Keeping a Culture Alive in America
Stories of the life-changing effects of the annual Greek Orthodox Folk Dance and Choral Festival or “FDF” are told through interviews with participants, past and present. Since the first festival in California in 1976, FDF has hosted thousands of young people who compete as teams, performing the traditional songs and dances of their ancestors – and learning how to manage an event in the process. Watch as young people from across the U.S. and countries around the world come together to sing, dance, worship, make friends, “go for the gold,” and most of all, help preserve a heritage.
Voices of FDF
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Kefi: The Story of FDF, the Greek Orthodox Folk Festival explores the impact of a cultural phenomenon that annually brings together thousands of young people from seven states in the Western U.S. Scores of teams compete for top honors in Greek folk dance, song and costuming.
In interview after interview, as well as the music and dance, the passion for FDF comes through, from those who were there at the beginning to today's dancers, singers and directors. It's also helped three generations of families throughout the West build friendships, careers, and marriages.
"It's been my dream to create a record of FDF since its earliest days. The stories of generations of FDFers, the roots of FDF, and what it has meant to our Greek Orthodox faith and heritage are all woven into the film. One of my dreams was that our FDF program might inspire other ethnic groups to try to revitalize their ancestral roots."
Peter E. Preovolos
"FDF was started by kids who thought they could dance as well as the professionals who got paid to dance at their church festival. A second-generation Greek-American business entrepreneur and his family supported them and the clergy celebrated a ministry in the fellowship that blossomed as FDF grew. Government leaders, Greek embassy representatives and academics have praised FDF.
Kefi is a diaspora story that, in my opinion, could only happen in America.
Many thanks to all the filmmaking pros, interviewees and dancers who figuratively joined hands to make Kefi, and to the Preovolos family for their generosity in supporting the project. I hope the spirit, the kefi, of FDF comes across on the screen."
“FDF is unlike any other event because it fosters an environment where people become one giant Greek family."
- Hellenic News of America
"The performances…provide a model for these diaspora communities, as well as non-Greek performing groups."
- Anthony Shay
“If anyone says, ‘I’ll show you a star,’ I would say to them, ‘Come to FDF and I will show you a constellation’."
- His Eminence Archbishop Demetrios
Retired Primate of The Greek Orthodox Church in America
"This may be one of the best youth programs in the country.”
- John Gumas
Elios Society President
The National Herald