Music and song to benefit historical establishment at the Herod Atticus

A celebration of history and contribution unites the music of Mikis Theodorakis and the voice of Mario Frangoulis at the Herod Atticus Theater next week with a concert dedicated to the Great School of the Nation. The performance, which will take place on Tuesday, May 11, marks the first time such an event takes place in Greece. «I was honored to be asked by the Patriarchate and the Great School of the Nation to perform a concert in order for the proceeds to go to the Great School of the Nation and to all its causes and events,» said Frangoulis to Kathimerini English Edition. «For 550 years they have preserved the knowledge and traditions of the Greek people, obviously through religion as well, and keeping the nation together not only in Greece but also outside of Greece.» Ever since its establishment by Patriarch Gennadios in 1454, the school has been catering to Istanbul’s Greek community, with professors teaching history, philosophy and Greek traditions and customs. Situated in Phanar, the school was fraternized with the Ziridis Schools and the Ziridis Alumni Associations in 2000. On its red-brick, 19th century premises, there are currently 54 pupils taught by 14 Greek and six Turkish teachers. In the first part of the concert, Frangoulis will be joined by up-and-coming American soprano Meagan Miller and British singer Jeff Leyton (known for his role as Jean Valjean in «Les Miserables» in London and throughout Britain) to interpret Theodorakis works in no less than six languages. «Theodorakis has been a great master and a great teacher of music throughout the years, throughout his whole career making great music speak to the hearts of people, not just to the Greek people but to the whole world, because the messages are very clear, they are very heartfelt, they come from real situations being political or personal and all his songs create part of our heritage in Greece,» said Frangoulis. In the second part of the evening, Odysseas Elytis’s «Axion Esti» set to music by Theodorakis, will be interpreted by a new generation of artists. Frangoulis will be joined by highly promising 25-year-old baritone Giorgos Matheakakis, while Constantinos Markoulakis, one of the new generation’s most accomplished actors, will narrate. At the Herod Atticus Theater, the ERT (Greek Radio and TV) Contemporary Music Orchestra, the Mikis Theodorakis Orchestra and the ERT Choir will be conducted by Andreas Pylarinos. «I’m sure in the end and with all this excitement and if the audience really want him to, Mikis might surprise us with a song or two,» said Frangoulis. Herod Atticus Theater, Tuesday, May 11, at 9 p.m. For ticket reservations: Hellenic Festival box office, 39 Panepistimiou, tel 210.928.2900; Metropolis stores and Half Note Productions, 3 Terzopoulou, Aghia Paraskevi, tel 210.600.3693.

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