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25 Years of Friendship for Georgia and Greece

By Mariam Chanishvili
Monday, October 30
On October 25, Ilia State University Theatre hosted a solo performance Socrates Now. The 80-minute solo performance captures the essence of Socratic ethics. The Play was performed in Greek with Georgian subtitles.

The event was held to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the two countries diplomatic relations and was attended by the representatives of the Embassy.

The production has been supported and sponsored by the Greek National Tourism Organisation, Aegean Airlines, Ilia State University and the Embassy of the Hellenic Republic in Georgia.

The performance was directed by an Emmy Award Winner and Yale trained actor Yannis Simonides and was followed by an interactive dialogue session with the audience, which provided the opportunity to reflect on questions pertinent not only to Socrates era but to our times as well.

Socrates Now follows Plato’s text closely. It starts out with Socrates reviewing the charges against him as well as the motives of his accusers. Midway through the performance Socrates reports the verdict: guilty. Socrates acknowledges that the prosecution asks for death. After the death sentence is decided, Socrates addresses the jurors who voted to convict him and those who voted to acquit him separately, in turn. He closes by reflecting on death and the immortality of the soul.

Simonides thanked the audience and the Greek Embassy in Tbilisi after the performance, noting that it is his first time in Georgia.

First presented by Elliniko Theatro in New York in 2004, it has since been performed to great acclaim at the United Nations, the Athens Agora, the NBC Today Show, and in over 440 venues around the world. It has been filmed by National Geographic and presented as part of the PBS/NGS documentary series “The Greeks”.

Greece and Georgia established diplomatic relations in 1992. Greece has an Embassy in Tbilisi since 1995, within which a Consular Office operates since 1996. Georgia has an Embassy in Athens and a Consulate-General in Thessaloniki.

Georgia and Greece have a long history and friendship. The Greek Embassy in Tbilisi has organized many events and programs in Georgia. In Georgia, the main on-going Greek cultural activity is the Programme for the Teaching of the Greek Language and Culture at the University of Tbilisi and schools in various regions throughout the country financed by Greece in cooperation with the Georgian Ministry of Education.