ATHENS – The final act of this year’s Summer Nostos Festival at the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center (SNFCC) came to a spectacular close – after greetings and thanks expressed by Co-President of the Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF), Andreas Dracopoulos – with a fireworks show that lit up the Athenian sky.
“Since the completion of the SNFCC, it has been visited by 11 million people – a number equal to the entire population of Greece. That is why warm congratulations are due to you – because as we have said in the past, this Center belongs to you,” Dracopoulos said amidst applause during his closing speech.
“As far as the Summer Nostos Festival is concerned, we celebrate its fifth anniversary – but it is actually the eighth year that we hosted the philanthropy conference. It is very important to note that during the first year, we hosted 40,000 guests and this year we reached 280,000 guests. Congratulations to all who continue to embrace this project,” he continued.
Dracopoulos then notified the crowd that the Summer Nostos Festival 2020 will be held from June 21 to June 28, and he thanked the “angels of Nostos” – Ellie Andreopoulou, Milly Paschali, and Asimina Koutroumpousi – but also all his co-workers at SNF, and the SNFCC employees who “not only the week of the festival, but every day of the year, continue to hold the dream high.”
Special mention was made of the contributions of the “Αναγέννηση και Πρόοδος – Rennaissance and Progress” organization, and more specifically to Takis Koulouvaris and Stavros Boglou, who organized all the athletic and family activities of the Summer Nostos Festival, as well as the SNF Run which took place last Sunday.
It is also worth mentioning that through the participation of the public in the SNF Run: Running Towards the Future, but also through separate contributions, 15,590 euros were raised – which with the additional contribution of SNF was tripled (amounting to a total of 46,770 euros) – to support the work of the Equestrian Healing Center of Serres, which received 12,669 euros, the Panhellenic Athletic Club for the Disabled, 12,510 euros received, and the Association of People with Movement Problems and the Friends of Rodopi Province, which received 21,591 euros.
The production company of the Summer Nostos Festival, ViewMaster Films was congratulated, and Dracopoulos noted that although “all that you see may seem easy, but they all require a lot of work and good taste.”
At the end of his speech, Dracopoulos also warmly thanked the 700 artists and 200 volunteers who contributed to the week-long event.
“We have a date next year, June 21 to June 28, 2020! Continue to visit this space throughout the year. It’s all yours,” concluded Dracopoulos.
After Dracopoulos’ speech, an impressive fireworks show followed, during which friends of the band Schoolwave jumped onto the Summer Nostos Festival stage.
Among the eminent artists of the evening were Apollo Retsos, Danae Nielsen, and Astrarot, and shortly before the closing ceremony, on the Canal Stage, a face familiar to the Greek-American Community presented the Festival’s final concert.
Periklis Kanaris, the distinguished Greek musician (who now lives in New York), brought some legendary musicians with him to perform at the Festival.
As his name implies, he is a descendant (fifth generation) of the famous fighter of the War of 1821 and later of the prime minister of Greece, Konstantinos Kanaris. Born in Athens, he began studying piano from an early age and earned a scholarship to attend Berklee College of Music, where he studied vocals and composition and focused on creating music for movies. He also has a Master’s degree in Communications from Boston University and a Bachelor’s degree in media studies from the University of Kent in England.