‘The Fig Tree Replanted’ is set to be showcasing a host of world-class Australian performers from Greek, Jewish, Italian and other backgrounds in a special live concert.
Two shows of music and storytelling will be performed live in front of a seated audience in the idyllic gardens of Melbourne’s historic Hellenic Museum, as well as streamed online for the world, in February 2021.
The concert is a reinterpretation of The Fig Tree, one of The Boite’s most successful artistic productions in its 40-year history. In The Fig Tree (Text, 2002) Zable recounts moving stories of his Jewish ancestors’ journeys to Australia from Eastern Europe and of his partner Dora’s family from the Greek island of Ithaca. It is a celebration of these journeys and a reflection of the hardships of those who undertook them.
“We are a nation of Indigenous peoples and immigrants, a new world with an ancient past, a land of many melodies,” said Arnold Zable.
“The Fig Tree project is an exploration of displacement and belonging, through the beauty of story and song, performed on the lands of the Wurundjeri people, in search of that place where we can all meet.”
Many of the world-class musicians who starred in the original line-up, including ARIA winners Kavisha Mazzella and Irine Vela, Anthea Sidiropoulos, Klezmania’s Freydi Mrocki, David Krycer and Lionel Mrocki, Jacob Papadopoulos and Klezmeritis’ Ernie Gruner and Phil Carroll, will reprise their live performances, rearranged from the original works.
Other leading Australian world-music artists including Achilles Yiangoulli and Eugene Belenko will take to the stage in place of several musicians no longer with us, including Costas Tsicaderis, Spiro Papoutsis and David Breytman. The new show is dedicated to the late trio.
The Boite managing director Eyal Chipkiewicz said the partnership with Kadimah and the Hellenic Museum was a fantastic opportunity to use the power of the arts to establish cross- community links and collaborate to bring together artists and audiences from multiple backgrounds.
“These Australian musicians from Greek, Jewish, Italian and other backgrounds will share the stage, collaborating cross-culturally,’’ he said.
“In doing so, they bring to life the power of diversity and reflect the role of migration in shaping Melbourne’s cultural and social identity.’’
The event will take place at the 2014 MPavillion, now housed in the gardens at the Hellenic Museum, an architecturally prized structure inspired by Classical Greek design and outback sheds, helping to highlight the significance of migration in the greater Australian identity of today.
“We are delighted to co-host The Fig Tree Replanted, an event that not only celebrates our rich cross-cultural connections but shares stories that both resonate with us and remain relevant today,” said Hellenic Museum CEO Sarah Craig.