jump to navigation

A Yamato drums explosion May 23, 2007

Posted by grhomeboy in Ballet Dance Opera.
comments closed

Yamato revives an ancient tradition and gives it a modern twist

The famed Japanese drums ensemble Yamato will be giving four separate performances in Greece next month, with the participation of the percussion ensemble of the local drug rehabilitation program Ithaki.

On June 15 and 16 the traditional Waidako drum players will appear at the open-air Lycabettus Theater in Athens, before traveling south to Patras for one show on June 18 at the Roman Odeon and then up north to Thessaloniki for a gig at the Gis Theater on June 20.

The performances are part of an initiative organized by the KETHEA drug rehabilitation center and Ithaki held within the context of International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking.

Yamato was founded by Masa Ogawa in 1993. Since its formation, Yamato has played to more than a million people, giving over 1,500 performances in about a dozen different countries. The ensemble travels with several dozen large and small drums, including an odaiko made from a huge tree over 400 years old, displaying the instruments’ versatility and instinctive appeal, both in street performances and in concert halls holding several thousand people.

The band’s first trip abroad was in August 1998, when it took part in the Edinburgh Fringe Festival to great public and critical acclaim, playing to a full house and winning the Spirit of Fringe award.

Tickets for the Athens performance are available at the Athens Festival box office, 39 Panepistimiou Street, Athens, tel 210 9282900 and at Virgin Megastores. Information on tel 210 7258510 and www.ticketservices.gr 


First Contemporary Art Biennale of Thessaloniki May 23, 2007

Posted by grhomeboy in Arts Exhibitions Greece.
comments closed

‘Heterotopia as the process of art’

Almost every major arts and culture venue in Thessaloniki is hosting some part of an enormous, ambitious art exhibition this summer. Titled “Heterotopias” and featuring 77 artists from 41 countries, the First Contemporary Art Biennale of Thessaloniki addresses the issue of “center versus periphery.”

Inaugurated at the State Museum of Contemporary Art on May 21, the exhibition is about locating “heterotopias”, misplacement or displacement, in global art and juxtaposing the real world with that of art.

The philosophy behind organizing yet another international biennale of contemporary art was explained by the acclaimed art historian Catherine David, former director of the famed Documenta art expo in Kassel, Germany, and currently one of the three curators responsible for the Thessaloniki event. The French curator was invited to recommend works by artists from the Middle East. Contemporary Art Museum director Maria Tsantsanoglou is curator of art from Central Asia and from the countries of the former Soviet bloc, while Jan-Erik Lundstrom, director of Sweden’s Bild Museet in Umea, recommended artists from Africa and Latin America.

David’s recommendations reveal a generation of artists who worked according to their own rules, under particular political circumstances, and who transformed reality in a truly essential manner. For many of the artists this is the first time their work will be on display at an international event.

Greece tops EU smokers list May 23, 2007

Posted by grhomeboy in Health & Fitness.
comments closed

The population of Greece has the largest percentage of smokers in the EU, according to survey results released yesterday as the country’s anti-smoking measures prove to be less effective than those adopted in other member states.

According to a Eurobarometer report on tobacco presented by EU Health Commissioner Markos Kyprianou to the European Parliament yesterday, 42 percent of Greeks are smokers versus an average of 32 percent in the EU.

Cypriots come next with some 39 percent regularly lighting up, while Malta and Slovakia claim the fewest smokers with 25 percent of their population using tobacco products.

Some 650,000 people die each year in EU countries due to smoking-related illnesses, while a further 80,000 adults are killed by second-hand tobacco smoke.

According to the study, the majority of Europeans are in favor of smoke-free policies. Anti-smoking measures adopted so far in Greece have had less of an impact than in other EU countries.

“One in three Europeans working in indoor workplaces or offices declare to be exposed to tobacco smoke at work. The percentage of office workers who say they are never exposed to tobacco at work ranges from 96 percent in Ireland to 15 percent in Greece,” the survey said.

Around half of European homes are smoke-free on average, the study found. This varies from 83 percent in Finland and 69 percent in Sweden, to 17 percent in Croatia and 26 percent in Greece.

More European men (37 percent) than women (27 percent) consider themselves smokers, while more men claim to have given up the habit, 25 percent claiming to be ex-smokers against 18 percent of woman respondents who considered themselves former smokers.

The Commission said that less than 2 percent of smokers have asked for help from health professionals in their last attempt to quit. However, in the UK, this figure reaches 41 percent. Around a third of Europeans say they used pharmaceutical and other treatments last time they tried to give up smoking.

Bears tagged as road crosses their habitat May 23, 2007

Posted by grhomeboy in Nature.
comments closed

Environmental group Kallisto has caught and tagged six bears in northern Greece to study their habits as part of research being conducted for the construction of the Egnatia Highway.

The study relates to the construction of the 37- kilometer Panagia-Grevena stretch that runs through forest area home to brown bears, researchers said.

The animals have been tagged with tiny radio transmitters that can be monitored via satellite and will give researchers information on how bears will be affected by the construction of one of Greece’s largest infrastructure projects. Kallisto researchers have given names to the bears, such as “Four Fingers” and “The General” based on their physical characteristics. The study is being funded from the highway’s budget, in which provision has been made for environmental protection.

Finishing touches for Athens final May 23, 2007

Posted by grhomeboy in Football.
comments closed

Soccer fans pour into city

Liverpool and AC Milan put the finishing touches yesterday to their preparation for tonight’s Champions League final at the Olympic Stadium as thousands of soccer fans from England and Italy continued to arrive in Athens.

Both team managers, Rafa Benitez of Liverpool and Carlo Ancelotti of Milan, were reluctant to reveal the details of their tactics for tonight’s game as the two teams held their final press conferences yesterday afternoon and then trained on the Olympic Stadium turf under gloomy skies.

