CULTURE

Opera singer Agnes Baltsa shows big heart

She came from Bern like a ray of sunshine. She has landmark years behind her and a heavy schedule set out for this year. A great voice and soul and always looking glamorous, Agnes Baltsa has volunteered to appear along with the Athens State Orchestra, under the baton of maestro Nikos Athineos, on Monday, January 14. The event, scheduled to take place at the Athens Concert Hall, will benefit a common project shared by the Kallipateira Panhellenic Women’s Sports Society and the Institute of Immigration Policy (IMEPO). The upcoming event opens the new year with a most inspiring sports-humanitarian cause – demonstrating support and understanding for all Greek and foreign athlete immigrants. Proceeds from Monday’s unique concert will go toward the construction of the first Diagnostic and Prevention Clinic for Young Athletes at the Sotiria hospital, on a plot of land donated in an agreement with the hospital’s board and the Ministry of Health and Social Solidarity. In the presence of the world-renowned, Lefkada-born mezzo-soprano, the event was presented at a recent joint press conference by the president of the Kallipateira board of directors and Fair Play ambassador to the Council of Europe, Katerina Panagopoulou, and IMEPO president Alexandros Zavos. Panagopoulou spoke fervently about the importance of the new center in the context of preventive health control for future athletes. She also thanked the National Bank of Greece and its president, Takis Arapoglou, for acting as the concert’s principal sponsor, as well state TV channel ET-1, the event’s communication sponsor. The new center’s construction is the result of an agreement signed by the Kallipateira Society and IMEPO. Funding for its construction will be raised exclusively by the activities of the two associations. The first step is the upcoming concert, which is taking place thanks to Baltsa’s free-of-charge participation. «Her voice,» noted Panagopoulou, «will not only reach our souls, but will also send our message to every single conscience envisioning a better world.»