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An important Greek composer, Dimitris Dragatakis (1914-2001), will be honoured on Friday 11 March at the Music Library of the Friends of Music Association at the Athens Concert Hall, where his archive is also kept. The book by Thomas Tamvakos Dimitris Dragatakis, Official Discography and Archival Recordings (published by the Alexandroupolis Music Society, 2021) is commented on by distinguished scientists and artists who shed light on the composer’s unique musical personality, each in his own light. The evening is accompanied by a short musical programme with songs for voice and piano and piano works by the composer, including many of them in their first world premiere.

Dimitris Dragatakis was a prolific composer. He wrote music for most musical genres, with a total number of works exceeding 140. His first compositions date from before 1940 and his last from 2001, the year of his death. His first dated work, String Quartet No. 1, in 1957, already bore the stamp of maturity. The fact that he began composing at a relatively old age (40-42), having already settled into an attitude to life, also helped him to maintain his Greek entity intact within the avant-garde currents of the time. Since 1958, Dragatakis has been active as a composer and has been writing systematically, many of which have been distinguished in Panhellenic Competitions, and has been following in every possible way (radio, concerts, lectures) the compositional trends of his time, gradually approaching contemporary musical trends.

Despite his initial apprenticeship with L. Zora and M. Kalomiris, he never identified himself with the style of the National Music School; fragments of this style can only be found in some of his early works. On the contrary, he was mainly a self-taught composer, as the influences of the music of his place of origin, the musical currents of his time (the musical avant-garde of the 1960s and 1970s) and, above all, his personal perception of musical art essentially shaped his creative language.

The importance of Dragatakis’ work is, however, independent of the sheer number of his works or the number of distinctions he received during his lifetime. The acceptance and recognition that Dragatakis’s music has gained is mainly linked to the specific characteristics of its creator. Dragatakis was a contemporary composer, who listened to the messages of his time and expressed them through his music; he was also a deeply Greek composer, who firmly integrated the Greek musical tradition, especially the music of the continent, into his work. Finally, he was a creative humanist, who wanted art to reach the average person and not just the “experts”.

Speakers of the event:

Stefania Merakou, musicologist, director of the Lillian Voudouri Music Library
Dr. Athanasios Trikoupis, Associate Professor of the University of Ioannina, Department of Music Studies.
Dr. Magdalene Kalopana musicologist, organist
George Monemvasitis music critic, author
Iakovos Konitopoulos composer, president of the Board of the Association of Friends of Dragatakis, secretary general of the Board of the Union of Greek Composers
Thomas Tamvakos music writer, critic, researcher, author, honorary member of the Union of Greek Composers
The musical part will be performed by:
Ioanna Vrakatseli mezzo-soprano
Anni Fassea, soprano
Diana Vranousi piano
Christos Marinos piano


Works for piano

Nostalgia, A.K.Ka. 9.2 (1940) *
Butterfly, A.K.Ka. 9.1 (before 1940) **
Diana Vranoussi (piano)

Works for voice and piano

Cheligas, in poetry by Kostas Krystallis, A.K.Ka. 13.1 (c. 1942-1949) ***
Tγούδι, to poetry by M. Veloudis, A.K.Ka. 13.3 (c. 1957-1958) ***
Mana, to poetry by Victoria Theodorou, A.K.A. 13.20 (1982) ***
You were young, in poetry by V. Theodorou, A.K.A. 13.17 (1982) ***
I drink water, in poetry by V. Theodorou, A.K.Ka. 13.18 (1982) ***
Ioanna Vrakatseli (mezzo), Christos Marinos (piano)

Enypnio, to poetry by Dimitris Dragatakis, A.K.Ka 13.21 (2000) ****
Anni Fassea (treble), Christos Marinos (piano)

* first performance (radio): Popi Efstratiadou
** first performance: Maria Kalantzakou (perhaps at the National Conservatory, mid 1940s). Dedicated to the same
*** first world performance
**** commissioned by the Archive of Greek Composers Thomas Tamvakos. First performance.  Dedicated to O. Athanasiadou
Friday 11 March, 19:00

Music Library “Lillian Voudouri” of the Friends of Music Association, at the Athens Concert Hall