CULTURE

A 2004 tribute to Mikis Theodorakis

The official music recording for the Athens Olympic Games 2004, which will have widespread global circulation, has been dedicated to Mikis Theodorakis and his work, it was announced at a recent press conference, where the rerecording of the composer’s entire repertoire, «Remasters 2003-05,» by EMI-Minos, was also presented. The rerecording of Theodorakis’s opus began just a few months ago and is expected to be completed by December 2005. Ten CDs and a box with three albums are already in circulation under the title «First Cut: 1960-2000.» Each of the three CDs covers specific periods of the artist’s work (1960-1964, 1965-1974 and 1975-2000). All the pieces have been reworked with digital sound technology and include texts containing both information from the original album as well as new writings. «These rerecordings are an opportunity to look back into the past,» said Theodorakis. «Each album represents a part of my life, not just as a musician, but as a man,» he said. The composer took the opportunity to reminisce about the past and comment on the music industry today. «There was a time when commercial success and quality went hand in hand. The junta destroyed this. We were lucky. We were conducting an experiment – the older generation, Hadjidakis and I, and the younger, such as Loizos, Savvopoulos, Leondis and Markopoulos. We combined quality with commerciality. Our sales were something like 70 percent of the record companies’ total and people sang our songs and looked at themselves in the mirror without being ashamed. Young people were dancing to Seferis, Ritsos and Leivaditis, to zeibekiko, and they were having fun. «There was a poet, a lyricist, a composer and the singers. In the 1980s, they were all shot out of the water and only the singer remained, the so-called ‘star system.’ I have spent some of the best times of my life in the recording studio. It’s magic. You walk in there full of ideas to breathe life into something that may live on for years…»