Thousands of Greeks gathered at the Athens Cathedral early Thursday afternoon to attend the funeral service for the great late composer Mikis Theodorakis and say for the last time Farewell to a man who charmed and roused the world with his immortal tunes and his songs.
“We don’t forget you, Global Greek.”
The President of the Republic, Katerina Sakellaropoulou, and the Secretary General of the Greek Communist party KKE, Dimitris Koutsoumpas held the speeches at the tribute.
Koutsoumpas speech was particularly emotional and with an ideological background. “All your life you held the rifle in one hand and your scores in the other” he said about the man who was member of the Communist party most of his life and he wanted to go form this world as a communist.
People outside the Church applauded when Koutsoumpas said “Immortal, Mikis!”
“All together, all ages and generations we say farewell to the Greek and Ecumenic, the Patriot and the Internationalist Mikis Theodorakis, a symbol and a role model,” the president said.
The moment she listed the places where Theodorakis was sent in exile, it was as if the history of modern Greece passed by before our eyes.
All political leaders and several ministers attended the funeral ceremony together representatives from foreign embassies as well as artists like his muse Maria Farantouri, his friend for over 40 years Turkish composer Zulfu Livanelli and Swedish singer Aria Sagionma.
However, the crowd booed Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis when he arrived at the Cathedral accompanied by the Athens mayor Costas Bakogiannis.
The crowd chanted* “People don’t forget – Mitsotakis thug”
The crowd booed also Culture Minister Lina Mendoni and leader of nationalist Greek Solution Kyriakos Velopoulos.
Despite the rainfall, the thousands of Greeks remained outside the Cathedral and sang Mikis’ songs.
People applauded when the coffin was taken out of the chapel where it laid in state for three days and at the end of the funeral service that lasted one hour.
From the Athens Cathedral, the body of Mikis Theodorakis will be taken to the port of Piraeus, where the last journey will start at 5 p.m.
Following his last wish, Theodorakis will belaid to rest at the cemetery of Galatas village by Chania on the island of Crete, next to the graves of his parents and brother.
The band of Piraeus Municipality is scheduled to play Mikis’ songs when the coffin will arrive at the port, while Chania is preparing a ceremony to honor the great composer.
Mikis Theodorakis pased away in his home in Athens last Thursday at the age of 96, having lived a full life in terms of arts and politics.