LIGHTS OF HOPE Olympiacos FC event – Karaiskaki Stadium | Piraeus | Greece | July 19th, 2020
I have had the pleasure to work with Asteris Kutulas over a period of thirty years, starting way back in the 1980s. We cooperated on numerous major productions all over the world often with extraordinary success. I have also witnessed during this time how, in his parallel life, he has realized his many book, film and art projects.
In his „Lights of Hope“ project for Olympiacos FC in the summer of 2020, Asteris Kutulas combined art and sport in a visionary concept, giving Olympiacos Piraeus and the football world a wonderful gift. It became very clear at this event that Asteris Kutulas is not only a very experienced producer, but also an inspired and inspirational filmmaker.
Asteris Kutulas wrote a detailed script for the event, using Ross Ashton’s fantastic projections, Achilleas Gatsopoulos’s and Daniel Brune’s graphic laser projections, and the live act with children’s choir and DJ, to build an emotional work of art celebrating the Olympiacos team and their fans. As the basis for what he calls his „liquid staging concept„, Asteris Kutulas chose music by Marios Joannou Elia that gives the impression of having been created especially for the event. Asteris Kutulas fused all of these elements together with the impressive lighting design of George Tellos. The result is simply sensational.
In addition, I know from my own experience what it means to produce such a project in just two weeks, and moreover under pandemic conditions. For this superhuman effort, my respect goes to Asteris Kutulas and all those involved.
Tim Dowdall, Berlin
Impresario | One-time Executive Vice President Live Nation Central and Eastern Europe (2005-2013)
Knut Foeckler: „A digital orchestration – right into the hearts of millions of viewers“
In a time, when pandemic has become another word for limitation and frustration, a team around Asteris Kutulas has created a masterpiece of multifaceted performance bringing joy into the hearts of so many football lovers. When the heroes of Olympiacos, the Piraeus based football club, had won the Greek Super League mid 2020 for the 45th time, they wanted to share their victory with all their fans. But the pandemic got in their way. However, the marketing management of Olympiacos had a spontaneous idea. They called Asteris Kutulas and asked him to do the mission impossible: He was asked to create a breathtaking event that conveyed the electrifying atmosphere of a football stadium – but without audience – and to have it ready to roll within 3 weeks‘ time.
He agreed and created a convincing concept within a few days. He pulled the best of the best together and sweating under their Covid Masks they orchestrated a „liquid staging“, projections, laser motion design, fireworks, live acts, music and much more to finally create „Lights of Hope“. Kutulas directed an international team of top talents to present a masterpiece sending the joy of a victorious football team and a light ray of hope into the world that has been darkened too long by the pandemic.
Knowing Asteris for many years, I was convinced that he would master the mission impossible, when he told me about the project sometime in July 2020. I have seen so many fantastic productions coming out of his experience and creativity. He is a master of show orchestration, music dramaturgy, stage design, concept art, and many other disciplines that make an event a great event. I was very touched when I saw „Lights of Hope“ – a fusion of football enthusiasm, art, and TV show. I hope to see many more of his creations in the future.
Prof. Knut Foeckler, Munich
Founding Member & Professor Service Management – Cologne International School of Design | Honorary Professor Cultural and Media Management – Hanns Eisler School of Music Berlin | Former Managing Director Marketing Philip Morris – Munich | Former Executive Vice President Deutsche Telekom AG – Bonn
I have seen, and see again in “Lights of Hope”, an urgency, a self-sacrificing effort, a focus of the highest degree in Asteris’ work. Yet, it is not this drive or passion which fascinates me, but rather the meanings and concepts that incite such complete focus on giving to others, which must be noted. Asteris is using his mastery in stage-production techniques to share an idea which he holds within himself, making this project of the highest level of Stage- Production and Art simultaneously. Such ideas, having given Asteris meaning, purpose, inspiration etc. now seem to drive him, at all costs, to giving it back to the World.
… In this work, Asteris masterfully assists us in witnessing the Olympiacos team as the present embodiment of the faith and achievement which is the intended result of the mythological messages their emblem boasts. They represent all such message-passing, “Lights of Hope” in any circumstances, and it is the Artist’s job (accomplished superlatively) to guide us to comprehending that truth ourselves; to finding the message implied in the action of the team, and how and why we should do the same …
Nana Trandou, Athens
Former CEO of DiDi Music SA | Founder, owner and CEO of High Priority Promotions PC, Greece Concert and Festival Promoter
2020 will always be remembered as stumbling block in the sport and music industry.
This year, when the majority of events in sport and music were cancelled or postponed worldwide, the Olympiacos 45th championship ceremony in Piraeus was a surprising and unexpected exception.
When I first watched the video – LIGHTS OF HOPE – I could not believe my eyes. Who would have thought this show could be possible in this very dull and pessimistic 2020 year?
A message transmitted from Piraeus to the Olympiacos FC community and to the world was a message of hope and optimism. LIGHTS OF HOPE – the name of the ceremony – is the exact description of brining this message into the world.
And we see the result – the unforgettable, created in no time, show in the full of art and emotions stadium transmitted to the entire world. I really hope we will see more shows like that created by Asteris Kutulas in the years to come.
