MIKIS THEODORAKIS (b 1925 )
Born in Chios, the Greek composer Mikis Theodorakis studied in Athens and, after the Civil War, in Paris with Messiaen and Eugène Bigot. His left-wing political affiliations brought continuing problems after the military coup of 1967, his release from detention secured by international pressure. Honours have included the Lenin Prize, the Onassis Culture Prize and the French distinction of Commandeur de la Légion d’honneur.
Theodorakis wrote operas, ballets and incidental music (all often on Greek subjects), popular music and film scores (most famously Zorba the Greek in 1964). He also composed a wide range of instrumental music, including seven symphonies, chamber music and piano pieces.