What’s On in Athens: Events, Exhibitions, Festivals and More

From food festivals to concerts to international exhibitions, here's a list of some of the best events happening around the city in the next months.


DIMITRIS ALITHINOS

Roma Gallery, to October 19

The Roma Gallery kicks off the 2019/20 season with a show of works by Dimitris Alithinos. The critically acclaimed artist is considered among the pioneers of his generation for his ability to tap into the zeitgeist and address major issues such as the destruction of the natural environment, a recurring subject in his work since the 1980s. Alithinos also represented Greece at the 1997 Venice Biennale, while he was awarded by the Association of Greek Art Critics in 2013 for his contribution to contemporary Greek art.

Opening hours are Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays from 13.00-20.00 and Wednesdays and Saturdays from 10.00 to 16.00.

5 Roma, Kolonaki

CHOCOLATE FEST

Old OSY Depot, October 17-20

Chocolate lovers (i.e. everyone) will find paradise at the Old OSY Depot on October 17-20, as Chocolate Fest brings together some of the best chocolate producers and pastry bakers in the city.

Aside from trying products from the various exhibitors, visitors can also follow live cooking sessions and join in workshops hosted by famous chefs and food bloggers. Meanwhile, DJs from Pepper 96.6 and Menta 88FM will stand for the music.

Pireos & Ermou

PICASSO & ANTIQUITY

Museum of Cycladic Art, June 20-October 20

Famous for his spectacular paintings but less for his drawings, engravings, and pottery, Picasso’s work in these art forms was greatly inspired by the ancient Greeks. “Picasso and Antiquity. Line and clay” is a rare exhibition about Picasso and the inspiration he took from ancient works of art, curated by Professor N. C. Stampolidis and Olivier Berggruen.

Read more here.

4 Neophytou Douka

SWAN LAKE

Piraeus Municipal Theater, October 9-20

The Russian Ballet Theater takes the stage at the Piraeus Municipal Theater with Tchaikovsky’s much-loved classic “Swan Lake” in a series of performances including matinees and afternoons from October 9 to 20.

Buy your tickets here (link in Greek).

32 Iroon Polytechniou

PILOBOLUS

Galatsi Olympic Hall, October 18-20

The wildly popular American dance theater group Pilobolus returns to Greece next month with “Come to Your Senses,” to be performed at the Galatsi Olympic Hall as part of the annual Christmas Theater program of cultural events. The show features Pilobolus classics alongside two new works, including its first-ever women’s trio, and combines the arts of dance, video installation and theater.

Shows start at 21.00 on October 18 and 19 and at 19.00 on October 20.

For tickets call 11876. 137

Veikou, Galatsi

WIM MERTENS

Pallas Theater, October 22

Respected Belgian composer Wim Mertens, a leading figure in the contemporary classical and avant-garde music scenes, takes the stage at the Pallas Theater with a program of pieces composed for films and plays, and well as tracks from his latest album, “That Which is Not.”

5 Voukourestiou

Las Vegas Magic Festival

Galatsi Olympic Arena, October 25-27

Magicians and illusionists from glittery Las Vegas will be displaying their reality-defying skills – including making a helicopter disappear – at the Galatsi Olympic Arena from October 25 to 27. Some of the stellar names on the roster include celebrated illusionist Julius Frack, 29-year-old daredevil Maxim Maurice and hilarious mime Charlie Frye.

Shows take place on Friday at 20.00, on Saturday at 16.00 and 20.00, and on Sunday at noon and 16.00.

Buy your tickets here (link in Greek).

137 Veikou, Galatsi

LA SONNAMBULA

National Opera, October 11-29 (selected dates)

The Greek National Opera inaugurates its 2019-20 season with Vincenzo Bellini’s “La Sonnambula,” in a grand co-production with the Vienna State Opera and the Royal Opera House. Directed by Marco Arturo Marelli, who sets the action in a sanatorium, the production is conducted by Philippe Auguin, with Agathangelos Georgakatos leading the chorus, and costumes designed by Dagmar Niefind.

