Fengaros, Cyprus’ open-air summer festival, is moving out of its quaint, rural landscape and heading into the digital realm with its first online edition, Fengaros Reacts. From January 10-31, Fengaros Reacts will present a programme of ten Cypriot acts, streamed on Louvana Records and Fengaros Festival’s Facebook and YouTube channels.
With an exclusively local line-up, Fengaros Reacts will bring together some of Cyprus’ most exciting independent acts and promote the music that the island’s new generation of artists have been brewing recently – all available for audiences to tune in to the musicians’ live sets for free! From now and until the end of the festival, fans will be able to donate and support the artists and art workers involved in Fengaros Reacts, plus grab some merch from the festival platform.
With Fengaros scheduling the tenth anniversary of its summer edition, Fengaros Reacts is a reaction to the pandemic’s toll on Cyprus’ music sector including musicians, art workers and technicians. “We believe that nothing can replace the experience of an in-person live show but people need music, artists need to perform and we decided to make sure we will make that happen,” say festival founders Lefteris Moumtzis and Andreas Trachonitis.
As an island nestled in the East Mediterranean and functioning as a crossroad between three continents, Cyprus’ music scene cooks up a unique amalgamation of artistic styles. Expect intimate singer-songwriter dreamscapes, gutsy and energised rock performances, and fresh takes on the island’s traditional music – all to be streamed locally, live from Studio eleven63. Fengaros Reacts is promoting the discovery of current Cypriot talent by spreading online where local audiences, fans from abroad and anyone on the lookout for the island’s fresh new music can tune in.
Sunday January 10, 9.15pm
Laliá: Polyphonic singing taking the listener on a journey across the Balkans and Mediterranean
Wednesday January 13, 9.15pm
Delirium Elephants: A tasty cocktail of high-energy, melodic pop-rock, fusing influences from the 60s, 90s and psychedelia.
Friday January 15, 9.15pm
George Sidiropoulos: Indie-soul melodies and grooves that flow between throwback references and current sounds
Sunday January 17, 9.15pm
Private Garden: Power trio influenced by rock, indie and blues, performed with soulful vocals and virtuosity
Tuesday January 19, 9.15pm
Nama Dama: An experimental, piano-driven amalgam of musical stories and theatrical, powerhouse vocals with a backdrop of classical, folk, rock and soul music
Thursday January 21, 9.15pm
Demetris Mesimeris: A collection of songs and poems with rembetiko, urban Greek folk and traditional elements with a modern take on orchestrations
Sunday January 24, 9.15pm
Metaxas: Emotive, sunshine pop delivered with silky vocals to leave a positive aftertaste
Wednesday January 27, 9.15pm
The smallest Creature: A grungy and propulsive alt-rock force to be reckoned with
Friday January 29, 9.15pm
Erika Soteri: Jazzy and soulful tunes that cut through the mainstream
Sunday January 31, 9.15pm
Vassilis Philippou: Original songs written in the tradition of Cypriot roots music and poetry
Online, free music festival featuring solely Cypriot acts. January 10-31, 2021. Donations accepted. www.fengaros.com/reacts
In the myth of Aphrodite’s birth, the beautiful Goddess of Love emerges naked from the water around Cyprus. She had just been created from the foam of the sea caused by Cronus castrating his father Uranus and throwing his genitals into the water. Although Aphrodite had originally begun drifting towards the Greek island of Cythera, the wind blew her towards her spiritual home near Paphos.
According to local legend, it was on this particular beach – near the temple built at Palaipaphos (Old Paphos) to worship her, as early as the Bronze Age that she arrived, and this is why it is now known as the Birthplace of Aphrodite.
This stretch is one of the most beautiful along the south-western part of Cyprus, with the coastline meandering along, creating coves and points. From the pebbly beach at the Birthplace of Aphrodite, you can see dramatic white cliffs in the distance. Closer to the shore, large rocks jut out from the water.
One of these rocks has been named Aphrodite Rock – partly because of the foam that is being formed at its base, which brings in mind the story of the deity’s birth. A local story is that anyone who swims around the rock will be blessed with eternal beauty.
While some visitors come to the Birthplace of Aphrodite for the scenic views, it is also a popular swimming spot. Tourists and locals head to the beach on warm days to enjoy the sunshine and refreshing water. There is a parking lot, shop and restaurant. As this is one of the utmost romantic spots on the island, it is very popular for wedding proposals.
The beach is about a 25 minute drive from the harbour of Paphos and is close to the Sanctuary of Aphrodite, which is part of the World Heritage site. It means it is easy for you to combine a visit to the two locations.