Ancelotti said that Milan would «try to impose their game» on the English side, adding that he expects Liverpool to play mostly on the counterattack.

Liverpool manager Rafa Benitez revealed little about his plans for tonight final apart from saying that the English side did not intend to man-mark AC Milan’s Brazilian star Kaka.

«It is not only about Kaka,» said Liverpool’s Norwegian defender John Arne Riise. «We have done everything right to get to the final. We are ready to go.»

The finalists stepped onto the pitch at the Olympic Stadium as more supporters continued to pour into Athens for the final.

About 50,000 fans are expected to have arrived in the city by this afternoon. Only some 34,000 will have tickets for the game and the police presence in the center of Athens remains high to ensure that ticketless fans do not misbehave.

The English supporters outnumber the Italians roughly two to one but as of last night authorities had not reported any major problems.

Police are also stepping up efforts to catch ticket scalpers who are looking to cash in on fans desperate to watch tonight’s game.

Liverpool expressed concern about the humidity in Athens but were quick to point out that they had prepared for the weather by spending a week training in Spain before flying to Greece.

Energy-sapping conditions at the Olympic Stadium tonight could rule out a repeat of the Champions League final when Milan and Liverpool met two years ago in Istanbul in a 3-3 thriller that the English side won on penalties.

Euro soccer prepares for a historic night May 23, 2007

Posted by grhomeboy in Football.
comments closed

Athens hosts Europe’s best for a third time > Milan lifted the trophy at the Olympic Stadium in 1994

AC Milan are likely to have mixed feelings about playing tonight’s Champions League final in Athens as the Olympic Stadium has hosted one of their most glorious victories but was also the scene of one of only two defeats they suffered in the present tournament.

The Italians lost 1-0 to AEK Athens on a chilly night last November but the defeat did little to halt their progress in the Champions League. That result certainly pales into insignificance when compared with a much warmer night in Athens on May 18, 1994, when Milan thrashed Johan Cruyff’s Barcelona 4-0 to lift the European Cup.

Milan dominated Italian soccer in the late 1980s and early 1990s and had won the European Cup in 1989 and 1990. They lost to French side Marseille in the 1993 final. But in Athens they were up against a talented Barcelona side, which included the deadly strikeforce of Brazilian Romario and Bulgarian Hristo Stoichkov.

And to make matters worse, AC Milan went into the game without their central defense pairing of Franco Baresi and Alessandro Costacurta. As it turned out, Barcelona were the ones that should have been more concerned.

Italian forward Daniele Massaro opened the scoring for Milan in the 22nd minute after a pass from Dejan Savicevic. Massaro doubled the lead just before halftime. Savicevic killed off the game two minutes after the restart when he lobbed Barcelona goalkeeper Andoni Zubizarreta. French defender Marcel Dessaily completed the rout in the 58th minute in what was turning out to be a very one-sided game.

The result was a triumph for Milan’s coach Fabio Capello over Barcelona’s tactician, Cruyff. “We knew what Barcelona’s strengths were and we found the right solutions to deal with them. And we created a few problems of our own for Barcelona, too. It was a victory of tactics and speed. We were the quicker team,” said Capello after the game.

Italian side Juventus did not fare so well in the first final in Athens in 1983, less than a year after the then newly built Olympic Stadium was officially opened. The Italians were beaten 1-0 by German team Hamburger SV (Hamburg) in a shock result.

The only goal of the game was scored by German international midfielder Felix Magath who struck a long-range shot passed legendary Juventus goalkeeper Dino Zoff. Zoff remained motionless as the ball flew past him with less than 10 minutes on the clock.

Despite the efforts of French midfield genius Michel Platini, now president of UEFA, Juventus were unable to get back into the game. As a result, Hamburg flew home from Athens with their first European Cup.

Athens Olympic Stadium > Greece’s Modern Parthenon May 23, 2007

Posted by grhomeboy in Architecture Infrastructure, Football.
comments closed

Athens Olympic Stadium, the venue which will host European club football’s top event

The Athens Olympic Stadium, or better, the Athens Olympic Complex, is no stranger to international competitions. The Olympic Games of 2004, the European Cup final in 1983, and the 1994 Champions League final are the famous events that have been hosted here.

Designed originally in 1979 and constructed for the 1982 European Athletics Championship, the Spiridon Louis Stadium, as it was known, was named after the winner of the first Olympic marathon in the Greek capital in 1896. The Olympic Stadium is located in the north of the city of Athens in the Municipality of Marousi.

It was inaugurated by then Greek President Kostantinos Karamanlis on 8 September 1982 and at the end of the same season hosted the Champion Clubs’ final where a virtuoso performance by now coach but then midfielder Felix Magath sealed for Hamburger SV a surprise victory over Juventus.

Eleven years later it was Milan’s time to celebrate a win here, as they outclassed Barcelona’s galaxy of stars.

The Olympic Stadium’s history can very well divided into two periods. The first one lasted until 2000 when a major revamp was carried out to get it ready for the 2004 Olympics.

A controversial roof designed by famous Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava was added atop the sidelines in order to shade fans from the strong Athens sun. Calatrava’s roof along with other architectural monuments in and outside of the Olympic Complex, drew harsh criticism for their costs. However, they are now considered sites of references for the modern city of Athens.

The Champions League final on May 23, 2007, between Milan and Liverpool comes only seventeen days after the Olympic Complex hosted the Final Four of the European Basketball Club Championship. Thousands have besieged the stadium, and it’s only left to see if Athens Olympic Stadium will live up to its standard.

Related Links > http://www.oaka.com.gr