ATHENS – Greek-Armenian actress Romina Katsikian exudes charisma and enthusiasm. A veteran of TV, theater and film although she is still in her thirties, Katsikian’s latest project is a hilarious series of TikTok comedy sketches titled “I went on a date with…” (@iwentonadate). The short 45-second vignettes always involve Katsikian in closeup talking to her on-line audience as if they were her best friends about various dates scenarios. These include going out with a porn star; a guy overconfident of his abilities in bed, and another who “disappeared…or died,” i.e. he never called her back.
The show has a bit of a “Sex in the City” ring to it, but Katsikian quickly makes the material her own. In fact, she successfully channels a bit of both the Samantha and Carrie characters from that hit US series — no small shakes for any comedienne, but she pulls it off. The sketches are simple and lovely — the actress dispenses date and sex advice the way others peel an orange or discuss the day’s weather.
Katsikian herself is a slim, fabulously intelligent woman with looks at once feminine but androgynous that lend her extra points on the sexy meter — maybe that is one more reason the skits are so successful. When discussing this series, Katsikian notes: “Furthermore, the taboo of women going on many dates, meeting men and having sex with some of them, was something that I felt needed to be faced.” The show opened up a variety of scenarios for her to respond to as a woman and as an actress. The TikTok channel is in fact a continuation of a YouTube channel called “I went on a Date with a Guy” which she discontinued in favor of the shorter 45-second TikTok clips.
Born in Rome — hence her name, to fourth- and fifth-generation Greek Armenians, Katsikian has led a cosmopolitan life. This has included moving to Egypt as a child for six years and then to Switzerland due to her father’s profession. “Home,” she says firmly, “was and has always been Athens, Greece.”
Katsikian attended English-speaking schools in both Egypt (Cairo American college) and Greece (St. Lawrence College) before studying drama and English literature at Brunel University in London, so she is fluent in English, Greek and Armenian. Katsikian has been acting since the age of 12, having entered competitions here in Greece as well as winning the Drama Prize at St. Lawrence College. Her work includes a successful theatre play, a sold-out comedy titled “Remind Me Why We Came Here Again,” where she played a conservative, snobby woman who attends a nudist beach.
But most of Katsikian’s work is in fact quite serious and deals with the marginalized in one way or another, perhaps a result of her international background and her Armenian roots. She most notably played a Muslim woman on a Greek TV show called “Ethniki Ellados.”