Dimitri Chorafas

He was born in Svoronata, Cephalonia on 23/10/1918. He belonged to a family of musicians. He studied the violin at the Athens Conservatory and graduated with a gold medal and a scholarship by Andreas and Iphigenia Syngros (1936). He simultaneously studied at the Athens Law School. In 1940 he was hired by the GNO Orchestra. During 1941-1946 he taught the violin at the Athens Conservatory. As a soloist violin player he worked with the Symphony Orchestra of the Athens Conservatory, the Athens State Orchestra, and the Symphony Orchestra of the National Radio Foundation. After the War he continued his studies at the Paris Conservatory (Conservatoire de Paris) on a French scholarship. He conducted concerts of symphonic music and operas in Greece, Western Europe and Japan. He was permanent chief conductor at the National Rhine Opera (Strasbourg) , professor at the International Academy of Nice and member of appraisal committees in International Competitions for young conductors (Festival de musique de Besançon, Conservatoire de Paris). He has received various distinctions such as: the Grand prix du disque de l'Académie Charles-Cros (1982), the first prize in conducting by the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Paris, the Golden medal by the Athens Conservatory, the Gold Meday of the City of Athens, and the Commander of the Order of the Phoenix (1991). He was director of the GNO after the regime change period (metapolitefsi) (1974-1980). During the thirty-year period between 1965-1995 he conducted at the GNO 28 operas and 43 productions or revivals of productions: Tosca, Le Nozze di Figaro, Don Giovanni, Die Zauberflöte, Otello, Salome, etc. At the GNO he conducted the first-time performances of the works: Les pêcheurs de perles, La damnation de Faust, L’ Italiana in Algeri, La coronazione di Poppea, I Vespri siciliani, L'enfant et les sortilèges, Giulio Cesare in Egitto, Don Quixote. // Last update of the biography: November 2015 – The list of the productions below is continually updated.