Ioustini Koutsogianni: From contemporary theatre to creative computing
Ioustini loved the spotlight from a young age - “I liked the attention from the audience… I started dancing when I was 6, and then I discovered acting and find the process very interesting, especially pretending to be someone - I find it very therapeutic.”
Studying Contemporary Theatre and Performance course at Wimbledon College of Arts has given her the opportunity to expand her practice and try other things in addition to performing on stage. From writing, to directing to working in sound, she has come to realise that she enjoys these things more than being on stage: “There’s a sense of freedom in [exploring] your art. When you’re on stage, you just do what you’re told... but behind the scenes I get to express myself more. I’ve always enjoyed writing, so I get to connect the behind the scenes with other things I enjoy. And I find that you can still be in the spotlight from there too!”
Whilst Ioustini is very open and likes to explore various themes in her creative process, she is fond of expressing herself through her Greek culture, namely ancient mythology and folklore. “Greek mythology is known worldwide and yet I don’t think there are many Greek people in the industry away from Greece who have the knowledge to explore this topic, so I enjoy saying how things are. There’s a great connection and relationship between contemporary theatre and something as traditional as Greek theatre.” At the same time, she also likes to contrast her practice exploring the reality of life, looking specifically at mental health.
As Ioustini looks into the future, she not only wants to continue exploring these themes but also continue experimenting with filming. “I find beauty in filming, and I see myself doing something related to a camera and cinematography”, she says. Ioustini thrives in experimentation as she’s able to see what she enjoys most within the realm of theatre.
Holding a curiosity around technology and its connections with contemporary theatre, Ioustini’s next experiment is with creative computing, as she sets out to do a diploma in it. “I think it’s very interesting to see the connection between computing and contemporary theatre and connect technology with something as traditional as theatre.”