Performance Space as Collective Biography

A video by Andreas Skourtis and Panagiotis Andrianos

Presented at the Prague Quadrennial 2019, Performance Space Exhibition ‘Our Theatre of the World’

In Prague 6-16 June 2019

….

London, May 2018

In Chiliomodi, a small town close to Corinth in Greece. My place of birth.

Theatriki Skini is a theatre group made by local people, none of whom are theatre professionals except myself and the director Christos Tsirtsis. It was formed at the very beginning of a long and hard financial crisis, by the need of people to make their dreams happen, to make theatre, no matter what.

I have been the scenographer and the architect of the group from the very start.

The Performance Architecture of Theatriki Skini includes two spaces, or, two buildings that are one ‘Performance Space’.

An old warehouse is transformed to a temporary/ephemeral outdoors performance space, for one summer production each year. It lives every summer.

In addition to this, in 2015 a space in the centre of the town was re-designed to a smaller indoors theatre. It is now the ‘permanent home’ of the group and hosts smaller theatre productions in the winter. It lives throughout the year.

The two performance spaces define, in many ways, the existence of the group. Without these spaces, the group would not be sustainable, or even exist. Performance space is an inseparable part of the group’s collective biography.

The cultural landscape of the town has been transformed by the existence of the group, and by the transformation of the two buildings to performance spaces.

In this video, I revisit both ‘theatres’ in February 2018, and invite members of Theatriki Skini for a gathering and reflective talk inside the small indoors theatre.

How, performance architecture and my involvement, contributed in making their dream happen? How do they feel about their ‘performance space’?

What architecture is ‘important’ – and what ‘architecture’ is ‘non-important’?

Video Direction: Andreas Skourtis, Panos Andrianos

Produced by: Performing Architectures – Andreas Skourtis

With the support of the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama – University of London

All photos by Michalis Andrianos – © Performing Architectures, Andreas Skourtis

Members of Theatriki Skini Chiliomodiou that appear in the video:

Christos Tsirtsis, Director

Konstantinos Tsoumanis, Gardener

Dimitris Andrianos, Merchant

Mania Chrysomallidou, Sculptor

Giorgos Kanellos, Taxi Driver

Anastasia Lafkioti, Winemaker

Giorgos Tsoumanis, Firefighter

Dimos Laskas, Professor Social Studies

Manto Giokari, Employee

Giorgos Tsoumanis, Farmer

Christos Parham, Sales Representative

Spyros Mpoumpas, Design Technician

Marina Kanellou, Economist

Paraskevi Mpintakou, Beautician

Spyridoula Tsoumani, Conservation Technician

Panagiota Vourvopoulou, Civil Servant

Video Direction: Andreas Skourtis, Panos Andrianos

Cinematography: Panos Andrianos, Michalis Andrianos

Video Editing: Panos Andrianos

Produced by: Performing Architectures – Andreas Skourtis

With the support of the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama – University of London

2018