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On Saturday 18 March, under a warm starry sky in late summer, Melina Aslanidou performed to 550 lucky patrons in an open-air carpark in our historic Greek Quarter of Lonsdale Street.

The performance was in part a remnant of the postponed Antipodes Festival and the Greek Community of Melbourne’s (GCM) desire to program culturally significant activity wherever and whenever it can.

Aslanidou was enthralling and her adoring fans lapped up every minute of the two-hour show.

Her music spanned genres and generations: both young and old were transfixed by her contemporary work-as well as a return to classic sing-a-longs that eventually had the crowd up and dancing in the aisles.

“Both Melina and her band expressed to us how thrilled they were with the performance-and nobody present could disagree,” said Leo Vlahakis, Chair of the Greek Community of Melbourne’s “Antipodes Festival”.“The GCM is keen to roll out a cultural program that it hopes will re-engage with the community and will showcase the rich tapestry that is the Greek cultural landscape.”

GCM’s President, Bill Papastergiadis, also expressed his satisfaction for both the attendance and the success of the concert.

“On Saturday night we enjoyed a stunning performance by Aslanidou,” he said.

“She had a direct connection with the audience as she spoke and exchanged comments with them. Aslanidou appeared to thoroughly enjoy being with us.

For many of us it transported us back to a summertime in Greece. A warm night in an open intimate environment in the centre of Melbourne

After two years in lockdown it was an amazing exit back into normality. The Greek community of Melbourne continues to provide musical events reminding us of our connections with Greece.”

Melina Aslanidou will perform this Friday evening as a special guest at the Inaugural Grecian Ball in Melbourne and will then feature as the headline act at the remounted Sydney Greek Festival at Darling Harbour on Sunday 27 March.

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