MANASIS School of Greek Dance and Culture prepare for their upcoming Destination Patrida 2024 project, one that director Dimosthenis Manasis says is a “dream come true”.

Destination Patrida 2024 will see a select cohort of students embark on a one-month journey across Greece.

The project has been officially recognised and endorsed by the Australian Government’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) through the Australian Embassy in Greece, and also through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Greece), by the Office of the General Secretariat of Greeks Abroad and Public Diplomacy.

UNESCO’s Council of International Dance (CID) will be inducting the dance school as an official member at a ceremony during its 61st World Congress of Dance Research, hosted at the Dora Stratou Dance Theatre in Athens.

In a statement, Manasis extended his appreciation to the thousands of students and their families, who have been involved since its establishment.

He said they are “the foremost reason our ‘dance family’ has continued to grow and evolve, gifting our school’s founder, my father Alkis Manasis, and myself, the opportunity to make our life’s passion, our life’s work.”

“We couldn’t have done this on our own, nor did we want to.”

He also thanked for all the external support they have received over the years as a private school not eligible for government funding.

From mid-June to mid-July, a group of dance students, now dubbed the “Famous Fifteen”, will be travelling, performing, and experiencing all that Greece has to offer.

“Through Destination Patrida, this incredible cohort of young Greek-Australians become the formal representatives of everything that ‘we are’, and everything we have accomplished in the diaspora as Greeks on the opposite side of our planet,” Manasis said.

“The next link in a chain of endless, intangible cultural heritage and ancestry, which has been preserved and transmitted to yet another generation- albeit 15,000km away from our πατρίδα (homeland).”