Shows take place on October 11, 13, 16, 18, 20, 25, 27 and 29, with Tassos Apostolou and Christophoros Stamboglis alternating in the role of Count Rodolfo, Anna Agathonos and Elena Marangou as Teresa, Christina Poulitsi and Vassiliki Karayanni as Amina, and Yannis Christopoulos and Vassilis Kavayas as Elvino.

Buy your tickets here.

Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center, 364 Syngrou, Kallithea

CHISEL & MEMORY

Acropolis Museum, to October 31

The Acropolis Museum pays homage to the marble craftsmen and laborers who have worked on the preservation and restoration of the ancient Greek citadel with great dedication over the decades with an exhibition of photographs. Part of ongoing events celebrating the museum’s 10th anniversary, “Chisel and Memory: The Contribution of Marble Craftsmanship to the Restoration of the Acropolis Monuments” consists of 100 candid shots spanning 40 years. It is on display in the temporary exhibition area near the entrance.

Opening hours are Mondays from 8.00to 16.00, Tuesdays to Thursdays and Saturdays and Sundays from 8.00 to 20.00, and Fridays from 8.00 to 22.00. Admission is free of charge.

15 Dionysiou Areopagitou

MEDEA AND OTHER FRIENDS

Athinaiki Skini, to October 31

Produced by the KOILON production team, “Medea and other friends I made in Athens” follows the adventures of a tourist who, on a visit to the Acropolis, slips, hits his head, and suddenly finds himself in the 5th c. B.C. Specially written for visitors to Athens, the play is performed in English.

Shows start at 15.00 daily until June 15th, and at 18.00 starting June 16th. Tickets cost 18€ for adults and 14€ for children.

Find more information here.

Ath. Diakou & 13 Tzireon

FRUITS & SYMBOLS

Numismatic Museum, to October 31

The riches of the land, including pomegranates, grain, grapes and olives, have served as a source of inspiration for artists ever since ancient times. The Numismatic Museum presents 337 ancient Greek, Roman and later coins, seal stones and lead and clay symbols depicting Greek fruit and foliage, juxtaposed with pieces of contemporary jewelry by 19 Greek and foreign designers.

12 Panepistimiou

WOMEN OF PASSION, WOMEN OF GREECE

To Treno sto Rouf, to November 2

For 16 Saturdays, Evelina Arapidi performs the three leading roles of “Women of Passion, Women of Greece.” The 60-minute play, written in English by Eugenia Arsenis, follows the characters of Medea, Maria Callas and Melina Mercouri as they explore their shared passion for love, life and creativity. Set to music by Fotis Mylonas, the dramatic performance has captivated audiences since its 2016 debut and subsequent tour through Australia and Brussels.

The performance will take place at the unique, vintage Railway Carriage at Rouf.

Buy your tickets here.

Rouf Railway Station, Constantinoupoleos St

The Santorini Landscape in 20th-Century Greek Painting

Benaki Museum-Pireos, October 3-November 3

Odysseas Elytis, Giorgos Seferis and scores of other writers have waxed lyrical about Santorini’s natural attractions, just as dozens of visual artists have been unable to resist the siren call of the island’s stunning landscapes. Dimitris Tsitouras is a collector who has spent the past 20 years tracking down and acquiring paintings by Greek artists inspired by Santorini, 80 of which are being shown by the Benaki Museum.

Standouts include selections from artists of the Thirties Generation – Nikos Hadjikyriakos-Ghika, Yiannis Moralis and Spyros Vassiliou – as well as later artists like Opy Zouni, Costas Tsoclis and Pavlos Samios.

138 Pireos & Andronikou

PANOS KOKKINIAS

Former Stock Exchange, to November 3

Panos Kokkinias’ show “Stock Images” is the first photography exhibition to be commissioned by respected cultural organization NEON for its City Project, an annual site-specific contemporary art initiative curated by Shoair Mavlian, director of Photoworks. In this collection, Kokkinias paints a portrait of the Greek capital by capturing the places and people that form the different threads of its identity.

