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Gifted jazz vocalist Aggeliki (Psoni) and special guest Dessa Kavrakis performing at Chelsea Table + Stage in New York on June 24. Photo by Eleni Sakellis
NEW YORK – Gifted jazz vocalist Aggeliki (Psoni) impressed the audience in her latest show Aggeliki Live at Chelsea Table + Stage in New York on June 24. Accompanied by a talented group of musicians and guest stars, Aggeliki performed a diverse selection of international classics and contemporary hits along with Greek songs in a tribute to the 100th anniversary of the Asia Minor Catastrophe.
She told The National Herald that the sold-out concert was originally to be a fundraiser for her upcoming album, but instead became a fundraiser for Ukraine.
Aggeliki charmed the audience with her smooth vocals, demonstrating her versatility in each of the varied song styles and languages including English, French, Italian, Spanish, and, of course, Greek.
She was joined onstage by gifted Afro-Cuban jazz pianist Dayramir Gonzalez who impressed the audience with his performance and his enchanting arrangements of the songs. Also accompanying Aggeliki were the dynamic musicians Matt Aronoff on electric and upright bass, Dennis Pol on electric and acoustic guitar, Jared Schonig on percussion, and special guest Anthony Hervey on trumpet. As Aggeliki noted during the concert, some of the musicians who joined her onstage were in between tour dates or performances on Broadway.
Aggeliki’s duets with Haitian Rockstar Zaxai and Cypriot tenor Demetris Michael were especially entertaining, highlighting the vocal talents of the singers and their palpable chemistry as artists offering fresh interpretations of some well-known songs. Dancers Esther Lee and Giorgia Vitali also graced the stage for a few of the numbers, adding another level of theatricality to the show.
Special guest Dessa Kavrakis, a former student in the children’s choir Aggeliki directs at St. Paraskevi in Greenlawn, NY, told TNH she has been studying classical singing for four years. She sang Somewhere Over the Rainbow skillfully, showcasing Aggeliki’s efforts to “create space for young talent.”
The most touching moment was the tribute performed to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Asia Minor Catastrophe. The tribute featured the evocative sound of Lambrini Kambouras-Psyllos on canun and Stavros Papadopoulos on ney, transporting the audience with their masterful playing. Among the songs performed movingly by Aggeliki was Tzivaeri, the beloved traditional Greek folk song and mother’s lament for her child who is far away in a foreign land.
More upbeat songs followed, including Diamonds Are a Girl’s Best Friend and These Boots Are Made for Walking. The evening ended on an uplifting note as well with all the performers joining Aggeliki on stage to sing Volare, the popular Italian song officially titled “Nel blu, dipinto di blu.” Audience members joined in, too, rising from their chairs to dance and cheer.
Aggeliki expressed her gratitude to the audience for supporting this good cause and to her talented collaborators for their hard work and dedication. She will continue to work on her original upcoming releases and promises to return this fall with another fascinating performance. Stay tuned!
ATHENS – The College Year in Athens (CYA) Virtual Lecture Series continues on Wednesday, March 6, 12 PM ET / 7 PM Greece, with an enriching online lecture that promises to delve into the depths of Greek heritage and the evolution of the Greek language.
KYIV, Ukraine — President Volodymyr Zelenskyy welcomed Western leaders to Kyiv Saturday to mark the second anniversary of Russia's full-scale invasion, as Ukrainian forces run low on ammunition and weaponry and foreign aid hangs in the balance.
OXON HILL, Md. — Former President Donald Trump cast November's presidential election as “judgment day” and declared himself a “proud political dissident” during a speech before conservative activists outside of Washington Saturday as he again cloaked his campaign in religious imagery.
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