“I am not afraid of what the audience thinks.”
Maria Tsaroucha directs “The Poor Soul of Naples” at the Epi Kolono theater and sings at two different musical venues in Athens.
Written by George Vidalis
In addition to being constantly active and creative on the theatrical stage as well as in musical scenes, Maria Tsaroucha is currently performing in three different venues.
At the Epi Kolono Theater, she has directed the monologue of “The Poor Soul of Naples” which is based on Elena Ferande’s story, “The days of abandonment,” and is about a woman who has just been left by her husband. The adaptation of the story was written together with Pepy Moschovakou who plays the protagonist. Giannis Gonnis is also playing (Every Sunday and Tuesday).
At the venue “Doors” at Koreandou Street 25, Kolonaki, two shows take place twice a week using her own creative ideas, her own directing as well as acting. Every Wednesday the band “It’s a Wonderful World” sings foreign songs, both European and American, and there is also a magic act as well as video art. Every Thursday, the performance “Maria in Abundance” takes place where during the course of the night, there is a “display” of emotions of joy, love and “abundance” through songs where the lyrics revolve around values (Dimitris Karatzas also performs)
What does it tell us about you when you take on a project almost entirely on your own?
I am a perfectionist and that obligates me to be very strict regarding the outcome of whatever I do. The show that I am creating is based on the deconstruction of the imaginary image of an artist and on the discovery of his true identity without any fear that he might seem weak and imperfect at something. I am always ready to expose myself in this way. I am not afraid of what the audience thinks or understands. Instead what interests me is for them to feel emotions without thinking about the reason they feel a certain way.
Has the element of illustration in musicals always fascinated you?
As I get older, I am starting to be less interested in musicals, but I feel that people are interested in it. People feel a lot of pressure from life and they look for more “digestible” forms of entertainment, something that will take the edge off and help them get away from their daily routine. During periods when I am not playing in a theatrical performance, I prefer to create my own musical shows. A song for me is an interpretation of my inner voice. Musical theatrical performances have a different feeling and structure that carries something resembling a dream, just like a fairytale, it makes you feel like a child again… and who wouldn’t wish to be able to feel like a kid again.
What issues are raised in “The Poor Soul of Naples” at the Epi Kolono theater?
How much we abandon ourselves when we are incapable of dealing with rejection. How we live with such a distorted perception of social models such as the institution of marriage and how aware we are that this is happening to us. How much loathing and indifference can a mother feel toward her children and how real these emotions actually are.
For me what is most interesting is that the protagonist accomplishes something significant and hard to come by, especially these days. Through abandonment and totally losing herself she eventually beats her ego and accepts the responsibility of her actions admitting her weakness and failure. That is, she liberates herself from her past, she chooses to live in the present and no longer lives in fear.
You are a an artist, wife and mother. Do you manage equally well in all these roles?
It’s quite difficult but not impossible. Being a wife and mother are roles that require hard work and patience. And that is something I’m responsible for. Being an artist means to be Maria and that is part and parcel of who I am. Being accepted and loved by my husband for who I truly am doesn’t depend on me but on him. I am determined to live a happy life and always evolve. Just as Ι make an effort with my roles as a mother and wife, the same applies to my husband who should try to discover the beauty of sharing his life with an artist. It isn’t easy but it can be captivating to live with an artist because it is never boring. When someone exposes and reveals themselves to the world, they cannot hide. Therefore in some paradoxical way you are always honest. An artist is impelled by their feelings and the heart doesn’t know how to tell lies.