The NRL Melbourne Storm vs Brisbane Broncos Multicultural Round at AAMI Park on Saturday celebrated cultural diversity. Among the community groups were Pacific Islanders, Cook Islanders, Maoris and Indians doing something they don’t normally do at a rugby game: dancing the Sirtaki to the music of the Zorba!
They were led to join in with the music and rhythms of Greece’s celebrated song and dance by members of the MANASIS School of Greek Dance and Culture who were invited to represent the Greek-Australian community for the second time at the Multicultural round.
The MANASIS senior dancers dressed in traditional costumes provided the pre-game entertainment on Gosch’s Paddock performing folk dances from Northern Greece. They then took to the centre of AAMI Stadium before tens of thousands of spectators to dance the Sirtaki as the sounds of Zorba announced Melbourne Storm’ s thunderous entry to the ground.
The MANASIS dance school’s mission is to promote Hellenism to the wider community and they have previously performed at the AFL Grand Final and world-football games at Etihad Stadium. Now, they are on a roll with the NRL.
Melbourne Storm put on a show of their own for the local dancers and rugby fans and beat the Brisbane Broncos 32-16.
“While all the cultural organisations and participants gave their best, I’d like to believe that MANASIS and their Zorba gave the Storm the energy they needed for the win!,” said the director of the school, Dimosthenis Manasis after the game.