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Actress Anna Panagiotopoulou Laid to Rest in Athens

ATHENS – In an atmosphere of deep emotion the final farewell was held for the great actress Anna Panagiotopoulou on May 9 at the Zografou Cemetery in Athens in the presence of relatives, friends, colleagues, but also many fans who loved her for her unforgettable performances on stage and screen.

The beloved actress and screenwriter passed away on Holy Saturday, May 4, after many years of battling Alzheimer’s disease. She was 76.

In her long, fruitful career, Panagiotopoulou won the respect, appreciation and love of her colleagues and the public. She was best known for her memorable roles in the TV series ‘Madame Sousou’ and ‘The Three Graces’. Her death is a significant loss for the Greek theater and Greek television, which she served with dedication throughout her life.

Actress Anna Panagiotopoulou as Madame Sousou. Photo: Facebook

Among the first to arrive at Zografou Cemetery were Mirka Papakonstantinou, Katia Dandoulaki, and Stamatis Fasoulis. “No one can describe the loneliness we are feeling,” Dandoulaki told reporters.

“I love her very much, today we say goodbye to a great lady of the Greek stage. Anna was a theater person. She lived, breathed, and loved the theater,” said director Petros Zoulias.

“I wish it was a film shoot, but it’s not. I can’t process it. She was the ‘dynamo’ for my career and that of Thanasis (Papathanasiou),” said Michalis Reppas. While actor and friend Alexandros Antonopoulos said that “a very large chapter of Greek theater, television, and cinema is gone. It is a great loss not only for us but also for all Greeks.”

Among those present were Giorgos Kimoulis, Dionysis Tsaknis, Thanasis Papathanasiou, Elisavet Konstantinidou, Antonis Louvaros, Christos Hatzipanagiotis, Pantelis Kanarakis, Joyce Evidi, Gerasimos Skiadaresis, Bessy Malfa, Pavlos Orkopoulos, Eleni Kastani, Dafni Lambrogianni, Konstantina Christoforidou, and Rigas Axelos.

Actress Anna Panagiotopoulou was laid to rest on May 9 at the Zografou Cemetery in Athens. Photo: Tatiana Bolari/ EUROKINISSI

Wreaths were sent by, among others, Minister of Culture Lina Mendoni, the artistic director and the Board of the National Theatre, the Board of Dionysos – Organization for the Collective Management of the Rights of Greek Actors, Katia Dandoulaki, Katiana Balanika, the mayor of Zografou, MEGA, Takis Zacharatos, and the families of Markos and Thymios Tagaris.

Stamatis Kraounakis had announced in a social media post the sad news of Panagiotopoulou’s death, writing on Facebook “Anna is gone.”

Anna Panagiotopoulou was born in Kypseli. Since childhood, she wanted to be an actress. Together with Stamatis Fasoulis, they were key members of the Free Theater -almost from its beginnings- and starred in its first great success, ‘Kai si htenizese’. They staged performances of a diverse repertoire, from Brecht to Chourmouzis. They acquired a permanent home when they went to Alsos Pagratiou.

In 1980, the Free Theater stopped and the Free Stage was founded by Panagiotopoulou and Fasoulis, which was essentially a renaming of the Free Theater. Panagiotopoulou continued acting and also writing scripts.

She became widely known through her roles in television series, first on state television and then on private television. ‘Madame Sousou’ is considered the highlight of her television career as she performed the title role in the adaptation of the novel of the same name by Dimitris Psathas in the 1986-87 season. Her costars included Thanasis Papageorgiou, Angelos Antonopoulos, and Natasa Asiki, among others.

She also had great success in two other series- ‘The Three Graces’ with Mina Adamaki, Nena Menti, and Anna Kyriakou, and ‘Dolce Vita’ with Katiana Balanika, Maria Kavoyianni, Maria Foka, Thanasis Efthymiadis, Katerina Ziogou, Pavlos Orkopoulos, and Galini Tseva, etc.

Panagiotopoulou also appeared on the big screen with roles in films such as ‘Safe Sex’, To Klama Vgike ap’ ton Paradiso’ (‘Crying Came from Heaven’), ‘Oxygono’, and ‘Afstiros Katallilo’ (‘Strictly Appropriate’).

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