EllinikoTheatro is an international performing arts organization based in New York and Athens. Since its inception in 1979, it has sought to serve as an innovative carrier of cultural diplomacy, expanding the temporal, spatial and social boundaries of Hellenic Theatre.


Cavafy: Poet of the City

A Poetry Reading Performance by Yannis Simonides

CAVAFY: Poet of the City is a solo piece based on the life and work of Alexandrine poet Constantine P. Cavafy (1863-1933), in the tradition of Julie Harris’s THE BELLE OF AMHERST (Emily Dickinson) and Pat Carroll’s GERTRUDE STEIN.   

“A very successful tribute to C. Cavafy. An enchanting reading-performance.”
       The National Herald          

  “Yannis Simonides provided an unforgettable experience that changed my view of poetry and of Greece forever.
Truly one of the best literary and theatrical experiences I have had in my life.”

RR, Fieldston High School student, Riverdale, NY

 “Absolutely mesmerizing and engaging, even to those who do not know Cavafy at all!” 
VP, Bellport & New York City

“The performance is truly amazing. I was actually completely awestruck!”
MG, Boston College senior 

The work intends to bring to life a man who is considered to be one of the most important poets of the 20th century. By paying homage to the theatricality of Cavafy’s voice and gesture, his private universe and public persona, Simonides attempts to arrive at the moments of the poet’s inspiration, to peer at the workings of his lifelong struggle with adversity and of his ultimate liberation, and to sculpt these findings on stage in a manner that may shock the audience into a recognition of humanity’s possible redemption through the power of love, art, irony and the pleasures of learning.

The performance is accompanied by music of the time and by images of Alexandria and Cavafy’s life.