Associate Artist Residence Scheme 2021 launched by the Rialto Theatre

Against all odds, and despite its suspended programme of events, the Rialto Theatre continues to support local artistic creation and production by launching in 2021 new programmes for synergies with Cyprus-based artists. 


Following the second FlashArt 2021 open call for submissions of new works and collaborations, Rialto’s next project up is the Associate Artist Residence Scheme.  The Theatre will assign to the selected artists the development of a project that meets its broader cultural development objectives through innovative and modern forms of artistic expression. The events will be focused on the audience’s cultural education and development.


Following the play development workshop titled Develop. Develop Again. Develop Better, which was implemented last year by Paris Erotokritou in collaboration with director Maria Kyriacou and writers Maria Ioannou, Avgi Lili, Stefanos Stavridis and Yiorgos Trillides, as well as with actors Elena Kallinikou, Yiorgos Kyriakou, Panayiota Papageorgiou and Vasilis Charalambous, the Associate Artist Residence Scheme is re-launched this year with a project titled walking by Maria Varnakkidou and Constantina Andreou. Through a modern and inventive process, the two artists will create an experiential recorded walk/performance around the Heroes’ Square and the Rialto Theatre, which will narrate, recall old and create new images and experiences. 


Starting from architectural and memorial sites, as well as artistic interventions, walking through the narrow streets of the area, gazing at the balconies with the laundry lines and the blossoming plants, the two artists will search for a cultural identity constructed in the course of time, while creating, through historical and social research, an experiential walk during which participants will feel the pulse of the Square and the surrounding area. 


Archival research, interviews with historians and artists, workshops and open discussions, mapping and audiovisual production will take place prior to the project’s implementation. 


The two artists will be inspired and influenced by stories and events already written about the city of Limassol, but also by things yet to be discovered. The project aspires to involve local artists through interviews and workshops that will be providing material for the creation of this experiential recorded walk. All of the project’s stages will take place between January and September, with the first walks expected to take place before the end of 2021. The objective is to create a timeless material combining the history of the area with Arts and Technology. 


Maria Varnakkidou and Constantina Andreou collaborated with the Rialto Theatre back in July, during the first FlashArt edition, on the project Come Together, an experiential work inspired by the lockdown. 

Maria Varnakkidou studied Contemporary Theatre at Brunel University, London, and graduated from the Royal Holloway, London with an MA in Theatre Directing.  

Her latest work, titled Lemons Lemons Lemons Lemons Lemons by Sam Steiner (produced by Fresh Target Theatre Ensemble) was scheduled to be staged in December 2020 but was postponed due to the COVID restrictions. 

She has also directed the following devised theatre productions: Come Together (2020), RAM (2020), ROUTES (2019) and In-decent (2017). Together with Kyros Papavassiliou she co-directed the devised play titled The Gaze. She curated and directed the performance The Vagina Monologues (2012). 

She also co-wrote with Kyros Papavassiliou the fiction feature film Impressions of a Drowned Man (2015). 

As assistant director, she collaborated with Maria Kyriakou on the play Saved (staged by Satiriko Theatre, 2018) and The Omission of the Family Coleman (THOC, 2017). She also worked as assistant director to Marios Ioannou on the theatrical play Uniting the Mediterranean Sea (Pafos 2017). 

Maria has delivered theatre workshops in Cyprus and Europe. 


Constantina Andreou studied Theatre Design for Performance at Wimbledon College of Art and graduated from Nottingham Trent University with an MA in Art Direction. Based in Cyprus, she works as a set and costume designer for Theatre, Dance Theatre, Dance, Film and Advertising. She has collaborated with various independent theatre companies, as well as with Cyprus Theatre Organisation on the following plays: Things I Know to be True (directed by Maria Kyriakou), Stella with the Red Gloves (directed by Constantinos Arvanitakis), The Smoking Dog (directed by Sotos Stavrakis), A Little More (directed by Thanasis Georgiou & Fotis Nicolaou). She took part in THOC’s “251” artistic team in 2019 and participated in the installation titled Rooms. She also participated in Faust (directed by Stefanos Drousiotis), part of Kypria International Festival. Moreover, she collaborated with the following theatre companies: Χ-it Dance Theatre, Persona, Pests, Maskarini, Act Theatre, Theatro Lexi, Theatro Ena, Theatro Dentro, Theatro Versus and took part in numerous other independent productions.  



Constantina Andreou was nominated for Best Set and Costume Designer (2014-2015) for the production A Little More, for Best Costume Designer (2009-2011) for the production The Smoking Dog and for Best Upcoming Artist 2019.