Abstracts of issue 21 (2013)

Yannis Belonis

Unknown facts on the life and work of George Axiotis during the period 1898-1924

George Axiotis (1875-1924) consists one of the most peculiar cases of the Greek music historiography, since, whilst his achievements in the first years upon his return from Italy (1901) – where he studied – earned him a leading role in the music developments of Greece, a few years later, disappointed by the music world of Athens, he departed for the Island of Myconos and since then rarely got involved in the country’s music life. Axiotis’ correspondence with his brotherly friend – descendant of an old naval family of Myconos, legal scientist, music lover (with sufficient know how in music), founder of the first press publication in Myconos, the Myconian Chronicles [Μυκονιάτικα Χρονικά] – Gianoulis Bonis (1878-1960), brings to light many unknown aspects of the life and work of the composer, sheds light on his views on various literary and music concerns, reveals the futile attempts to rejoin the Athens music cycle, disproves older speculations concerning people of his music cycle that turned against him or helped him, determines actual dates for some of his compositions and many more.

Amongst the total 25 letters of George Axiotis to his friend Gianoulis Bonis during the period 1898-1924, the first 8 were sent from Naples (1898-1900) and the following 16 from Myconos (1914-1924), whilst the last one was sent from Athens, only 3 months prior to the composer’s death. Their presentation aims to shed light on uncovered sides of the Greek music historiography during the crucial first quarter of the 20th century and at the same time to become the initiative for further research on the life and work of one of the most important representatives of Greek music, whose contribution to the art of composition hasn’t been evaluated yet and is no other than George Axiotis.

© Musicology