Yorgos Lanthimos’ highly anticipated new film, Bleat –the second work to be commissioned as part of the GNO and NEON programme The Artist on the Composer– is to have its world-first premieres accompanied by live music ensembles on 6, 7 and 8 May 2022 inside the Stavros Niarchos Hall at the SNFCC. The Greek National Opera’s participation in the co-production is made possible by a grant from the Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF) to enhance the GNO’s artistic outreach.

The award-winning Greek filmmaker accepted the invitation extended by GNO Artistic Director Giorgos Koumendakis and NEON Director Elina Kountouri to produce, write, and direct the short film Bleat, shot on the Greek island of Tinos in February 2020, and starring Oscar-winning American actor Emma Stone and acclaimed French actor Damien Bonnard.

The Artist on the Composer programme –run by the Greek National Opera and NEON – connects pioneering contemporary artists and filmmakers/producers with orchestral music performed live. Through works that spring from the programme’s new commissions, each artist responds to, and enters into dialogue with pieces by classical composers, free from every standard operatic convention, trope and storyline, in the hope of reaching audiences who may never have connected with opera before.

Following on from The Artist on the Composer’s first commission –a 2019 installation by Nikos Navridis– the gifted and internationally renowned Greek film director Yorgos Lanthimos takes on the programme’s second commission to create a new cinematic work that will always be presented with the live accompaniment of music ensembles. The work’s music script consists of pieces by J. S. Bach / Knut Nystedt and Toshio Hosokawa, performed live inside the Stavros Niarchos Hall by the soloist Angelina Tkatcheva (cimbalom), GNO musicians and the Chorus of the Hellenic Broadcasting Corporation.