Greek National Opera Announces 2021 Lineup


The Greek National Opera has announced its 2021 lineup, a tribute programme to the bicentennial of the Greek Revolution of 1821, which is made possible by a grant from the Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF).

The Greek National Opera 2021

Distinguished Greek and foreign artists collaborate with the GNO ensembles on new opera, ballet and music theatre productions and concerts, attempting to raise questions and open discussions about the Greek Revolution as a historic event with a global impact, which is connected to the great revolutions that led to the formation of the modern-day great independent nation-states like, for example, the French and the American Revolutions.

Great repertoire operas such as Giordano's Andrea Chénier, Mozart's Le nozze di Figaro, Shostakovich's Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk, Puccini's Tosca, operas of the Ionian Music School such as Paolo Carrer's Despo and Frossini, Vivaldi's baroque opera Juditha triumphans, Skalkottas' Greek Dances and Mikis Theodorakis' Zorba the Greek by the GNO Ballet, but also Manolis Kalomiris' The Symphony of "Levendia", film music works about the American Revolution, and the family opera The Magic Pillows compose the multi-dimensional tribute programme that will be presented at the Stavros Niarchos Hall, the Odeon of Herodes Atticus and other unexpected places, such as, among others, the courtyard of the Metropolitan Cathedral of Athens.

As part of the 2021 bicentennial of the Greek Revolution, the GNO has prepared a great retrospective of top Greek composers of different schools and idioms. In 2021 it will present important works of Manolis Kalomiris, Paolo Carrer, and Nikos Skalkottas, as well as works by younger composers such as Calliope Tsoupaki, George Dousis, Nikos Xydakis, Martha Mavroidi, Giorgos Tsontakis, Alexandros Mouzas, Dimitra Trypani and more.

Starting from 2021 and for the next three years, the Greek National Opera will celebrate the work of distinguished Greek composer Mikis Theodorakis, with the presentation of a large part of his great works.

As part of the three-year cycle dedicated to Mikis Theodorakis, in 2021 the GNO will present the works Axion EstiZorba the GreekSecond Symphony, The Song of the Earth Second Symphony, The Song of the Earth and the concert Songs of Struggle at the Stavros Niarchos Hall, and the song cycles Asikiko Poulaki and Songs for Toddlers and Young Children on the Alternative Stage.

The first part of the cycle in 2021 will be completed with the presentation of Mikis Theodorakis' works in the next online festivals, and by the Hellenic Broadcasting Corporation (ERT), which will broadcast the concerts Dionysus and Epitaph, that were video recorded last November on the Alternative Stage.

In parallel with the tribute programme, the new programme of the GNO at the Stavros Niarchos Hall and the Odeon of Herodes Atticus is completed by new, ambitious productions that were suspended due to the pandemic and will come to meet their audience in 2021, but also with recitals of acclaimed performers, revivals of earlier productions and important co-productions.

These productions are made possible by a grant from the Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF) [] to enhance the Greek National Opera's artistic outreach.

Τhe second commission of GNO and NEON's joint project The Artist on the Composer brings Yorgos Lanthimos' new work, Marina Abramović presents The Seven Deaths of Maria Callas, the GNO Ballet presents the classic Don Quixote in a new production, while a new, ambitious production of Verdi's Rigoletto comes to the Odeon of Herodes Atticus.

The distinguished tenor of our times Jonas Kaufmann will present an opera gala at the Odeon of Herodes Atticus, while the famous soprano Sonya Yoncheva will give a unique recital in the Stavros Niarchos Hall.

Commissions by the Alternative Stage aspiring to leave their mark on the fertile artistic fermentation of the contemporary and timeless meaning of the 1821 bicentennial include the music theatre productions Kolokotronis Contemplates the Future. Women Are Preparing for the Revolution. And I'll Be Thinking of Something by Michail Marmarinos and Akillas Karazisis, Domna's Song by Martha Mavroidi, Maro Vasiliadou and Maria Magkanari, Martha: A story from Missolonghi by Nikos Xydakis and Dionysis Kapsalis, and Capodistrias: Monodrama of a secret life by Calliope Tsoupaki, the feature film-installation The City and the City by Christos Passalis and Syllas Tzoumerkas, the multimedia production Set in Time in Space by Giorgos Poulios and the concert Rigas' Flute: From absolutism to the Revolution by Dimitris Kountouras and Panos Iliopoulos.

The main volume of commemorative commissions by the Alternative Stage is divided into three large thematic cycles.

The first cycle, Odes to Byron, curated by composer Alexandros Mouzas, pays tribute to the emblematic Romantic poet and philhellene Lord Byron. It includes the new music theatre productions Shades in Hades by Alexandros Mouzas, Ask Ada by Yannis Kyriakides, and The Air of Greece by George Tsontakis, the concert The Cornelian Secret with new works by Ioannis Angelakis, Aspasia Nasopoulou and Orestis Papaioannou, Lord Byron and Isaac Nathan's Hebrew Melodies, and the shadow puppet theatre production Byron in Greece by Athos Danellis.

