The Stavros Niarchos Foundation has announced a €20 million ($22.7 million) grant to the Greek National Opera in support of the company's efforts to enhance its artistic outreach and promote its work internationally.
The grant will support the implementation of a four-year program and development plan that includes targeted collaborations and co-productions with theaters, ballet companies, dance groups, and other arts organizations around the world; guest productions and residencies by cutting-edge conductors, directors, soloists, choreographers, stage designers, costume designers, and dancers; international tours featuring newly commissioned work; and a promotional campaign. The funding also will support the opera's planned year-round celebration of the two-hundredth anniversary of the Greek Revolution of 1821, including new opera and ballet productions, commissions of new plays, and co-productions with important ensembles and distinguished Greek and foreign artists.
Since 2017, the opera has been housed at the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center, the design and construction of which was fully funded by SNF before its control and operation were handed over to the Greek government.
"The [grant] will give great impetus to our international presence," said GNO artistic director Giorgos Koumendakis. "It will substantially support our artistic vision and essentially help us to work systematically toward a truly new artistic identity, the first examples of which we have already exhibited in the two years we have been here at the SNFCC. The announcement of this new grant by the Stavros Niarchos Foundation, beyond the great joy that it brings us, emphasizes our own commitment to developing an integrated four-year plan."
"From supporting the GNO's outreach to society at large, even before the construction of the SNFCC, the establishment of its new facilities, the development of the new Alternative Stage, and the approach of vulnerable groups through its educational activities, we have stood side by side with the GNO to support its goal to progress," said SNF co-president Andreas Dracopoulos. "For us, as Greek citizens, the GNO stands as a national treasure. We deeply appreciate the vision, the 'philotimo', and the dedication that the people of the GNO exhibit under the guidance of Giorgos Koumentakis. Within the framework of the excellent and harmonious cooperation that we have had over the years, we continue to support the GNO in its place in the sphere of opera theaters through synergies with international operas, artists, and composers."
(Photo credit: GNO/Andreas Simopoulos)