Songs of Struggle
Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center
Songs of Struggle

Concerts - Mikis Theodorakis

June 2021
Δημιουργική Ομάδα

With “Mikis Theodorakis” Orchestra


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Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center

Songs of Struggle

Mikis Theodorakis
As part of the tribute to the 2021 bicentennial of the Greek Revolution

Available Dates

  • 12, 13 Jun 2021

Mikis Theodorakis Cycle

Greek National Opera Stavros Niarchos Hall
Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center

Starts at: 19.30  (Sunday 18.30) |  clock



This production, part of a tribute to the 2021 bicentennial of the Greek Revolution, is made possible by a grant from the Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF) [].


With the kind support of



Mikis Theodorakis achieved, through his activism, struggles and, of course, his music, a feat rare for an artist: he emerged as a living nationwide symbol of resistance against the military dictatorship in Greece. The song cycles he wrote during the Greek junta years, such as Songs of Struggle, Songs for Andreas, Romancero Gitano, Mythistorema, 18 Little Songs for the Bitter Homeland, In the East and, of course, the multiple cycles entitled Arcadia, were funnelled clandestinely to coworkers abroad and then recorded. During the same period, Theodorakis lived in Greece as a prisoner under the Regime of the Colonels, having successively been arrested, jailed, led to solitary confinement, hospitalised after a hunger strike and, finally, exiled to the village of Zatouna, Arcadia, and interned to the Oropos concentration camp.

In April 1970, after his release due to pressure by the international outcry, Theodorakis fled to Paris and initiated a worldwide series of concerts calling for the fall of the dictatorship and the restoration of democracy in Greece. In the repertoire of those concerts, and alongside the new songs, the composer included many older ones, derived from previous works of his that glorified the sublime values of humanism and solidarity, such as Mauthausen, Romiossini, Magical City, The Angels’ Quarter, The Hostage and, of course, Axion Esti. Those concerts stirred an enormous worldwide people’s liberation movement, gradually leading to mass demonstrations for peace, equality and liberty. Mikis Theodorakis’ music offered many moments of uplift to Greek society, which drew hope, strength and militancy for its struggle against the dictatorship by uniting its collective voice with those of the great poets set to music by the composer, such as Yannis Ritsos, Odysseus Elytis, Manos Eleftheriou, Brendan Behan, Federico García Lorca, etc.

As part of its tribute to the bicentennial of the Greek War of Independence, the Greek National Opera presents the landmark songs which defined the struggles of that momentous period of Greek history, concurrently fueling the global liberation movement. Mikis Theodorakis’ “Songs of Struggle”, ranking among the symbolic peaks of his multi-faceted oeuvre, are sung by great interpreters dedicated to the cause of Greek popular music, with the invaluable participation of the “Mikis Theodorakis” Orchestra.