to music, the term “artistic popular song” was born, followed by the culturalrevolution. Theodorakis wrote in his autobiography: “there was, at the time,
[...]. A mass escape from everyday routine towards an area of dreamlike reality”
,which combined with a specific social and political action aimed at “liberating the individual withinthe context of society. With these two elements –
personal liberation and social liberation
– I believed that we would move more rapidly and more fundamentally towards achievingreconciliation between the members of society and therefore achieve
Theodorakis as a bearer of social wealth
There is, however, another dimension to Theodorakis’ social contribution. “Theodorakis'music contributed to the financial growth of Greece by creating employment positions, by helping anumber of professions to grow, by attracting tourists and exporting Greek culture. The worldwideappeal of his music helped Greece to gain millions of friends all over the world and opened upinternational markets to everything Greek, from Greek literature to Greek wine. The country'smusic industry especially benefited from the processes initiated by Theodorakis. Landmarks inGreek music, such as the recording of
in 1964, signified the need for larger studios withmore advanced technology, while the sale of millions of records led to the building of larger factories in order to produce them. Whole business sectors […] during the 1960s saw an increase inemployment and higher salaries. Dozens of new singers and musicians became famous by workingwith Mikis, and started successful careers. Also, there are dozens of Theodorakis' musicaldescendants who established themselves and forged their careers as composers, accompanied bygenerations of lyricists, singers and musicians.”
The Cyprus issue has always been a thorn in the heart of every Greek and Cypriot, wherever they may live. The same applies to Theodorakis. In 1963 he met Archbishop Makarios ( Presidentof the Republic of Cyprus 1960-1977) for the first time. He took part in, often leading, all thedemonstrations for the independence of Cyprus. In 1964 he was at the head of the peace march inCyprus. During the same year he made five more trips. He visited the bombed areas. He collectedshrapnel from the bombs and on his return to Greece proved, during a speech before Parliament,that Cyprus had been bombed by napalm bombs! However, his contribution to the Cypriot nationdid not end there. Since 1975 when he organised a concert in Paris on behalf of the refugees(following the invasion by the Turkish forces and the island's bisection) until today he has been atthe side of the Cypriot people. He became their voice. He organised dozens of concerts, appeals tothe international community, interviews and meetings with the country's political leadership to helprealise the people's dream for a united Cyprus.
On April 21 1967, tanks took over the centre of Athens. Democracy was abolished and anentire nation was condemned to 7 years of dictatorship darkness. Foremost amongst the Greeks,Theodorakis raised his voice to defend Democracy. As a Member of Parliament
he appealed toglobal opinion to condemn the military coup. A new round of persecution, imprisonment and exilefollowed. Once again his life was in danger. His life was spared due to the international uproar against the imprisonment and torture suffered by himself and his family.
The World's Mikis Theodorakis
As soon as he arrived in Paris as a free man (April 1970), he was at the forefront of thestruggle against the dictatorship. In Paris, 500.000 people took part in the anti-dictatorship concert3