ATHENS, Greece - (NewMediaWire) - March 17, 2023 -- Living Opera, the Nashville-based web3 multimedia startup connecting classical music and blockchain communities, today announced that its CEO, Soula Parassidis will make her Greek operatic debut this Saturday, March 18, at the Pallas Theatre in Athens, in the title role of Iphigénie in Christoph Williabald Gluck’s masterpiece “Iphigénie en Tauride.” The debut comes on the 100 year birthday of the late Maria Callas, a cultural icon and Greek soprano who performed the role in 1957 at La Scala in Milan.

Parassidis, who became a Greek citizen in 2018, will star in an all new production with an outstanding cast of distinguished international artists, including Franciso Gatell, Philippe Nicolas Martin, and led by conductor and Gluck expert George Petrou, and a fresh view of the piece by director Thanos Papakonstantinou. 

Parassidis is a renowned performer who has appeared at many of the world’s most important opera and concert venues including: Festival Aix-en-Provence, Guangzhao Opera House, Oper Leipzig, Teatro Regio Torino, Teatro Massimo Palermo, L'Opéra National de Bordeaux, Theater an der Wien and many others. 

In addition to her performance career, her role at Living Opera finds her working on issues of funding, distribution, access, organization, and reform in the performing arts space, and in response to many of the relevant issues Parassidis has faced in her own career around visibility and funding, she has also founded the Living Arts Foundation – a non-profit decentralized autonomous organization (DAO) – that provides artists with a pathway to fundraising by decentralizing individual grantmaking. “The genesis of this idea is found in my own life… a local philanthropist sowed into my life, allowing me to move to Germany and eventually launch an international career,” said Parassidis.

In September 2022, she launched the Magic Mozart NFT collection, which functions as a community of practice where members who hold a Mozart NFT earn access to free arts entrepreneurship training, a digital credential, and subsequently the opportunity to apply for micro-grants from the Living Arts Foundation. Tokens are sponsored by philanthropists who receive tax incentives for donating to the arts. “NFTs are a vehicle for connecting artists and philanthropists more directly, which increases the degree of transparency and accountability,” said Christos Makridis, co-founder of Living Opera.

Living Opera’s model contrasts with the dominant approach to arts funding in Europe, consisting largely of state support. Such is the case with “Iphigénie en Tauride,” which was originally scheduled at Olympia, Municipal Music Theater "Maria Callas," but was moved at the last minute in a dramatic turn of events resulting from recent socio-political unrest in Athens. These challenges highlight the ongoing need for artists to participate in the dialogue with politicians and business leaders around how the arts are funded, and how best to equip artists to thrive and participate in the creation of fine art.

Living Opera believes that blockchain technology can serve as a potential catalyst to not only sustain art, but also expose artforms to new audiences and venues. Living Opera continues to support the arts, build community, and spread awareness about the issues facing many artists throughout the world.

About Soula Parassidis

Soula Parassidis is an international opera singer and entrepreneur with a passion for seeing people thrive. In addition to her artistic and entrepreneurial work, she also serves on the board of The Exodus Road, an anti-human trafficking organization in the USA.

About Living Opera

Founded by two opera singers and an economist, Living Opera is a multimedia art-technology company that unites the classical music and blockchain communities to produce transformative content. Living Opera takes a holistic approach to life, work, and education: “living” means “full of life and vigor,” and “opera” means (in Latin) “labor, effort, attention, or work.” Living Opera NFT collections, such as Magic Mozart, are designed to bring the art and tech worlds together by expanding the audience of people who traditionally engage with classical music and fine art.

Jon Lindsay Phillips