Hi guys…(this was from Monday night but I just got internet…)
So I realize that I have been INSANELY lacking on the posts lately, but it’s been sooooo crazy the past few weeks! And after leaving the island internet is hard to come by, and when I have it, I usually just have the time and energy to check Facebook and my email.
However, I am currently on Espresso Number 2 of the day (I’ve become addicted to the little shots of joy in the adorable baby cups, and I feel sooooo Euro drinking them) and on an EXTREMELY long train so I have time to give a nice long update, and I’ll post it when I get to my hotel, where there’s actually WIFI for once (I think…)
So I guess I’ll just start with my last week in Hydra…
I couldn’t post anything because I was so busy, in class or rehearsals from 9am to 12pm everyday preparing for our performance. It was 3 parts, of which I was cast in all three, and took place in the small ancient theater in the backyard of the mansion where our program took place. The ENTIRE island came because they all know our director Corrina and she is so scary, if she knew you didn’t come you’d be sure to expect a very harsh verbal lashing, but it made the performance a really big deal which was so fun. So the performance had 3 parts, and the first 2 were centered around the tragedies that concern the house of Atrius, which is a royal family cursed with generations of murder. First, there was a 5 min dance concerning the myth of Iphigenia at Aulis, where Agamemnon’s daughter is sacrificed to please the goddess Artemis. Artemis was angered by troops, on their way to retrieve Helen who was stolen by the Trojans, who murdered a deer, and so she stopped the wind, so they couldn’t sail. She would start the wind again if Agamemnon would sacrifice his daughter, Iphigenia, as payment and in the end of the myth she goes willing to martyr herself for Greece. I portrayed the wind in the ballet and it ended up being a very beautiful piece. The second part of the show was the main part, which was 25 min of scenes from the plays about the house of Atrius. We performed the “key scenes”, usually right before a murder, from 5 different plays, and put them together so they flowed to a soundtrack. It’s kind of hard to explain but it was really, really powerful, and I LOVED the part I was cast as! Most people were in the chorus and in each of the 5 scenes there were 2-3 speaking roles, and I got one, and not only that but it was SUCH a fun role for me. I was cast in Trojan Women, a play about the end of the Trojan War, after the Trojans have lost and women are being taken as prisoners of war, as Helen of Troy, the woman who caused all the death and destruction to begin with. My scene was me meeting my husband Menelaus for the first time and him sentencing me to death, while I basically seduced him and convinced him not to, or at least tried. It was so incredibly fun and afterward a lot of people I didn’t know came up to me and said they loved our scene which was so rewarding after all the hard hours we’d put in. Our director was a really famous Greek actor and director, who was really the genius behind it all and I can’t wait to work with him again someday! Although I loved that part, the real fun came during the third part. It was an Egyptian belly dance, taught by my new idol Sara, a professional Egyptian dancer and actress who flew in from Cairo to teach us! We had belly dance class for 2 hours in the morning every day and then choreography class for another 2 in the afternoon, and ended with an amazingly cute dance that stole the show!!!! I haven’t had that much fun dancing since my dance team went to the finals at our nationals in February, and I am definitely planning to continue with Egyptian and belly dancing because I’m totally obsessed!
Okay, so that explains our performance, but that wasn’t even the best part! After the show, in typical Greek tradition, every person who came brought food and wine, and we played traditional Greek music and traditionally Greek danced for HOURS! It was the most fun I’ve had on the trip and a great ending to an amazing program, one that I will remember for the rest of my life. I was so sad to leave Hydra, but we went to Athens the next day, which was amazing! We got to see the Acropolis and all my friends and I had a great last night together before we all left for our separate ways, which for me was Italy.
So I got to Italy on Monday, only to find out my two friends who were meeting me at our hotel had missed their flight and wouldn’t get in until the next night! I was in Rome alone!?! I decided I would make the best of it and toured the city all by myself the next day. It was amazing to know that I was independent enough to go all around a foreign city by myself and have a great time! Then my friends got there and we toured Rome for 2 days, seeing all the sites like the Colosseum and the Trevi Fountain, where I made a wish of course, and the Sistine Chapel, which is so incredible I was moved to tears. Michelangelo is the definition of talented. I have never, and know I never will see anything that beautiful, and that made me really sad actually, but so grateful that I got to experience that kind of beauty, at least once. Then my friend Huong went home and Athena and I jetted off to Florence, where I realized what it feels like to fall in love with a city. Florence, the eternal city, is the prettiest place in the world, filled with art, fashion, wine, an amazing nightlife, quaint architecture, and breathtaking panoramic views. There is definitely a reason that it was the center of the artistic world, and it is officially my favorite place on the planet. I have an unfortunate love of dance, art, fashion, and fine dining, unfortunate because all of those tend to be elitist and expensive, and Firenze (Florence in Italian) has all of that in excess. The art I have seen here, like Michelangelo’s David, or Michelangelo’s The Sexiest Man Alive as I like to call it, and Botticelli’s The Birth of Venus, have inspired me to consider a job in the art world because I love it so much; that is if performance falls through. Also, I have eaten so much gelato, the best pizza I can imagine (especially since I don’t particularly like pizza at all), and so much pasta (of which gnocci with pears and gorgonzola has been my favorite) that I’m petrified of putting on my jeans when I get back, but it has definitely been worth it. I could see myself living here, lounging in a café next to the sleek Chanel store, sipping Espressos and discussing the Renaissance sculptures’ influence on modernist abstractions, as the sun sets over the Duomo and the lush Tuscan landscape. Or, I would at least love to take my daddy back here for some exquisite Tuscan wine tasting.
Well, that is enough for now. I am currently on a spur of the moment trip to the South of France, probably Nice and then St. Tropez, (insert jealous comments here) and cannot wait to lay out on a beach, drink some French wine and spot a few famous people, for the last days of my European adventure.
It has been the most amazing experience of my whole life, and I would just like to thank my wonderful parents for this. They are the most generous people in the world, and I admire and love them more than they know, and am so grateful for all that they have and still do for me. So thank you PU’s (parental units), I love and miss you!