Mario Frangoulis Offers Manhattan Benefit Concert
Internationally acclaimed tenor Mario Frangoulis is offering a benefit concert on November 2nd, at the Tribeca Performing Arts Center in New York City.
The performance honors Cosmos FM for its continued ethnic broadcasting for 27 years, and will hold a tribute to Hellenic poet Nikos Gatsos. The press release below has more information on Frangoulis' upcoming American performance.
(New York) – World renown tenor, Mario Frangoulis, returns to the US stage with a unique and inspirational tribute to one of Greece's most revered poets, Nikos Gatsos. The benefit concert will celebrate 27 years of ethnic broadcasting in the tri state area by Cosmos FM...the only daily, bilingual radio station in the region's vibrant Greek community.
"I am so excited to be back in America for this very special occasion," Frangoulis says. "I truly believe in the mission of public broadcasting in reaching people through the airwaves to educate and inspire them. I'm very proud to be Greek and so proud of the important work Cosmos has done for almost 3 decades to promote our beautiful and rich Hellenic culture."
The concert titled, "Love is Life", will take place at the Tribeca Performing Arts Center in Manhattan on November 2nd at 5 PM. The performance will showcase Frangoulis' beautiful interpretations of several Greek songs, based on Gatsos' poetry. The program will include well-known music by Greece's most influential composers...Manos Hadjidakis, Mikis Theodorakis and Stavros Xarhakos.
Frangoulis, who is passionate about bringing the Greek spirit and ethos to stages across the globe, will be presented with the "Phidippides" Award at a Gala dinner hosted by Cosmos FM (the flagship station of the Greek American Public Information System or GAEPIS) on November 1st at Terrace on the Park in Flushing Meadows at 7 PM.
"We couldn't be more thrilled with our honoree this year," says Stavros Soussou, GAEPIS Chairman. "Mario Frangoulis serves as a wonderful ambassador for Greece around the world with his exceptional talent, strong work ethic, pride in being Greek, as well as his humanitarian sprit. We thank him wholeheartedly for lending his voice to raise much needed funds for our mission."
Frangoulis chose the poetry of Gatsos because he says he feels strongly about elevating the knowledge of the extraordinary achievements of modern Greek poets. Gatsos' major work, "Amorgos" (1943) was written during the Nazi occupation of Greece and was lauded by the Nobel laureates Odysseas Elytis and George Seferis, and it also greatly influenced the postwar generation of Greek poets. After the war, Gatsos worked mainly as a literary critic and translator for Greek theaters. He also wrote lyrics for the music of Greece's most respected composers, which led to a brilliant career in modern Greek songwriting.
ABOUT MARIO FRANGOULIS
Frangoulis, who speaks five languages, was born in Africa but raised in Greece, after violence in the former Rhodesia separated him from his parents. He later graduated from London's prestigious Guildhall School of Music and Drama. He was discovered by the legendary producer Cameron Mackintosh and was cast as Marius in the theater production of Les Miserables. Frangoulis also won the role of Tony (out of 4,000 people who auditioned) in the only production of West Side Story ever presented at the famous La Scala in Milan. Frangoulis went on to record 15 solo albums and a myriad of compilation albums. In 2007, he joined forces with other superstars like Bruce Springsteen, Jon Bon Jovi, Natalie Merchant and Madeleine Peyroux in support of a compilation album called "Give Us Your Poor," to raise money for a national campaign to end homelessness in the USA. Because of his own challenges as a child, Frangoulis devotes much of his time and talents to organizations that assist children...as the Global Ambassador of The Horatio Alger Association of Distinguished Americans, which provides privately funded scholarships to the highest risk, highest potential children in the US and Canada (average family income of $15,000), UNESCO in Greece, and the World Centers of Compassion for Children International for refugee children in Europe, founded by Nobel Peace Laureate Betty Williams.
About the Phidippides Award
The Phidippides Award, for passionate advocacy of Hellenism, is a creation of the world renowned jeweler Ilias Lalaounis, bestowed annually to an individual or organization that has demonstrated a profound record of promoting and preserving Hellenism on a global scale. Since 1994, past award recipients have included some of Greece's most significant cultural figures such as the late Jules Dassin and The Melina Mercouri Foundation, Mikis Theodorakis, Gianna Angelopoulos-Daskalaki, the late Michael Cacoyannis. Also, distinguished Hellenes and philhellenes have included Andrew A. Athens, Demetrios and Georgia Kaloidis, John and Margo Catsimatidis, Dennis Mehiel, The Alexander S. Onassis Public Benefit Foundation, Prof. Edmund Keeley, Sen. Paul Sarbanes, Kyriakos Tsakopoulos, Dr. John Brademas, Socrates P. Kokkalis, the late Constantine Papadakis (posthumously), John McK Camp II, and most recently, Theodore G. Spyropoulos. The award was inspired by the Athenian herald, Phidippides, who ran 200 km (124 miles) in less than two days to reach Sparta and request the aid of the Spartans in defending Athens from the Persians. He then ran the 40 km (near 25 miles) from the battlefield near Marathon to Athens to announce the Greek victory over Persia in the Battle of Marathon (490 BC) with the word «νενικήκαμεν» ("We have won"), then collapsed and died shortly thereafter from exhaustion. Phidippides' dedication and stamina in delivering the news is an inspiration to Hellenic Public Radio-COSMOS FM.
About GAEPIS and HPR-COSMOS FM
Founded in 1987, Greek American Educational Public Information Systems, Inc. (GAEPIS) is a not-for-profit 501(c) 3 duly registered corporation dedicated to the preservation and promotion of Hellenism in the U.S. and worldwide. Its flagship daily bilingual public radio service, Hellenic Public Radio-Cosmos FM (HPR), reaches over 200,000 households weekly on WNYE 91.5 FM in NY, NJ, and CT and online. It is internationally recognized for providing key news coverage and analysis and providing cultural profiles and reliable educational features to both Greek and non-Greek listeners.