For the first time in its millenia-long history, the Temple of Epicurean Apollo in the Peloponnese will serve as a stage for an all-night, experiential performance to be held under the light of the full moon. The event, entitled “ From Darkness to Light” and designed by choreographer Apostolia Papadamaki as part of the “ Sleep and Dream Performance Series”, will take place overnight on July 28-29.
“ The entire space is sacred, wherever you stand you can feel its energy,” Papadamaki noted in a press conference on Wednesday. “ If this performance succeeds in doing something, this will be very moving and a connection to the place, the monument and the human condition, to what it means to do something together, to share something with others.”
During the presentation, journalists were invited to put on sleeping masks and listen to the dreams of audience members, read out by Papadamaki to a soundtrack that was composed specifically for ‘Darkness to Light’ by award-winning musician and composer Tryfonas Koutsourelis.
The “ Sleep and Dream Performance Series” has been presented several times, at several venues since 2014, but this is the first time that it will be held outdoors, at the Temple of Apollo in Figaleia, on the borders between Ilia, Arcadia and Messinia at an altitude of 1,130 metres.
“ I’m interested in finding another way for us to relate to art, whether that is a painting or a temple. Because our phone and computer screens make us skim over things very quickly, the rest of our senses have atrophied. We cannot look at art only as spectators and quickly. We must experience it in order to be able to change ourselves, our society, to become better people and together live a better life,” Papadamaki said.
The all-night performance will seek to explore our relationship to light and darkness, of performing action with sleep, dreams and imagination through dance, music and song. Accompanied by Koutsourelis’ 12-hour site-specific sound installation, the dancers, musicians and audience will create a network of communication and expression under the stars, working with archetypal themes that have followed humanity since the dawn of time.
For those wishing to take part, the event begins at 20:00 on July 28 and it is best to wear comfortable shoes and clothes, since it involves a lot of walking and spreads over a large part of the archaeological site surrounding the temple. The audience departure will take place after the full moon rises at 23:00. Attendance is free of charge.
For those that wish to stay overnight, they must be at the Temple of Apollo at 17:00 to attend a two-hour seminar on understanding the set and creative expression. This group must depart from the Temple at 9:00 on Sunday, July 29 and can also join an outing to Andritsaina that will include a traditional Greek breakfast. Attendance of the seminar will cost 31 euros per person (including VAT) while the number of places is restricted. Applications for participation can be sent at the email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The performance is sponsored by the culture ministry and held under the aegis of the Greek National Tourism Organisation, in collaboration with the Ilia Antiquities Ephorate and the Western Greece Region, and with the approval of the Central Archaeological Council.