The very successful one-woman play On Arriving was presented on September 22-23, 2021, at the Cyprus House in central London.
The event was held under the auspices of HE the High Commissioner, Mr Andreas S. Kakouris, who took the stage first to welcome the actress and the director of the play, as well as the diverse audience that filled the room. Dr Marios Psaras, Cultural Counsellor at the Cyprus High Commission, then presented the play.
Written by American playwright Ivan Faute, On Arriving explores a young refugee’s fight for survival as her country falls apart before her eyes. This brave, poetic play looks at the human moments of one person’s choice to leave a place they have known their entire life, to set off for something unknown. Directed by Cat Robey, actress Sophia Eleni performs with deep, personal connection to the story of home and war, her own family having been made refugees when fleeing Cyprus in 1974 after the Turkish invasion.
After the play, there followed a Q&A session with the director and actress, moderated by Dr George Rodosthenous, Associate Professor in Theatre Directing at the School of Performance and Cultural Industries of the University of Leeds. They discussed about the theme of the play, the actress’s personal connection to the story and the ways of raising awareness regarding the refugees and their lives’ struggles.
At the reception that followed, the diverse audience of journalists, academics, industry people and members of the Cypriot and Greek communities in London had the opportunity to network and discuss directly with the artists.
The event was organised by the Cyprus High Commission – Cultural Section and sponsored by Cyprus Ministry of Education, Culture, Sport and Youth – Cultural Services, and Arts Council England.
Photos by Tas Anastasi.