National Opera to receive 20-million-euro grant from SNF for programme abroad

Greece’s National Opera on Thursday announced that it will be the recipient of another major grant from the Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF), amounting to 20 million euros, which will be used to help fund its programme beyond the country’s borders over the next four years.

The grant was announced by SNF Co-president Andreas Dracopoulos and the National Opera’s creative director Giorgos Koumentakis, during a press conference at the SNF Cultural Centre. The money will be used to finance artistic collaborations, joint productions, transfers and international tours, as well as the opera’s activities for the celebration in 2021 of the 200th anniversary since the Greek War of Independence and an international promotional campaign.

Dracopoulos said the SNF supports the Greek opera’s efforts to “join the global sphere of operatic theatres by cultivating collaborations with operas, artists and composers abroad.” Koumentakis said the grant will help support the National Opera’s vision and would on no account replace the role of the culture ministry, which was responsible for its good functioning and survival.

Regarding the opera’s tribute for the 200th anniversary of 1821, Koumentakis said he had already started contacting people for new opera and ballet productions and assigning new works to distinguished ensembles and Greek and foreign artists.

“The central aim of the tribute is for the Greek Revolution to be seen not as a local historic event but one with a global scope, indicating its connection with the great revolutions that led to the creation of the great, independent nation-states of the modern world, such as the French and American revolutions,” he added.