Chorus Work With Georgia

I met Georgia Tsangaraki, on a stormy rainy night in Mikro Papingo, as I was waiting to meet “The Goat Man”, no really. The clouds had finally split and the rain was pouring. Here I am in Dias Bed and Breakfast coffee in hand, and now, nowhere to go, and a voice calls to me, “come sit with us”. I look up to find this beautiful woman Georgia, along with her husband and daughter.
Greetings were exchanged, and I realize that she is the next Guest Artist, and will be running the workshop on Chorus. Perfect, as this is my topic of discussion for the OYL Blog. I believe they call that, serendipity.
She asked how things were going, about my experience thus far, and where the Apprentice Company was in our process of devising new work based on the The Life of Galileo. She was full of questions and curiosity, and I was excited to share. Unknowingly, during our discussion, I was further developing my own personal relationship with the text. It’s one thing to read a play, and know the plot, plot structure, and general summary. It’s something completely different, to discover and explore one’s own personal relationship to a text.
The discussion ensues, Who You Are, vs What You Do! How does one define themselves? The separation between work and art. Are they separate? Is one willing to give their life for their work? Is it a new “thing” to distinguish who you are, vs what you do?
It was an amazing conversation, not only with Georgia but with her husband, Haris who is an artist as well. I left the conversation, feeling excited about the weeks ahead and the collaboration that we will be doing with her. Georgia is a performer with the National Theater of Greece and will be guiding workshops on Chorus. Chorus, in Classical Greek drama was a group of actors who described and commented upon the main action of a play with song, dance, and recitation. (2) a homogeneous, non-individualized group of performers, who comment with a collective voice on the dramatic action. Greek tragedy had its beginnings in choral performances, in which a group of 50 men danced and sang dithyrambs—lyric hymns in praise of the god Dionysus. IMG_8327
So the work begins…
For me, good theater, a good play, and a good educator ask questions. Rarely do they have the answer, but they ask the question; with an openness and curiosity to say lets, figure it out together. That’s Georgia, and that’s Chorus Work. We are singular individuals operating in a group, trying to figure it out individually yet, simultaneously together. How do you do that? How do you teach that? How do you create a group with many individuals?
I don’t know the answers, but it’s exactly what we are exploring.

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