The second cycle, The Revolution Through the Eyes of the Other, portrays the reactions of the international community to the 1821 Revolution and includes Turkish composer Kamran Ince's oratorio Jus soli, and the music theatre productions Such A Beautiful and Just Case: Haiti / Greece / 1821 and Pilgrimages by Constantinos Hatzis.

The third cycle, Mikis Theodorakis, set to extend over three years, includes the song cycle Asikiko Poulaki.

A special place in the bicentennial programme of the Alternative Stage is held by two big curatorial projects: Synthesis, curated by choreographer Tzeni Argyriou and visual artist Vassilis Gerodimos, and A Greek Songbook, curated by composer Kornilios Selamsis, which are both implemented in collaboration with numerous creators, researchers and performers, among whom are Minas Antypas, Efi Birba, Nicoleta Chatzopoulou, Argyro Chioti, Coti K., Foivos Delivorias, Maro Fasouli, Christiana Galanopoulou, Nalyssa Green, Alkinoos Ioannidis, Kitt Johnson, Dimitris Kamarotos, Pavlos Katsivelis, K.Bhta, Armin Kerber, Apostolos Kitsos, Petros Klampanis, Hara Kotsali, Lolek, Babis Makridis, Ermis Malkotsis, Sofia Mavragani, Miguel Ángel Melgares, Christos Papadopoulos, Dimitri Papageorgiou, Michalis Paraskakis, Pavlos Pavlidis, Giorgos Poulios, Filippos Sakagian, Evi Saoulidou, Aris Servetalis, Stavroula Siamou, Michalis Siganidis, Fotis Siotas, Nancy Stamatopoulou, Petros Touloudis, Nicolas Tzortzis, James Wiley, Savina Yannatou, Fanis Zachopoulos, Sofia Zafeiriou and more.

Along with the bicentennial programme, a series of new, bold Alternative Stage productions that were suspended due to the pandemics, revivals of earlier productions and international co-productions arrive to the Alternative Stage hoping to meet their audience in 2021: Kharálampos Goyós' new opera Anthony's Death, based on the TV anime series Candy Candy and philosopher Slavoj Žižek, Marc Monnet and Arno Fabre's opera-ballet Bibilolo in co-production with Printemps des Arts de Monte-Carlo (Monaco), GRAME - Centre national de création musicale (France) and Cerise Music, the new production for children and young audiences of Nikos Kypourgos' popular work Silence, the King Is Listening, as well as the renewed return of the modern dance triptych Human Behaviour complete the annual programme.

Composers Antonis Anissegos, Giorgos Koumendakis, Dimitris Terzakis and Dimitra Trypani, conductors Gregory Charette, Miltos Logiadis, Vladimiros Symeonidis and Nicolas Vassiliou, the GNO Ballet, the National Symphony Orchestra and Chorus of the Hellenic Broadcasting Corporation (ERT), the Ergon Ensemble, the Estudiantina of Nea Ionia under the musical direction of Andreas Katsigiannis, the female vocal ensemble chórεs under the musical direction of Marina Satti, directors Theo Abazis, Themelis Glynatsis, Dimitris Karantzas and Thomas Moschopoulos, choreographers Alexis Fousekis, Ioanna Garagouni, Ermira Goro, Ioannis Mandafounis and Konstantinos Rigos, set and costume designers Magdalini Avgerinou, Christos Delidimos, Artemis Flessa, Kathrin Krumbein, Kenny MacLellan, Yiorgos Mesimeris, Pavlos Thanopoulos, Alexia Theodorakis,Evangelia Therianou, Ioanna Tsami and Mary Tsangari, singersHaris Andrianos,Tassis Christoyannis, Irini Derebei, Georgios Iatrou, Vassilis Kavayas, Christos Kechris, Vangelis Maniatis, Dimitris Nalbantis,Michaela Riener, Marios Sarantidis, Timos Sirlantzis, Sotiris Triantis, Thodoris Voutsikakis and Vassia Zacharopoulou, and actors Christos Doulos,Lambros Grammatikos, Evangelia Karakatsani, Syrmo Keke, Lydia Koniordou, Christos Loulis, Ektoras Lygizos, Vasilis Milionis,Electra Nikolouzou, Aglaia Pappa, Alexandros Psychramis, Mariam Rukhadze,Maria Skoula, Dimitris Tsiklis and Roubini Vasilakopoulouare only some of the important artists who will work together for the implementation of the Alternative Stage's programme for 2021.

In spite of the pandemic-related uncertainty, the GNO will carry out its programme -so long as the restrictive measures allow for it- either before live audiences or through video recorded performances broadcast on GNO TV.

You can watch the 2021’s programme presentation here:

You can watch the spot for 2021’s programme here:

You can find the full programme of 2021, but also, among others, the address of H.E. the President of the Hellenic Republic Mrs. Katerina Sakellaropoulou, the address of the Minister of Culture and Sports Mrs. Lina Mendoni, and the address of the Co-President of the SNF Mr. Andreas Dracopoulos, on the new microsite of the GNO:

Lead donor to the GNO & the 2021 bicentennial of the Greek Revolution: Stavros Niarchos Foundation

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