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Theodorakis’ death a ‘great loss for all who love his country,’ says Irish president

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The death of composer Mikis Theodorakis “represents a great loss for Greece and for all who love his country,” Ireland’s President Michael D. Higgins said in a statement on Thursday.

Describing him as an “artist who was uniquely and inextricably linked to the story of Greece itself,” Higgins said Theodorakis “will be remembered not only as one of Greece’s finest composers, whose music traveled all over the world, but also for his role in protecting Greek democracy during the military rule in his country.”

Theodorakis, he said, “used his work to reflect his passion for, and commitment to, the country he loved so dearly and which mourns him today.”

The Irish president also referred to the Greek composer’s adaptation of Brendan Behan’s poem ‘The Laughing Boy,’ saying it represented “the Greek people’s desire for freedom and democracy and their struggle against military dictatorship.”