George Soffos teaches students at bouzouki workshop.
TARPON SPRINGS - On Saturday, Oct. 6, from 6 11 p.m., the city of Tarpon Springs presents Night in the Islands – a free event on the world famous Sponge Docks on Dodecanese Boulevard between Hope and Athens streets.
Enjoy Greek music, dancing and dining. And beginning in October, free Greek dance lessons are offered from 6 to 7 p.m.
The event features live music by Ellada, an exciting Greek band composed of three of the most accomplished Greek musicians in the state. Ellada will perform nisiotika, the lively traditional music of the Greek islands, as well as old and new Greek favorites. Ellada includes George Soffos, bouzouki; Elias Poulos, vocals; and Dino Theofilos, keyboard.
Night in the Islands also will be offered Saturdays, Nov. 3, and looking to 2013, April 13, May 11, June 1, July 13, Aug. 3, Sept. 7, Oct. 5, and Nov. 2. The festival is supported in part by a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts.
Tarpon Springs Cultural Treasures presents a series of workshops in Greek bouzouki for beginning and advanced students by George Soffos.
Soffos will give workshops on Sundays, Oct. 7, 21 and Nov. 11 through Dec. 16 at Heritage Museum, 100 Beekman Lane in Craig Park. The Oct. 21 workshop will be held at the Cultural Center, 101 S. Pinellas Ave.
Beginner workshops are from 2 to 3 p.m. with immediate workshops from 3 to 4 p.m. Students should bring an instrument. A few bouzoukis will be available to beginning students.
Soffos is often considered the best bouzouki player born outside of Greece. His repertoire includes folk genres such as rembetika, nisiotika and other regional styles, as well as popular and classical Greek works. Since age 16, Soffos has entertained audiences in Greek night clubs and large venues throughout the world. He received a Folk Heritage Award from the Florida Department of State in March 2011.