An annual music festival with performances of the late composer Mikis Theodorakis’ works will be held in the mountain village of Zatouna, western Peloponnese, and Athens on September 2-4, honoring his wishes for an annual festival at the place of his exile during the military dictatorship in Greece.
The First International Festival “Mikis Theodorakis-Arkadies Zatouna” is a collaboration of the International Mikis Theodorakis Center (“Mouseion”) in Zatouna, the municipality of Gortynia to which the village belongs administratively, and the “Friends of Music” association housed at the Athens Concert Hall (Megaro Moussikis).
It will open in Athens on September 2 with a walk from Mikis’ last residence at Filopappou Hill, go around the Acropolis, and end up at the Herod Atticus Odeon as the Mikis Theodorakis Orchestra concludes its rehearsal for a performance at Zatouna. A children’s choir performance, a two-day symposium, an exhibition with archival materila, and an annual memorial service for Theodorakis – who died aged 96 in September 2021 – will all take place at the mountain village.Further details will become available at a later date.
Theodorakis was arrested by the Greek junta the year it came to power, 1967, and was exiled with his family to Zatouna, in Arcadia. At the village, he continued composing works and smuggling them abroad to be sung by Maria Farantouri and Melina Mercouri. He was released after his health took a down turn in 1970, and following intense international pressure, and left for Paris in April of the same year.
The village of Zatouna (accent on the first “a”) honored him by setting up the Mouseion, housed at the old stone-built grade school at the central square.