A song is a high window. It shows the way, it shows the sky. From this window we look at the world.

G. Ritsos

Cantalaloun

Μουσική εκδήλωση
Identity
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A collective, "Sea Clown Sailing Circus", comprised of circus, theater and music artists from all over the world, was active in the winter of 2016 on Lesbos, on a purely voluntary basis, responding to the refugee wave and the stacking of people in camps on the island, to provide an outlet of relief. The same collective organized the "Balance & Harmony festival" in June of the same year, four days of free courses in fields such as acrobatics and music. The spark to create a choir on the island with free access regardless of religion, language and musical skills, taught in Greek and English, lit up during those days.  Mariza Vamvoukli, originally from Lesbos, offered free choral polyphonic singing sessions as a co-ordinator/community musician/ facilitator.

Later, in November 2016, under initiative and musical direction of Mariza Vamvoukli, weekly rehearsal meetings began with about 25 people at Mosaik Support Center (one of the projects of the local solidarity group Lesvos Solidarity). Group dynamics developed very quickly among people from many different countries and backgrounds, and as early as February 2017 it performed its first impromptu musical performance, aided and inspired by the astounding circus man Fred Normal (and head of the “Sea Clown Sailing Circus”).

The show "Opera Babel”, which was performed at Mytilene Municipal Theater and the Multicultural center of Plomari, was an event for the island. It pertained to all ages - including the newly formed "Polyphonica Aegean" children’s choir - and it was an impressive intercultural harmonious partnership and synergy of people, having two refugee children from PIKPA camp holding the leading roles.

The identity of the choir evolved in the context of these events. The choir is aimed at all those who love singing and performing arts in general, while being open to horizontal, self-organized structures, without authoritarian models. It eliminates boundaries or prejudices typically posed by different ages, origins, economic and cultural backgrounds, skills and rather promotes genuine curiosity,  cooperation and mutual respect .It does not use “auditions” for member selection and rejection, and for the first three years it has operated completely free of charge.

Vision of the choir: Creating passion for polyphonic songs and repertoire from around the world, a repertoire that promotes - through its lyrics - human values and speaks of what binds us as a human species: compassion, freedom, beauty, forgiveness, empathy, humor. Furthermore, the creation is an ever-evolving and ever-changing group of people who collaborate and work harmoniously on many levels, gradually developing critical thinking and  the capability of personal music expression.

The emergence of many individuals able to guide it through improvised imaginative and playful vocal creations (using methods such as "Soundpainting" and "Kodaly method") is a wish and a pursuit for the group. Our vision is in line with the international imperatives of the 'Community music' stream, which are summed up in freedom of access and the strengthening of the individual's 'voice' through their social identity, that is to say, as a member of a group of people, where this voice is not stifled or forcefully integrated, but emerged. We are interested in polyphony as a musical practice and as a way of associating, where each individual voice justifies its existence in its own right, and even more so by complementing and intertwining with the others.