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The Mikis Theodorakis Archive

Music archive | Texts archive | Press clippings | Audio and Video recordings | Printed books and scores | Concert programs and posters

The Mikis Theodorakis Archive was donated to the Music Library Lilian Voudouri in December 1997. The different sections of the Archive were housed both in the composer's residences in Athens and Vrahati (Corinthe). The Vrahati collection - containing newspaper and magazine clippings, providing records of the composer's long musical and political careers - was the first segment of the Archive to be transported to the Music Library. The bulk of the material (including musical and literary writings), housed in the composer's Athens residence, made up the second segment. During the entire period of the move (six months) a daily log was being kept describing the type and quantity of the material being moved every day.

Due to the great diversity of manuscripts, documents, and other materials in the Theodorakis Archive, this has been divided into the following interdependent categories, as adopted by the composer himself:

Music archive

This part contains all the musical manuscripts, by the composer beginning as early as 1937, when the composer was 12 years old and living in Patras. It is worth noting that the collection of manuscripts is made up of works spanning the entire life of the composer, including works composed in exile or in prison.

When brought to the library, the manuscripts, 50.000 folios in all, were assembled in 66 large folders according to the approximate date of composition or the genre of the work. The process of recording and organizing the material has already been started by the Library. Soon researchers will be able to study the manuscripts, sketches as well as the final scores of each separate work. Thus, they will be able to follow the evolution of a composition, because the sketches and other manuscripts provide a wealth of information on various aspects of the compositional process. Following its systematic arrangement, the collection is duplicated in the form of microfilms. The first group of works, including symphonies and large scale lyrical compositions, has already been microfilmed.

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Texts archive

The collection of texts comprises about 56.000 folios, assembled by the composer in 92 large folders. This section of the archive consists of the composer’s writings about his musical and political activities, as well as his correspondence. The handling of this material will be the same as that of musical one.

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Press clippings

Press clippings from the year 1950 to the present constitute the third part of the Archive, which is organized in 273 volumes. The material is chronologically arranged and includes articles from Greek and foreign newspapers and magazines regarding the life and work of Mikis Theodorakis.

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Audio and Video recordings

The substantial collection of 220 audio and about 300 video tapes audio tapes is valuable to the researcher especially because of the recordings of early interviews and live concerts they contain.

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Printed books and scores

The composer also donated printed editions of his works which are hard to find, as well as books and doctoral dissertations on his life and work.

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Concert programs and posters

From a variety of events belong to this last part of the archive (250 and 91 respectively). Such material too provides valuable information to the researcher.

Stephanie Merakos

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