Flushing, NY – The Club for UNESCO of Piraeus and Islands which is under the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) today recognized the Greater Flushing Chamber of Commerce for their cross-cultural presentation of Porphyra’s Grecian Rock Opera: “Anna & Vladimir: the love that ROCKED the World.” The awards were presented at the announcement of Porphyra’s Queens Debut performance on Friday, June 2nd, and Saturday, June 3rd, at historic Flushing Town Hall, located at 137-35 Northern Boulevard in Flushing NY 11354. The presenter was Mr. Billy Chrissochos who is the Director of Modern Music in NY for The Club for UNESCO of Piraeus and Islands. Awards were also given to the local press who have been instrumental in helping promote Porphyra throughout the years.
Tickets are available online at porphyra.eventbrite.com.
To learn more about the show please visit http://porphyraband.com/rock-opera/
“The Chamber is pleased to present this wonderful cross-cultural performance of Anna & Vladimir. We hope this collaboration with Porphyra will strengthen our relationship between the Greek community and the many New Yorkers from around the world who now live and work in Flushing,” stated Taehoon Kim, the President of the Greater Flushing Chamber of Commerce. “We invite you to join us in this unique celebration of New York’s most diverse and dynamic community!”
The Chamber was joined by Councilman Peter Koo and members of Porphyra for a preview of “Anna & Vladimir,” which features Greek folk music, belly dancing, theatre, and a full rock orchestra performance based on the real-life romance between the 10th Century Byzantine Princess Anna Porphyrogenita and Russian Grand Prince Vladimir.
Mr. Ioannis Maronitis, President of the Club for UNESCO Piraeus and Islands and Member of the Board of the World Federation of Associations and Club Centers for UNESCO, stated “My small country, Greece, which is going through troubled times now, has a very strong weapon; its culture, history and the arts. Byzantine History is a most attractive history and the way Porphyra has worked to create this very important show, has breathed new life to the pivotal story of Anna and Vladimir."
Elaine Tuttle, Lead vocalist/Princess Anna Porphyrogenita, stated: “I'm thrilled to reprise the role of Anna, which I performed in our debut of the rock opera at Carnegie Hall in 2015. This year's production includes more new songs, all of which are on Porphyra's upcoming album, “The Starmaker’s Prophecy.” Aside from Billy, Mike, me, and our fabulous dancers, we have a new cast and musicians as well. I'm very excited the Greater Flushing Chamber of Commerce has sponsored our new show!”
Lead vocalist/Prince Vladimir Tommy Von Voigt stated: “Getting cast in Porphyra as Prince Vladimir is a rare treat. It isn't often you get to discover a really exciting chapter of European history while rocking out with a tight metal band!"
Porphyra, a Grecian Rock Opera is a thrilling, historical, cultural journey through music, dance and theater and the first Rock Opera to triumphantly debut at the prestigious Zankel Hall at Carnegie Hall on May 3, 2015. It was also the first Greek themed Rock Opera to debut Off Broadway at The Players Theatre for a three day limited run last May13-15th, 2016. And now for the first time Queens, NY is getting ready to be electrified for three shows this coming June 2-3rd at the historic Flushing Town Hall. These shows are proudly sponsored by the Greater Flushing Chamber of Commerce. Where the Silk Road ends, a romance begins.
The story of Anna and Vladimir is akin to Anthony and Cleopatra’s and the musical merges hard rock and melodic metal with Greek folk music. Porphyra, a Grecian Rock Opera, is based on Billy Chrissochos’ band Porphyra’s epic albums “Faith, Struggle, Victory” and “The Starmaker’s Prophecy”. If you are a fan of Trans-Siberian Orchestra, Rock of Ages and the Phantom of the Opera then our musical is for you. It is lovingly dedicated to the Peoples of Greece, who having passed the torch of civilization to the world, now need the support from all of us in these most troubling of times. It is time to remember those heroes and heroines that helped shape the world around us.
Porphyra will take the audience on an epic musical journey from the triumphs of Alexander the Great to the glories of Byzantium. The electric guitar, in joyous harmony with the tzoura (the bouzouki’s smaller cousin) and Greek percussion, sings the lives of the dreams and ambitions of two lovers who made their own fate and altered the course of history. The opera tells the story of Grand Prince Vladimir of Kievan Rus, the first Russian Empire, and Princess Anna Porphyrogenita of Constantinople, princess of Byzantium, the cultural beacon of the Mediterranean during Western Europe’s Dark Ages.
The year is 988AD. Emperor Basil II rules over Byzantium. His reign will usher in a second Golden Age for Greece. But, civil war threatens to destroy Constantinople from within. On the northern front, Russian Grand Prince Vladimir, begins the unification of the Kievan Rus. Ambitious to attain more glory, he marches towards the Byzantine capital of Constantinople. Embattled by the Bulgarians, a civil war and other enemies, Basil dispatches his sister Anna to negotiate a treaty with Vladimir. A smitten Vladimir seeks truce only if he can marry the Porphyrogenita, a princess “born of the royal purple.” Anna refuses to marry a pagan barbarian. Unwaivered, Vladimir keeps his eyes on the prize, Princess Anna and the City of Gold. He sends his fabled six thousand strong Varangian Guard, to aid Basil in the civil wars. Most importantly, Vladimir converts his nation to Greek Orthodox Christianity in order to marry Anna.
But, will love be strong enough to overcome that which sword and shield cannot? Will Greece survive these unprecedented obstacles? This is the story of Anna and Vladimir.
The love that ROCKED the world!
Porphyra's album "Faith, Struggle,Victory" has won best ROCK ALBUM 2016 for The Akademia Music Awards and our production is now awarded by the UNESCO world heritage organization. Learn how to support our effort. Our illustrated brochure and promotional video are on our website http://porphyraband.com/rock-opera/
The Hellenic-American Center of the Arts
Panagiotis Karousos & Billy Chrissochos