hellenic Club of Canberra.
In Sydney, Greeks of all ages were seen dancing on tables and singing to their hearts content, as Tsalikis made his way through the throng of people and interacted with everyone he saw.
To show their appreciation of his performance, people also showered Tsalikis with flower petals, ultimately covering the whole stage.
It was a similar story in Canberra at the Hellenic Club where about 420 people gathered to watch Tsalikis perform.
The capital city wasn’t originally on the Greek singer’s tour plan, but with a bit of encouragement from the President of the Greek Orthodox Community & Church of Canberra, John Loukadellis, the performance was made possible.
And what a performance it was. Mr Loukadellis tells The Greek Herald the vibe on the night was “electric” and that it made people feel as though they were in Greece.
“Everyone was drinking, eating and dancing. It was electric. People needed this night out and his show was amazing,” Mr Loukadellis tells The Greek Herald.
Rave reviews all round for both the Basis and Tsalikis concerts!