The show takes place in a disused building that used to house the Athens Stock Exchange.

Opening hours are Wednesdays to Fridays from noon to 20.00, Saturdays from 11.00 to 20.00 and Sundays from 10.00 to 18.00.

4 Sophocleous (3rd Floor), Stoa Athinon

SANTORINI LANDSCAPES

Benaki Museum, to November 3

Odysseas Elytis, Giorgos Seferis and scores of other writers have waxed poetic about Santorini’s natural attractions, just as dozens of visual artists have been unable to resist the island’s stunning landscapes. Dimitris Tsitouras is a collector who has spent the past 20 years tracking down and acquiring paintings by Greek artists inspired by Santorini, 80 of which are being shown by the Benaki Museum’s Pireos Street annex in Athens. Standouts include selections from the Thirties Generation — Nikos Hadjikyriakos-Ghika, Yiannis Moralis and Spyros Vassiliou — but also later artists like Opy Zouni, Costas Tsoclis and Pavlos Samios.

Opening hours are Thursdays and Sundays from 10.00 to 18.00 and Fridays and Saturdays from 10.00 to 22.00.

Admission costs 3-6 euros. 

138 Pireos & Andronikou

ATHENS BAR SHOW

Technopolis, November 5-6

The 10th annual Athens Bar Show, open to all professionals within the bar and spirits industry, will take place on November 5th and 6th. Like previous years, it will take place in indoor spaces and the courtyards of the Technopolis, in Gazi. You’ll get the chance to sample over 500 products, meet some of the most influential Greek bartenders, and join seminars with Greek and international industry professionals.

The exhibition will be open from 11.00-19.00 on both days.

Read more and get your tickets (€20 presale, €30) here.

100 Pireos

MUSIC IN ANCIENT GREECE

Museum of Ancient Greek Technology Kostas Kotsanas, November 8-9

The traditional instrument workshop Luthieros presents “The Gift of Gods: Music & Education in Ancient Greece” – a two-day festival dedicated to the music of ancient Greece featuring an interactive instrument exhibition, concerts, lectures, discussion panels and workshops. 

Some of the events will be in English, and others in Greek. Learn more and register for the event at info@seikilo.com or (+30) 211.411.0044.

6 Pindarou, Kolonaki

ATHENS MARATHON

Marathon, November 10

The 2019 Athens Marathon, dubbed “the Authentic,” takes place on Sunday, November 10, more than 2,500 after the legendary Pheidippides ran from the Battle of Marathon to Athens to announce the Greeks’ victory over the Persians. This year’s event, the 37th edition of the modern Marathon, is expected to draw 20,000 runners from around the world, while total participation is seen reaching more than 60,000 when factoring in the other races that will take place on the day.

The main marathon, covering a distance of 42.195 kilometers from the town of Marathon to the Panathenaic Stadium in the center of Athens, has reached capacity registration-wise, but you can still sign up for other options, including the 5k and 10k road races.

Register and find more information here

Emma Shapplin

Galatsi Olympic Hall, November 15 & 16

French pop opera diva Emma Shapplin returns to Greece for two appearances at the Galatsi Olympic Hall as part of the annual Christmas Theater program of cultural events. The artist will present a grand spectacular dedicated to love songs, with a cast of 100 that includes an orchestra and choir.

The concerts will start at 21.00 both days.

Buy your tickets here.

137 Veikou, Galatsi

Alexis Akrithakis: Tsiki-Tsiki

Museum of Greek Culture, September 25-November 17

“My relationship with painting is completely impulsive. It is like looking at any empty space, where a single dot can become a starting point,” said Alexis Akrithakis, one of the most important figures in the postwar art scene in Greece. Marking 80 years since his birth and 25 since his death, the Benaki Museum is organizing an exhibition dedicated to one of the artist’s signature techniques, which came to be known colloquially as “tsiki-tsiki,” a dense black-and-white drawing style that defined much of his work from the 1960s through the mid-1970s.

