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Athens Hoteliers Launch Cultural Action, Free Theatrical Performances

Greek Tourism Minister Elena Kountoura (R) looks on as young actors recite an excerpt from Homer's "Odyssey" in the garden of the National Archaeological Museum in Athens.

Greek Tourism Minister Elena Kountoura (R) looks on as young actors recite an excerpt from Homer’s “Odyssey” in the garden of the National Archaeological Museum in Athens.

By Nikos Krinis

Theatrical performances of the works of great writers of Greek antiquity will take place free of charge at select archaeological sites and monuments of Athens, the Athens – Attica & Argosaronic Hotel Association announced on Tuesday.

The association’s cultural action, dubbed “The Stones Speak”, will introduce world-class Greek texts — of the poet Homer, the philosophers Plato and Aristotle, the historian Thucydides and the playwrights Sophocles and Aristophanes — to the contemporary audience through an entertaining and educational experience. The performances will be carried out by young and talented actors who will recite excerpts of great ancient Greek works and present them to the audience in a simple and understandable manner.

Through the initiative, the Greek capital’s hoteliers association aims to introduce the visitors of Athens to the ancient Greek writings and at the same time showcase the city’s renowned archaeological sites and monuments.

Athens - Attica & Argosaronic Hotel Association President Alexandros Vassilikos

Athens – Attica & Argosaronic Hotel Association President Alexandros Vassilikos

“This action is as an offer of Attica’s hoteliers to the destination as we consider it our obligation to connect tourism and culture in a modern way,” the association’s president, Alexandros Vassilikos, said while presenting the initiative at an event at the National Archaeological Museum in the city center.

“This is an action that evolves the identity of the destination and further develops the city break tourism form,” Vassilikos added.

The theatrical performances will take place every day (11.00-13.00 & 17.00-19.00) in three languages — Greek, English and French — from September 10 to October 10. Admission is free.

Vassilikos said that the association aims for “The Stones Speak” initiative to become an established cultural action for the city of Athens.

“We want to show that the close relationship between tourism and culture, especially for the city of Athens, does not only have a glorious past, but it continues in the present and certainly must have a future,” he said.

Ioanna Papadopoulou, Communications and Marketing Director of Athens International Airport; Maria Logotheti, Chairman of the Athens Development & Destination Management Agency (EATA); Maria Lagogianni, Director of the National Archaeological Museum; President of the Athens - Attica & Argosaronic Hotel Association, Alexandros Vassilikos; Greek Minister of Tourism, Elena Kountoura; and Roula Saloutsi, Public Relations Director of Aegean Airlines.

Ioanna Papadopoulou, Communications and Marketing Director of Athens International Airport; Maria Logotheti, Chairman of the Athens Development & Destination Management Agency (EATA); Maria Lagogianni, Director of the National Archaeological Museum; President of the Athens – Attica & Argosaronic Hotel Association, Alexandros Vassilikos; Greek Minister of Tourism, Elena Kountoura; and Roula Saloutsi, Public Relations Director of Aegean Airlines.

On her part, Tourism Minister Elena Kountoura underlined that cultural tourism, as well as city tourism, are dynamic tourism forms promoted by the ministry. “The Tourism Ministry and the Greek National Tourism Organization encourage and support such actions that greatly enhance the historical wealth and cultural heritage of Athens and enrich the visitors’ overall travel experience,” she said.

Young Greek actors reciting an excerpt from Homer's "Odyssey".

Young Greek actors reciting an excerpt from Homer’s “Odyssey”.

The cultural action “The Stones Speak” will be carried out with the cooperation of the Tourism Ministry and the contribution of the Culture Ministry and held under the auspices of the Region of Attica, the Municipality of Athens and Athens Culture Net. Greek airline AEGEAN and Athens International Airport (AIA) are main supporters of the initiative.

Further information can be found here.


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