As part of the annual celebrations of La Francophonie in Greece, the Canadian Embassy, in collaboration with the Embassy of France, l'Institut français de Grèce and local partners, organized two concerts by Canadian-Algerian singer/composer Lynda Thalie in Athens and Thessaloniki.
Ms. Thalie's repertoire presents music from the Maghreb, southern Europe and francophone Canada, highlighting the rich diversity of francophone countries, including Canada and Greece.
Ms. Thalie, whose Athens performance officially opened the Francophonie celebrations, performed in filled-to-capacity theatres to an audience of 800 people, which included prominent personalities and influencers in politics, media, academia and business. Ms. Thalie is an exceptionally talented and communicative performer, and audiences at both concerts clapped and sang along throughout the performance.
At the Athens concert, one of Greece's most prominent singers, Ms. Haris Alexiou, made a special guest appearance where the two artists sang a duet in Greek and Arabic of the song "Tango to Evora" composed by Canada's Loreena McKennitt. The duet brought the audience to its feet applauding with emotion and enthusiasm.
As these concerts were held in the context of the francophonie celebrations in Greece, Ms. Thalie also participated in a special event for Greek youth where the winners of the national Francophonie scholastic competition were presented with special prizes. On this occasion, Ms. Thalie spoke to a Greek youth audience on the importance for respect for diversity and tolerance.
Ms Thalie gave several interviews to Greek media including, a total of fifteen feature interviews in the Greek press, one interview on national television and four on Greek radio. During her interviews, Ms. Thalie spoke of the diversity of her music but also of the importance for solidarity among people, particularly during these difficult times. In this context, proceeds from Ms Thalie's concerts were donated to two humanitarian causes: the Elli Lambeti Centre (www.elli-lampeti.gr) for support to women with breast cancer in Athens and the Shelter for the Homeless of the Municipality of Thessaloniki.
The Lynda Thalie concerts were made possible with the support of the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade, le Conseil des arts et des lettres du Québec, la Délégation Québec Rome and numerous local organizations.