Left to right: Konstantinos Doikos, Kelly Demetra Varsami, and Dean Efkarpidis at the Greek Cultural Center in Astoria. Photo: courtesy of Academy of Hellenic Paideia
ASTORIA – Greece’s leading short film festival based in Drama, landed in Astoria on June 18, at the Greek Cultural Center as part of the 5th Annual Timarete Festival. The Academy of Hellenic Paideia invited New Yorkers to experience a glimpse of Hellenic art and culture through a series of awarded short films.
The Drama International Short Film Festival, founded in 1978, is the prime Greek and South-Eastern European gateway to the world’s most prestigious short film awards. Nominated filmmakers qualify for the European Film Awards which recognize excellence in cinematic achievements.
Dean Efkarpidis, board member of the Greek Cultural Center told TNH, “it is our third collaboration since the Timarete festival began. We are very happy for this partnership since we have many common proposals and goals for culture here in New York,” adding, “when the festival first came, I was thrilled to include it in our own program.”
The cultural center has not been active the last two years due to the pandemic, however they are slowly becoming more active with events as we head closer to normality.
“COVID-19 has delayed us, but we are getting stronger every year and we hope to continue our work for the years to come as we want to bring a little dose of culture and a little dose of Drama, a beautiful city in Northern Greece, to New York,” Efkarpidis stated. He later added, “it’s very important for Greek American organizations to come together and help each other. The collaboration has a lot more meaning right now than it used to have.”
The genre of most the short films presented was fiction, including Pashka, Melatonin, Goads, Antivirus, and The Meaning of August, as well as a few documentaries such as Bella and Teo, My Neighbor.
Kelly Demetra Varsami told TNH, “besides the awarded short films that they send us from Drama, we also add two films from the production of Hellenic Paideia.”
The Academy of Hellenic Paideia is a non-profit organization that focuses on the development and support of educational programs to teach and preserve Greek language and culture. Timarete festival is part of this effort as it hosts art exhibitions, film screenings, theatrical plays, music, and dance performances.
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