Two works of important modern Greek composers, Minas I. Alexiadis’ Doric Concerto for string orchestra and Joseph Papadatos’ composition Phoenix for string orchestra, are performed by musicians of the Greek National Opera Orchestra under the baton of Miltos Logiadis, at the venues of the Athens International Airport “Eleftherios Venizelos”.
The 2nd Online festival titled "Counterpoints", curated by Giorgos Koumendakis, shed light upon the relationship between Greek art music and architecture. The festival’s videos were presented from 27 September to 31 October 2020. The festival was made possible by a grant from the Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF) [www.SNF.org] to enhance the Greek National Opera’s artistic outreach.
At a glance – Synopsis
Minas I. Alexiadis’ Doric Concerto was written for the Armonia Atenea and first premiered in 1997 at the Athens Concert Hall, under the baton of Theodore Antoniou. The composer notes about the work: “In its initial phase the compositional process, was a study in diatonic modality, structured in detail (canons, imitations, augmentations – diminutions, heterophonic ramifications, and other techniques of polyphony). Later on, a Dorian mode: solely and throughout, where I simply took care to bring the melodies to ‘singing’. The strongly contrapunctual first movement (Μοderato fluente), leads to the pandiatonic slow second movement (Adagio religioso). In the third movement (Vivo), the principal melodic theme of the work prevails, organised through all these compositional techniques and functioning also as a Greek dance (ballos) in 3+3+2=8/8 time signature”.
The composition Phoenix (Sketches for an allegory) for string orchestra, Joseph Papadatos’ opus 110, was written in 2018. It was commissioned by conductor Nikos Tsouchlos for the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Summer Nostos Festival. According to Herodotus, the crimson mythological bird Phoenix is reborn from his ashes. Phoenix is a sacred and omnipotent symbol and can be found in many ancient civilisations across the globe. It is associated with the Sun and the element of fire. It symbolises the eternal rebirth through purification (flames). Both the title and the subtitle are suggestive of the work’s extra-musical origin, without however being limited to a descriptive disposition. The work consists of three parts, each separated by a pause.
The Athens International Airport “Eleftherios Venizelos” started operating on 28 March 2001, replacing the International Airport of Elliniko that served Athens for sixty years. It was named after the Greek politician Eleftherios Venizelos, who as a prime minister founded the Ministry of Aviation and made systematic efforts to organize civil aviation.
Creative team – Cast
Conductor Miltos Logiadis
With musicians of the GNO Orchestra