Mike Finkelstein, Hadera (Israel)
CEO MAFTEX Light & Multimedia Solution
In July 2020, the Greek soccer club Olympiakos Piraeus won against local rival AEK Athens and became the Greek champion for the 45th time. The pma magazine reported on this in a nicely edited article in connection with the double event LIGHTS OF HOPE. In this report, it becomes clear how the director and show designer Asteris Kutulas was called to Athens only three weeks before the event and set up a spectacular double event.
Lisa Schaft, Editor for the pma magazine, Germany
LIGHTS OF HOPE for Olympiacos Piraeus was a very spectacular event. An effective and impactful use of all technical possibilities, a huge video screen with fantastic projections, unique laser graphics, a very well used light show, impressive pyro and special effects, a children’s choir as a human element. The LIGHTS OF HOPE show created a strong emotional involvement in the action on the stadium field. I have seen many stadium productions before – Asteris Kutulas as an experienced director managed to stage this TV show breathtakingly and to convey the celebration of the victory of the Olympiacos football club in a unique way: he combined tradition, symbolism, music, sport, passion, and a modern staging in the stadium of Olympiacos FC.
Owner and Managing Director
JSA Europe / Stage Company
Latvia/Riga & Ukraine/L’viv & Kyiv
Producing such an event as LIGHTS OF HOPE for Olympiacos Piraeus FC requires not only courage, but also a high level of intelligence, know-how, as well as a great deal of creativity and professionalism. I have had the privilege of working with Asteris Kutulas on various projects, so I know what I am talking about. We concert and tour promoters and festival organizers can often only be compared as „choir boys“ compared to those who realize such events.
Concert Tour Promoter & Festival Organizer
Kultur Depot GmbH, Herten, Germany
Sardinia Entertainment Srl, Posada, Italy
Art & Craft Ltd, London, United Kingdom
Johann Wolfgang Goethe already called for „more light“ to make reality more visible. The artist and producer Asteris Kutulas succeeds in doing just that. With his polymedia events, he ignites fireworks of real emotions that inspire thousands of people worldwide. With his individual signature, Asteris Kutulas is without a doubt one of the greats in the entertainment industry and the aesthetics of „Lights of Hope – Olympiacos“ is one of his polymedia masterpieces.
Cultural manager and CEO of Causales, Berlin
I got to know Asteris in 1999 as a business partner and producer of the light architect Gert Hof. Since then, I have worked with him as a technical director on over 30 events worldwide. On exciting, large-scale projects, including the Millennium events at the Acropolis in Athens and in Beijing in 2000, but also on the development of a new show format in 2016/17 based on Asteris‘ liquid staging theory.
Asteris has not only worked together with Gert Hof, but also for decades with the Greek composer legend Mikis Theodorakis. He knows both the world of art and the world of production. He incorporated this experience into his „Lights of Hope“ show – a sensational event staged at the stadium of the Olympiacos Piraeus football club to celebrate their 45th title win.
Asteris used the „bridge of music“ as the basis for his show and confidently combined a children’s choir live act with projections, laser graphics, light and pyro designs. In doing so, he put the footballers and especially the very young fans of Olympiacos Piraeus in the centre of attention and simultaneously projected onto the pitch iconically everything that stands for the values of Olympiacos Piraeus. The euphoric feedback from this show proved that the visual combination of closeness and great expanse was superbly successful.
As a filmmaker, Asteris thinks in images. As a show producer, he thinks about the effect of these images on television. I think it is very extraordinary that he has realised the football fiesta of Olympiacos Piraeus in such an artistic and emotional way. The „Lights of Hope“ event at the Piraeus stadium was a great job by both the creative and technical teams.
Technical Director at Gert Hof Productions (1999-2010)
Senior Account Manager | Special Events at Production Resource Group AG
LIGHTS OF HOPE
From Olympiacos FC to the World
Karaiskaki Stadium | Piraeus | Greece | July 19th, 2020
A Liquid Staging Show
Created & Directed by Asteris Kutulas
Music by Marios Joannou Elia
Projection Art: Ross Ashton
Laser Motion Design: Achilleas Gatsopoulos
Light Design: George Tellos
Laser Design: Daniel Brune
Pyro Design: Pavlos Nanos
Musical Director: DJ Antonis Dimitriadis
Choir of Municipal Conservatory of Piraeus
Solist: Alexandra Dermati | Chormaster: Maria Spanou
Technical Director: Aris Koudouris | Music Production: Nick Elia | Laser Programming: Merlin Schaadt | Light Programming & Operator: Makis Anastasakis | Projection Technicians: Bernd Gröger & Robert Foerster | Lighting Coordinator: Irene Samartzi
Pyro & Fireworks: Nanos Fireworks Greece | Laser Equipment: laserfabrik GmbH | Local Production, Light & Sound Equipment: Tempo Events | Logistics: Oliver Schulze & Uwe Foerster
Many thanks to Olympiacos FC & NOVA TV
Special thanks to Penny Langka, Alexandros Karozas, Kostas Karapapas, George Mandalos, Dimitris Tsingos, Athina Gkizi, Ina Kutulas, Ralph Larmann, MEGA TV, Dimitris Koutoulas and to many others