In April launched “Greece-China 2017 Year of Cultural Exchanges and Cooperation in Creative Industries”. At present, Greek Minister of Culture and Sports Lydia Koniordou is paying a week-long visit in China.
Her first debut in front of the whole world was in the opening ceremony of 2004 Olympic Games in Athens. She is a Greek national actress, who has portrayed on the stage Medea and a series of wonderful figures in the history of Greek dramas. She has a profound theoretical knowledge, teaches and directs ancient Greek dramas in University of Oxford, New York University and Shanghai Theater Academy.
When it comes to drama, she shared her professional opinion, “Ancient Greek drama and Chinese Beijing Opera are both an art integrated with music, poetry and dance. There are plenty of similarities and differences in theater performance for the two countries, which shows us the meaning and the reason of our dialogue and exchange. I have started teaching ancient Greek drama in Shanghai Theater Academy, and I was looking for dialogues and communication on theater stage between the two ancient civilizations.”
Lydia Koniordou regards as important the China visit, “China and Greece are two parallelly existing great ancient civilizations. The mutual exchange between two civilizations will surely benefit each other. Chinese is a charming language, which can take us back to human memory of countless generations ago and enrich the sensation experience. I try to start learning Chinese and I would like to use such language to learn about Chinese culture and to communicate with Chinese people.”
Her first Chinese language mentor is Tong Luo, famous translator Niansheng Luo’s granddaughter. Niangsheng Luo, translator of the Complete Work of Ancient Greek Drama; Jinling Luo, famous director of a series of ancient and modern Greek dramas such as Medea and Supper; Tong Luo, owner of Qian He Culture Center and director of recently staged Greek drama Oedipus Rex; three generations in Luo family constitute the cultural inheritance sequence between China and Greece. Lydia’s Chinese language learning journey is just “unique”.
Lydia’s China visit begins from Shanghai, followed by Dunhuang, a city blended with eastern and western civilization, then to China’s capital Beijing. The journey is to trace the cultural history of “One Belt One Road” and to explore one foreign language through the dramas and murals. It is believed that the journey will bring her brand new life experience and with a Chinese-speaking Greek minister of culture, the cultural exchange between two ancient civilizations will step forward onto another even more broad stage.