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Photographer's Note

Time to start a walk inside the heart of the beautiful medieval town of Monemvasia. First of all I have to make clear that it's not one castle and one town, but two castles and two towns, the lower part and the upper part. The upper part, where the "nobles" used to live (you see part of the walls on the upper part of the photo) is almost completely destroyed, only the magnificent church of Aghia Sofia, remains in good condition.

Here you see the main square of the lower town, which is preserved in magnificent condition. Of course, there are no cars inside. The lower town, as well as the upper one, is surrounded by walls and is located right by the sea. The building on the left, once was a church, later become a mosque and nowadays is the archaeological museum of Monemvasia. The belltower belongs to the church of Hristos Elkomenos, and inside you can see two thrones made of marble, once destined for the Byzantine Emperors. The dome on the right of the belltower belongs to the church of Panagia Mirtidiotissa or Kritikia (=Cretan), because that was the neighborhood, where the everpresent Cretans lived.

The title of the photo comes the english title of one of Theo Angelopoulos films (Greek title "Ο Θίασος"-Thiasos). Although the picture has nothing to do with any Angelopoulos films, especially in terms of colour, and despite the fact that the director has never made a film in Monemvasia (he prefers more wintery, misty "grey" landscapes) this group of people standing and enjoying the view, looking motionless, callow and in a sense helpless and timeless remind some of the scenes from his films. By the way, I would like to say, that in my humble opinion, Theo Angelopoulos is the greatest Greek artist alive, in general.

About "The Travelling Playres"- "Θίασος", an alternative title could be "Μπουλούκι"- "Buluki". Bulukia (plural), were sorts of wandering theatre "companies" that travelled around Greece, playing a mixture of popular greek acts and famous important plays, of the world repertoire, in a show of dubious quality. Anyway, for many decades they were the only entertainment for the people of the greek countryside, so their offer in dificult eras and under dificult conditions, should be praised.


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Additional Photos by Hercules Milas (Cretense) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5339 W: 74 N: 17014] (68685)
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