1 Koumbari & Vasilissis Sofias

ANIMA I

Benaki Museum, September 12-November 17

Artist Jannis Varelas constructs collage-like paintings that showcase the profundity of ordinary objects. His latest solo exhibition, “Anima I,” at the Benaki Museum’s Pireos Street annex, features items from the museum’s historical collections alongside paintings combining realism and the abstract with his friends and family as models, scrapbooks, archive material, photographs, collages, video and costumes from the preparatory stages of the performative process. The exhibition is co-produced by the Onassis Foundation.

Opening hours are Thursday and Sunday from 10.0-18.00 and Friday and Saturday from 10.00-22.00.

Read more here.

138 Pireos & Andronikou, Tavros

FROZEN ON ICE

Faliro Indoor Arena, November 20-24

Field Entertainment transports the action of the smash-hit animated adventure “Frozen” onto ice, complete with amazing scenery and cool special effects, and will be bringing its production to Athens for a run at the Faliro Indoor Arena. Not to let Disney on Ice fans down, the extravaganza will also feature appearance by Mickey, Minnie and other much-loved characters.

Buy your tickets here.

22 Koumoundourou, Palaio Faliro

 

JOSE CARRERAS

OAKA Basketball Arena, November 24

World-famous Spanish opera singer Jose Carreras, hailed as one of the three great tenors of the modern age, will perform in Athens for one night only on November 24 in a concert that is reported as being the last he is planning in Greece and the Balkans. The 72-year-old, renowned for his performances in the operas of Verdi and Puccini, will be joined by the ERT Symphony Orchestra in a program of his greatest arias.

The concert starts at 20.30.

Tickets for the show at the Olympic Stadium (OAKA) Basketball Arena start from 35 euros. Buy yours here (link in Greek).

Spyrou Loui Avenue, Maroussi

HADRIAN & ATHENS

National Archaeological Museum, to November 29

In cooperation with the Italian Archaeological School at Athens, the National Archaeological Museum presents “Hadrian and Athens: Conversing with an Ideal World,” a temporary exhibition in the Sculpture Collection’s Gallery 31A through November 29. By promoting the integration of Greek intelligentsia with Roman tradition, Hadrian contributed decisively to forging a common cultural base that served as a fundamental element of Western culture. All 40 of the exhibits come from the National Archaeological Museum’s collections.

Opening hours though March 31 are Mondays and Wednesdays to Sundays from 8:30 to 16:00 and Tuesdays from 13.00 to 20.00. Summer hours, from April 1 to October 31, are Mondays and Wednesdays to Sundays from 8:00 to 20:00 and Tuesdays from 13.00 to 20.00.

Admission costs 5 euros though March 31 and 10 euros from April 1 to October 31.

44 Patission

THE GREAT TAMER

Megaron Athens Concert Hall, November 29 & 30

After touring the world for two-and-a-half years, award-winning choreographer Dimitris Papaioannou returns to Greece for two final performances of “The Great Tamer”. With allusions to Greek mythology, the paintings of Mantegna, Courbet and Rembrandt, and films including Stanley Kubrick’s “2001: A Space Odyssey,” in this piece Papainoannou explores the inner forces that man has to tame in order to achieve self-fulfillment.

Buy your tickets here.

1 Kokkali & Vassilissis Sofias

ATHENSCON

Tae Kwon Do Stadium, November 30-December 1

Athenscon is for anyone who loves comics, pop-art, color and fun, or just have an urge to wake the child within. Visitors can get works signed by Greek and international writers and artists, attend seminars and take part in workshops, play the newest video games and board games for free, and much more.

Go here for details about the events.

Palaio Faliro

CHRONOGRAPHY

Archaeological Society at Athens, to December 31 (duration extended)

Robert McCabe’s photographs in regions of archaeological significance during his first trips to the country between the mid-1950s and early 1960s, are on display at the Archeological Museum at Athens. The aim of the exhibition is to highlight the key role played by the Archaeological Society in shaping the self-awareness of the Greeks as a nation. The American photographer’s shots show Greece at a time when there were few cars and infrastructure was basic, and include a tour of the Peloponnese with British philhellene and distinguished archaeologist Alan Wace.

