Greek National Opera to Premiere Dimitra Trypani’s Ode to Andrei Tarkovsky

By David Salazar

The Greek National Opera is set to present the world premiere of “Andrei” on Sept. 25 – 28, 2022.

The opera, which was created by Dimitra Trypani, will honor the films of Andrei Tarkovsky and features eight scenes that will include texts corresponding to the German Requiem Mass.

“For a number of years now, I have used sound, both textual and musical, to share certain thoughts I have about fundamental human concerns. The way in which I work is most specific,” Trypani said of her approach in an official press statement. “My practice is characterized by the incorporation of texts I am employing into an orchestrated matrix of strict form; this allows for the creation of a musical flow that includes a poetic style of narration, and for the two art forms to enter into seamless discourse. That is, it allows sound in its entirety—springing from the libretto and the music—to run out towards the spectator or listener like a rushing sonic river. Co-existent within this ‘Andrei’ sonic river are a libretto by Pantelis Boukalas and the German text of the Lutheran Requiem Mass, as well as scattered fragments of scenes drawn from the seven films made by Tarkovsky.”

Trypani first encountered Tarkovsky through his film “Solaris.”

“It was like an explosion for me for various reasons,” she noted. “Firstly, it answered questions that were vital to me; questions on our species, on who we are as humans, on civilization, and also on love and faith—not faith in terms of religion, but spirituality and the ways that humans seek ways to fulfill hope. I was struck by how poetically his films pose these questions but also by the fact that they give you an answer.”

The original libretto was supplied by Pantelis Boukalas with sets designed by Elena Stavropoulou and choreography by Ermira Goro.

The work will feature performances by such artists as Iro Bezou, Irini Bilini-Moraiti, Valia Karagiorga, Giorgos Kasavetis, Marianna Kavallieratos, Dimitra Kokkinopoulou, Nandia Kontogeorgi, Hara Kotsali, Christina Maxouri, Giorgos Nikopoulos, Alexandros Psihramis, Kalliopi Simou, Fotis Siotas, Aliki Siousti, Christos Thanos, Savina Yannatou, Fanis Zachopoulos, and Nikos Ziaziaris.