Virginia Beach Cultural Affairs Department: 2024 Season of Global Music Series VBGIGs

Mediterranean Blues featuring Melos Sunday, March 17, 2 pm, Sandler Family Campus

The return of Virginia Beach Cultural Affairs Department’s VBGIGs (Virginia Beach Globally Inspired Gatherings), a series of free and low-cost public performances taking place throughout the city in public spaces and performance venues will have its first performance of the season at the Simon Family JCC on the Sandler Family Campus.

In alignment with the City’s arts strategic plan, Arts Plan 2030, VBGIGS aims to bring world-class, culturally rooted performing artists to Virginia Beach residents in their neighborhoods and nearby venues. VBGIGs events are family friendly. In fact, kids who attend will receive a VBGIGs passport and collectible destination stickers to track which world regions they’ve “visited” at different VBGIGs performances.

In partnership with United Jewish Federation of Tidewater, the Greek music duo Melos will celebrate Rebetiko music, a style sometimes referred to as the “Greek Blues,” which originated in Greece’s marginalized communities, such as refugees and the urban working class of the 1920s and 1930s. It captures the feelings of oppression, despair, hope, and love like no other music.

Given its connection to refugees and marginalized communities, it should come as no surprise that Rebetiko has a rich history in Greece’s Jewish community. One of Greece’s most famous Rebetiko singers, Rosa Eskenazi, came from a poor Sephardic Jewish family in Constantinople.

Melos (which means “melody” in Greek), consists of Spyros Koliavasilis and his protégé, Niko Mitreone.

This free, family-friendly concert will include a selection of songs followed by a meet and greet. It is presented in partnership with the Greek Embassy of Washington, D.C., and the United Jewish Federation of Tidewater.

All VBGIGs performances are free to attend.

For more information, visit or email

Future VBGIGS event include:

Festa Brasil featuring Dendê & Band
Sunday, April 14, 10 am – 2 pm
Virginia MOCA, 2200 Parks Ave.

Classical Dance of India featuring Padmarani Rasiah Cantu
Saturday, May 4, 2 pm
Meyera E. Oberndorf Central Library
4100 Virginia Beach Blvd.

Amor a Mexico: An Evening with the Grammy Award-Winning Villalobos Brothers
Friday, August 10, 7 pm
Zeiders American Dream Theater
4509 Commerce St.