Thanos Mikroutsikos

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Thanos Mikroutsikos
Thanos Mikroutsikos.jpg
Mikroutsikos in 2007
Background information
Birth name Athanasios Mikroutsikos
Born (1947-04-13) 13 April 1947 (age 68)
Patras, Greece
Genres Éntekhno
Occupation(s) Composer, Musician, Politician
Instruments Piano
Years active 1975 - present
Labels Lyra Records, Minos EMI, CBS Records International, Polydor Records
Website http://www.mikroutsikos.gr

Athanasios (Thanos) Mikroutsikos (Greek: Θάνος Μικρούτσικος) (born 13 April 1947) is a Greek composer and former politician. He is considered one of the most important composers of the recent Greek musical scene.

Biography[edit]

Early and Personal Life[edit]

He was born on the 13 April 1947 in Patra. He is the older brother of Andreas Mikroutsikos, who is also a musician/composer and a television show host. His wife is children's author Maria Papagianni, whom he married in 1996.

Music[edit]

He studied piano in the Philharmonic Society of Patras and in the Hellenic Conservatory. In addition, he studied Mathematics in the University of Athens. He began composing at the end of the 1960s but only officially debuted in 1975, with the release of his album Politika Tragoudia ('Political Songs'). He continued on this compositional path, setting to music the poems of Ritsos, Mayakovsky, Manos Eleftheriou and Brecht, amongst others.

His albums Kantata gia ti Makroniso ('Cantata for Makronisos'), Fouente Ovehouna ('Fuenteovejuna'), Troparia gia Foniades ('Hymns for Murderers') and Mousiki Praxi Ston Brecht ('Musical Practice on Brecht') are characteristic of the climate of Metapolitefsi or Regime Change that was taking place in the period 1975-78. In particular, the 'Cantata for Makronisos', a pioneering piece in which Mikroutsikos experimented with atonality was extremely well received in international music festivals and an interpretation of particular note was recorded by Maria Dimitriadi.

His next album, Stavros Tou Notou ('Southern Cross'), set to the poetry of Nikos Kavvadias, opened up further musical avenues for him, combining theatre, electronic music and atonality. With the same devotion to poetry, he continued to set the works of Ritsos, Alkis Alkaios, François Villon and Cavafy, amongst others. In addition, he has written an opera, Eleni ('Helen') and set to music several children's fairytales.

He has worked with many renowned singers such as Maria Dimitriadi, Haris Alexiou, Manolis Mitsias, Dimitris Mitropanos, Vasilis Papakonstantinou, Christos Thibaios and Giannis Koutras, amongst others. His music has been particularly well received and recognised in Western Europe. During his compositional career, he has managed to liberate the form of Greek song, adding together elements from the modernist and classical western tradition. He also experimented with the combination of tonal and atonal sounds and with morphological variation.

He was artistic director of the New Music Society and the Musical Analogion, whilst he also worked with and directed the Patras International Festival.

Politics[edit]

He has been involved in Greece's political life since the 1960s. During the turbulent years of the military junta (1967–1974), he was persecuted by the regime for his anti-dictatorial activities and ideas. When the junta collapsed, he continued being actively involved in politics as a member of the maoist EKKE, especially in the first years after the restoration of democracy.

After the elections of October 1993, he was appointed as Deputy Minister of Culture by the new Panhellenic Socialist Movement (PASOK) government, serving alongside the late Melina Mercouri who was Minister of Culture. He was appointed to Mercouri's position when she died in 1994, a position he kept until 1996.

Discography[edit]

