Greek play causes tension in country

Greek play causes tension in country

ISTANBUL- Hürriyet Daily News
Greek play causes tension in country

Greek military commander Athanasios Diakos is shown as a killer in the play.

A theatrical play about national Greek hero, Athanasios Diakos, caused tension in Greek capital due to its controversial depiction of Diakos.

The play “Athanasios Diakos – the Return,” directed by young playwright Eleni Kicopulu, was staged as part of the Athens Festival, daily Hürriyet reported Sept. 4.

Diakos, a Greek military commander and one of the symbols of the Greek War of Independence, fought against the Ottoman Empire in 1821, is depicted in the play as a rough kebap seller who kills his wife as she gives birth to the baby of an illegal Kurdish immigrant that had been working for them.

Greek Parliament criticized the play for attempting to define a national hero as a kebap seller, a murder and cuckolded husband. In a written question to deputy Culture Minister Kostas Cavaras ruling party New Democracy member Adonis Yeorgiadis asked why the state financed a play that humiliated a Greek national hero. Members of the opposition party asked that the Athens Festival Art Director Yorgo Luku be discharged.

In a two-page article Greek Proto Theme newspaper wrote “41,000 of the citizens’ euros have been spent for this scandal [of a play] during a period of economic crisis. The Greek flag is used as a table cloth in the play.”

Writer and director Kicopulu defended the play, saying it was not a parody. “My hero, Diakos, is an ordinary person who can do both good and bad.”