George Couroupos

He was born in Athens in 1942. He studied music at the Athens Conservatory (diploma in piano) and composition at the Paris Conservatory with Olivier Messiaen (1968-72). During his stay in Paris he composed a number of works including “Greek Song”, 26 “Αffrontement”, “Hermes and Prometheus” and, for the Festival of Avignon, some stage works such as “Dieu le veut”, in collaboration with J.M. Ribes and Giannis Kokkos, and “Griselidis”, directed by Antoine Vitez. His most important works after his return to Greece are: “Sonata for Cello and Piano”, “The Little Mariner” (on poetry by Odysseus Elytis), the opera “Pylades”, in collaboration with George Chimonas and Dionisis Fotopoulos, the symphonic ballet “Odyssey”,which was choreographed by John Neumeier, “Odyssey”(for which he was awarded the international prize «Benois de la danse» in 1996), “The Chessboard Runaways” (on a libretto by Eugene Trivizas), the “Concertino for piano and orchestra”, the lyric tragedy “Iocasta” (on poetry by Ioulita Iliopoulou), “The Monogram” (stage cantata on poetry by Odysseus Elytis), “The Sceneof Miracles” (opera on a text by Miguel de Cervantes), “Lamento”– concerto grosso– for orchestra and baroque instruments and “OakVoice” (a ritual drama). “Leporella”opera on a libretto by Ioulita Iliopoulou (based on Stefan Zweig’s work of the same title), “Hope of Homeland”, (2021) opera for the bicentenary of the Greek revolution, in a libretto by Ioulita Iliopoulou. He has also composed many song cycles for voice and piano. He was awarded the Nikos Kazantzakis Prize (1984) and the Greek Academy Prize for his contribution to music. In 2015 he was named Chevalier de la Legion d’ Honneur by the French Republic. He has served as President of the Greek National Opera House, Artistic Director of the Orchestra of Colours and Artistic director of The Athens Concert Hall. He is professor at the Ionian University in Corfu. George Couroupos’ work “The Monogram” based on Odysseus Elytis’ poetry has been released on CD (MINOS EMI- UNIVERSAL) as well as “The world the Small the great of Odysseus Elytis with the music by George Couroupos” (ed. Ikaros).