Albums
Year Greek Title Transliteration Translation Label
1972 Είμαστε κάτι ξεχαρβαλωμένες κιθάρες / Οι Δων Κιχώτες Eimaste kati xecharvalomenes kithares / Oi Don Kichotes We are rickety guitars / The Don Quixotes Minos
1975 Πολιτικά τραγούδια Politika tragoudia Political songs Lyra
1976 Καντάτα για την Μακρόνησο Kantata gia tin Makroniso Cantata for Makronisos Lyra
Σπουδή σε ποιήματα του Βλαδίμηρου Μαγιακόβσκη Spoudi se poiimata tou Vladimirou Magiakovski Study on the poems of Vladimir Mayakovsky Lyra
1977 Φουέντε Οβεχούνα Fouente Ovechouna Fuenteovejuna Lyra
Τροπάρια για φονιάδες Troparia gia foniades Hymns for murderers Lyra
1978 Τραγούδια της λευτεριάς Tragoudia tis lefterias Songs of freedom Lyra
Μουσική πράξη στον Μπέρτολτ Μπρέχτ Mousiki praxi ston Bertolt Brecht Musical practice on Bertolt Brecht Lyra
1979 Ο σταυρός του νότου O stavros tou notou The Southern Cross Lyra
1980 Ευριπίδης IV Evripidis IV Euripides IV Lyra
1981 Λεοντής-Μικρούτσικος: Συναυλίες 81 Leondis-Mikroutsikos: Σynavlies 81 Leondis-Mikroutsikos: Concerts 81 CBS
1982 Εμπάργκο Empargko Embargo CBS
1983 Ιχνογραφία- Ο γέρος της Αλεξάνδρειας Ichnografia - O geros tis Alexandreias Sketch - The old man from Alexandria CBS
Αραπιά για λίγο πάψε να χτυπάς με το σπαθί Arapia gia ligo papse na chtypas me to spathi Arab lands stop hitting with your sword for a while CBS
1984 Βίκτωρ-Βικτωρία Victor-Victoria Victor/Victoria CBS
1985 Αντιθέσεις Anditheseis Contrasts ΕΤ.ΝΕ.Μ.
Ντούο για άλτο σαξόφωνο και ηλεκτρικό μπάσο Douo gia alto saxofono kai ilektriko baso Duet for alto saxophone and electric bass ΕΤ.ΝΕ.Μ.
1986 Η αγάπη είναι ζάλη I agapi einai zali Love is dizzy Μinos
1987 Στον Μάνο Λοϊζο-Νύχτα με σκιές χρωματιστές Ston Mano Loizo-Nychta me skies chromatistes (Dedication) To Manos Loizos-Night with coloured shadows Μinos
1988 Όλα από χέρι καμένα Ola apo cheri kamena All from a burnt hand Μinos
1989 Ελλάς κατόπιν αορτής Ellas katopin aortis Greece after an aneurysm CBS
Όσο κρατάει ένας καφές Oso krataei enas kafes As long as a coffee lasts Minos
1990 Για πιάνο και φωνή Gia piano kai foni For piano and voice Minos
Κρατάει χρόνια αυτή η κολώνια Krataei chronia afti i kolonia This cologne lasts for years Minos
1991 Γραμμές των οριζόντων Grammes ton orizondon Lines of the horizon Minos
1992 Συγνώμη για την άμυνα Sygnomi gia tin amyna Sorry for the defence Minos
Music for Two Minos
1994 Volpe d'amore EMI
1996 Τα παραμύθια της γαλάζιας γραμμής Ta paramythia tis galazias grammis The fairytales of the blue line Minos
Στου αιώνα την παράγκα Stou aiona tin paragka In the shanty house of the century Minos
1997 Ποίηση με μουσική Poiisi me mousiki Poetry with music EMI
Η ιστορία της Λούλου I istoria tis Loulou The story of Lulu EMI
Ψάξε στ'όνειρο μας Psaxe st'oneiro mas Search in our dreams Minos
1998 Στην αγκαλιά της άκρης Stin agkalia tis akris In the embrace of the edge EMI
Ο Θάνος Μικρούτσικος τραγουδά Θάνο Μικρούτσικο O Thanos Mikroutsikos tragouda Thano Mikroutsiko Thanos Mikroutsikos sings Thanos Mikroutsiko EMI
For sax and strings and love and dreams Agora
Slow motion EMI
1999 The return of Helen EMI
Θάλασσα στη σκάλα Thalassa sti skala Sea on the stairs Minos
2000 Σφεντόνα Live Sfendona Live Slingshot Live
Ο Θάνος Μικρούτσικος στη Λύρα O Thanos Mikroutsikos sti Lyra Thanos Mikroutsikos at Lyra
Live Στη Σφεντόνα Live Sti Sfendona Live at Slingshot Minos/EMI
2001 Του Απείρου Εραστής Tou Apeirou Erastis Lover of infinity
Dance and Memories EMI Classics
Οι Κυρίες Του Θάνου Μικρούτσικου Oi Kyries Tou Thanou Mikroutsikou Thanos Mikroutsikos's ladies Minos/EMI
Στον Τόπο Μου Είμαι Τέλεια Ξένος Ston Topo Mou Eimai Teleia Xenos I am a perfect stranger in my place Minos/EMI
2002 Αυτά Που Τραγουδήσαμε Afta Pou Tragoudisame Those (songs) which we sang Minos/EMI
Ολα Τα Πρόσωπα Ola Ta Prosopa All the people Minos/EMI
Ο Άμλετ Της Σελήνης O Amlet Tis Selinis Hamlet of the moon Minos/EMI
2004 Σχοινοβάτης Schoinovatis Tightrope walker Minos/EMI
2006 Υπέροχα Μονάχοι Yperocha Monachoi Perfectly alone Legend
2007 Παράξενο δεν είναι; Paraxeno den einai? Isn't it weird?
2009 Επέστρεφε(Καβάφης) Epestrefe(Kavafis) He came back (Cavafy)
Τους Έχω Βαρεθεί / Θάνος Μικρούτσικος Σε Συνεργασία με τα Υπόγεια Ρεύματα Tous Echo Varethei/ Thanos Mikroutsikos Se Synergasia me ta Ypogeia Revmata I am bored of them / Thanos Mikroutsikos in collaboration with undercurrents Legend

External links[edit]

Political offices
Preceded by
Melina Mercouri
Minister for Culture of Greece
1994–1996
Succeeded by
Stavros Benos