Opening hours are Mondays to Fridays from 10.00 to 18.00.

Admission is free of charge.

22 Panepistimiou, Omonia

SUNDIAL EXHIBITION

National Observatory, to December 31

The Visitor Center of the National Observatory of Athens (NOA) is hosting an exhibition of sundials designed by sculptor Andreas Galanakis through the end of the year. Functional and precise, these elegant timepieces can be viewed in the open air on the Hill of the Nymphs every Wednesday, Friday and Saturday evening.

Lofos Nymfon, Thiseio

COUNTLESS ASPECTS OF BEAUTY

National Archaeological Museum, to December 31

The National Archaeological Museum presents “Countless Aspects of Beauty,” the final exhibition in a fascinating trilogy showcasing the institution’s impressive collections on the occasion of its 150th anniversary. Here, 350 artifacts, digital media and other displays explore man’s eternal quest for beauty and his need to surround himself with beautiful things, from everyday cooking utensils to jewelry, perfume and other finery. The show also addresses conflicting notions of beauty and aesthetic trends as they evolved from Neolithic times to late antiquity.

Opening hours are Mondays from 13.00 to 20.00 and Tuesdays to Sundays from 8:00 – 20:00.

Admission costs 10 euros.

44 Patission

GREEK EXPRESSIONISM

Athens Municipal Gallery, to January 5 

The Athens Municipal Gallery pays tribute to often overlooked yet important Greek artists who were active in the second half of the 20th century with “Exception: Aspects of Expressionism in Greece.” The main part of the exhibition is dedicated to painter Giorgos Bouzianis and engraver Giorgos Economidis, local pioneers of the the expressionist scene developed in Germany and France, as well as to other artists who shaped their personal idiom regardless of the strict academic edicts that influenced many artists at the time and the pull of modernism.

Opening hours are Tuesdays from 10.00 to 21.00, Wednesdays to Saturdays from 10.00 to 19.00 and Sundays from 10.00. to 15.00.

Leonidou & Myllerou, Avdi Square, Metaxourgeio

JANNIS PSYCHOPEDIS

SNFCC, to January 12

The Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center (SNFCC) has put together a retrospective on Yiannis Psychopedis that focuses on the artist’s love of poetry, something that is evident throughout his oeuvre. Engravings, watercolors, oils and portraits shed light on the influence on his art of a range of Greek and non-Greek poets, from Homer, Parmenides, Herodas and Calvo, to Byron, Palamas, Cavafy, Karyotakis, Lorca, Seferis, Elytis, Ritsos, Embirikos and Sachtouris.

The exhibition is open daily from 9.00-22.00 on the fourth floor of the National Library.

Read more about the exhibition here.

364 Syngrou, Kallithea

TESLA TRIBUTE

Kotsanas Museum, October 1 – January 31

The Kotsanas Museum of Ancient Greek Technology pays tribute to the great Serbian-American engineer, inventor and futurist Nikola Tesla (1856-1943), who, among other discoveries, revolutionized how we generate and distribute electricity. The exhibition comprises scale models, including of Tesla’s lab at Colorado Springs and his hydroelectric plant at Niagara Falls, as well as explanatory texts on his life, work and contribution.

Opening hours are 9.00 to 17.00 daily and admission costs 5 euros.

6 Pindarou, Kolonaki

JEFF WALL

The George Economou Collection, June 18-April 2020

The first solo exhibition of Canadian artists Jeff Wall’s work opens at the George Economou Collection on June 18. The artist’s fine art photography, created between the late 1980s and the 2010s, is presented in three sections, reflecting his involvement with various historical narratives.

Opening hours are Monday-Friday 10.00-18.00.

Find more information here.

80 Kifissias Avenue


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