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Space Museum takes audiences on a journey to Ancient Greece

The Hong Kong Space Museum's latest Omnimax Show "Greece: Secrets of the Past" will take audiences on an archaeological journey to uncover the buried secrets of one of the world's most enlightened societies – ancient Greece which continues to astound the world today in science, politics, philosophy, sports and art.

Screening from tomorrow (February 1) until July 31, the film probes some of the greatest lingering mysteries of this remarkable civilisation: How did the Greek empire of some 2,500 years ago flourish so fantastically? What was life like in the Golden Age of ancient Greece? And why did it suddenly fall?

One of the first stops on the journey is the world-famous island chain of Santorini, a thriving Cycladic society which was buried in 1646 BC by perhaps the most powerful volcanic eruption in history. In the film, a visceral CGI-enhanced sequence takes audiences directly into the volcanic phenomenon which carried a force equivalent to 40 atomic bombs, burying Santorini under deep layers of magma and ash. At a bustling excavation site near Akrotiri, remarkably well-preserved ruins of a Bronze Age Greek civilisation hidden beneath volcanic ash were found. It provided clues to the daily lives of the ancient Greeks, from the clothes they wore to the foods they ate. But intriguing riddles are also found on Santorini. Why have no remains of Santorini citizens, who are said to have died in the explosion, been found? And could Santorini actually have been the idyllic island of Atlantis of which the philosopher Plato wrote?

Heading out to the sparkling Aegean Sea, the film next explores another provocative idea that the birth of democracy was aided by the freedom-loving lives of Greek sailors. As early as 500 BC, the people of the Greek isles began building ships with a metal-tipped ramming prow that became the mainstay of Greece's wealth and burgeoning system of trade. It is believed that the Greek sailors' passion for exploration and new ideas helped set the stage for a society based on the values of tolerance, independence and equality.

In the world-famous port city of Athens stands the ancient Greece's most celebrated symbol of wealth, power and democratic ideals: the Parthenon - the temple erected in 447 BC to honor the goddess of wisdom, Athena. Unfortunately, only broken columns of this temple lie scattered about today. With groundbreaking computer modelling based on in-depth historical research, the film recreates what the Parthenon would have looked like in all its glory, when it was brimming with life and brilliant colors at the height of the Greek empire. Audiences will get an extraordinary chance to explore the awe-inspiring monument as it has never been seen before – including a glimpse at the long-lost 12-metre tall ivory and gold statue of Athena that once towered inside its walls.

The 47-minute Omnimax Show, "Greece: Secrets of the Past", will be screened daily at 1.30pm, 5pm and 8.30pm at the museum's Stanley Ho Space Theatre. The museum will close at 5pm on Chinese New Year's Eve (February 6). It is closed on Tuesdays (except public holidays) and the first two days of the Chinese New Year.

Tickets are available at the Space Museum Box Office and at all URBTIX outlets for $24 (front stalls) and $32 (stalls). Full-time students, senior citizens and people with disabilities will receive a half-price concession.

The Space Museum is located at 10 Salisbury Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon. For further information, call 2721 0226 or visit the website at .

Ends/Thursday, January 31, 2008
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