A moving ceremony at the Megaron Hall in Athens
Mikis Theodorakis's life and work can soon be read as an open book, for the composer handed his personal archives over to the "Lilian Voudouri" Music Library on Tuesday 16 December 1997.
Sixty years have passed since Theodorakis wrote his first song in Patra (Peloponese) in 1937. His archive documents include now
songs, symphonies, oratorios, operas, music written for the film and the stage, political books and articles, reports, and essays.
Christos Lambrakis, president of the Athens Symphony Hall, said this is the first time a living artist has entrusted his archives to the public.
Deeply moved, Theodorakis thanked his friends, who had come from all over the world to be present at this ceremony at the Megaron Concert Hall, for their support. He had then special words of thank: "Through these endless years, two people have dedicated their lives to preserving all of my works : my father Georgios Theodorakis and my wife Myrto".
Theodorakis said that he gave his archives to the music library fearing that a natural disaster might destroy them: "There couldn't be a more exciting experience for me, than that of having other people sing or hear my music", was his conclusion.
The ceremony was followed by a small concert. Sophia Michailidou sang two of the melodies from the ballet "Zorba", The orchestra "La Camerata", conducted by Loukas Karytinos, gave an exciting performance of the scherzo of Theodorakis's "Sinfonietta", with a wonderful dialogue between Stella Gadedi (flute) and Alexandra Papastefanou (piano).
The same flutist, together with Styros Mourikis, clarinet, and Sokratis Avtis, trumpet, were the soloist of the "Adagio" that Theodorakis composed in 1993 for the victims of the war in Bosnia. Mikis himself conducted this piece and made his performance a deeply moving musical moment.
© 1997 by Guy Wagner
Theodorakis conducts Theodorakis