CULTURE

A Song for Manos’ fund-raiser tonight for new arts complex in capital’s north

With his mind focused on Manos Hadjidakis ahead of a fund-raising concert tonight at the open-air Lycabettus Theater, classical guitarist Vangelis Boudounis, one of the evening’s performers, underscored the legacy of the late composer’s work during a recent news conference ahead of the show. «In the era we live in, the music of Hadjidakis is a star. We miss him increasingly by the day,» Boudounis said. «Manos was a simple person both in his work and life,» added the artist, who will perform alongside fellow guitarist Maro Razi. Tonight’s show, «A Song For Manos,» whose funds will go toward establishing an arts center in the Halandri district, also features the gifted vocalist Savina Yiannatou, whose career has blossomed on the world music circuit in recent years, the Patras Orchestra conducted by Saulius Sondeckis, and a string group, Oi Kitharistes. The performance has been co-produced by the Culture Ministry-sponsored Hellenic Festival and ACS, the American Community Schools of Athens. The prospective arts complex in the capital’s north will be equipped to host concerts, theatrical productions, conferences, exhibitions and various other cultural events, while also fostering Greek-American cultural relations and catering to the needs of ACS students. It could also be offered by its operator for needs linked to the Athens 2004 Olympics. Also present at the news conference, the US ambassador to Greece, Thomas Miller, remarked that he was looking forward to tonight’s concert. «I feel particularly glad that I’ll be at Lycabettus Theater to hear the music of Hadjidakis,» noted Miller. He has been appointed honorary chairman of an association established to foster the art center’s development. The concert’s first part will include selections of popular Hadjidakis songs such as «Pame Mia Volta sto Feggari,» «Odos Oneiron,» and «Kapou Yparchei I Agapi Mou,» performed by the guitar duo and orchestra. The evening will begin with «A Song For Manos,» which Boudounis began writing on the day Hadjidakis passed away, June 15, 1994. The second part will feature Yiannatou interpreting excerpts from Hadjidakis’s «Roman Agora,» «Matomenos Gamos,» and other works, backed by Boudounis, Razi, the Patras Orchestra and a mandolinist, Constantinos Constantopoulos. Another Boudounis tribute for Hadjidakis, «Waltz for Manos,» will be included in the repertoire’s second part. The performance begins at 9 p.m.