Vassilis Christopoulos - News

A discourteous replacement

On Saturday 10 May, one day after Vassilis Christopoulos' term as Artistic Director of the Athens State Orchestra expired, the Minister of Culture unexpectedly announced his replacement without prior notice and without even a "pro forma" word of thanks to Cristopoulos for his services. The press and musical community in Greece seem to be in a state of shock, wondering and speculating about the motives behind this discourteous move. Newspapers have been asking daily why a director who in three years – years of harsh financial crisis – dramatically improved the orchestra’s performance, doubled ticket sales, introduced a wide-ranging social and educational programme, and in so many ways changed the Orchestra's image for the better, had to be removed?


Uncertainty until the last minute

Less than a month before his term officially expires on 9 May, Vassilis Christopoulos still doesn't know whether he will be renewed as Director of the Athens State Orchestra! The responsible minister of Culture remains silent about the matter - despite all the pressure from the press. Greece does not seem able to brake the curse of last minute decisions...


Vassilis Christopoulos awarded Knight of the Order of Arts and Letters

On behalf of the French Minister of Culture, Ambassador of France to Greece, Mr. Jean-Loup Kuhn-Delforge, conferred on Vassilis Christopoulos the insignia of Knight of the Order of Arts and Letters (Chevalier dans l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres) in a ceremony at the French Residence in Athens on 18 September. The French Ambassador expressed his admiration for Mr. Christopoulos' artistic accomplishments and his country's gratitude for the conductor's "continuous efforts to present the richness of French music to the Greek and international public".


Vassilis Christopoulos to leave Constance in 2015

Vassilis Christopoulos has announced his decision not to seek a third term as Chief Conductor of the Südwestdeutsche Philharmonie Konstanz. He will leave the orchestra at the end of his second five-year contract in summer 2015.


Cancellation of the concert on 14 June

The Greek government in an unprecedented and unforeseen move on Tuesday 11 June has shut down the Greek Radio and Television, thus dismissing instantly all of its employees, including the members of the Greek Radio Choir, which ceased to exist there and then. The Athens State Orchestra has, therefore, sadly been obliged to cancel its concert with Verdi’s Requiem on 14 June, as it could no longer take place without the Greek Radio Choir, one of its basic participants.


Athens State Orchestra's growing success - June 2013

The Athens State Orchestra closed its winter season 2012-2013, with revenues from ticket sales up 45% compared with the previous season. Ticket sales increased by an impressive 90% compared with the 2010-2011 season, before Vassilis Christopoulos took over the orchestra, and even compared with the orchestra's average ticket income in the decade 2002-2012; this is despite the severe financial crisis in Greece. The figures were made public during a press conference on 21 May.


NDR Broadcast - 25 December 2012

Vassilis Christopoulos' performance of Saint-Saëns' "Christmas Oratorio" with the NDR Radiophilharmonie Hannover from the concert on 20 December will be broadcast on 25 December, 11am CET from NDR Kultur station. To listen to it on the internet follow this link.


International acclaim for the Athens State Orchestra - June 2012

June 2012 Gramophone edition listed Athens State Orchestra’s concert on 1st June at the Athens Megaron, this season’s final regular concert, as an unmissable musical event. Vassilis Christopoulos conducted Beethoven’s "Coriolan" overture, Prokofiev’s 3rd Piano Concerto with Dimitris Sgouros and Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring.


Another success for Athens State Orchestra: its designers, G Design Studio, have won two awards at this year's European Design Awards. Gold for the new logo of the Athens State Orchestra and silver for the Orchestra's monthly programmes. The ceremony was held on 26 May in Helsinki, World Design Capital for 2012, to honour last year's outstanding graphic design, illustration and interactive design achievements. The European Design Awards jury reviewed submissions of 523 design studios from 34 countries.


February 2012

Vassilis Christopoulos has joined International Classical Artists of London (, one of Europe's leading agencies for classical music.


May 2011

In May 2011 Vassilis Christopoulos was appointed Artistic Director of the Athens State Orchestra. He also remains Chief Conductor of the Southwest German Philharmonic Orchestra of Constance, a position which he holds since 2005.


November 2010

The charity Advent concert with the Bremen Philharmonic Orchestra on December 1st at 20:00 (CET) will be broadcasted live on radiobremen's Nordwestradio and online at


June 2010

The Southwest German Philharmonic Orchestra of Constance, under the direction of Vassilis Christopoulos, completes a triumphant concert tour in Japan! At the heart of it was a three-day cycle of Mozart's 12 last symphonies on 8th, 9th and 10th of June, held at the wonderful Sumida Triphony Hall in Tokyo. Organisers, public, and critics alike showed great enthusiasm at all the concerts throughout the tour.


May 2010

Two bits of very good news after the disappointment in March: on April the 29th, the city council of Constance unanimously approves the creation of a 6th violoncello position for the Southwest German Philharmonic Orchestra! This is the second time in two seasons that the orchestra grows.
And on May 4th, the CD "Mozart Arias" featuring the French soprano Géraldine Casey wins the Gabriel Dussurget prize for the best Mozart recording in 2009, one of the 20 gold Orpheuses awarded every year in Paris by the "Académie internationale du disque lyrique".


March 2010

Disappointing news for the Southwest German Philharmonic and its Chief Conductor: plans for a new Concert and Congress Hall were rejected by two-thirds of the people of Constance in a referendum on March 21st. While the public generally agrees that the orchestra undoubtedly needs a better venue – it plays in the "Konzil" where the historic Council of Constance took place between 1414 and 1418! – they nevertheless expressed concern about the expense of the particular project and multiple objections about the chosen location, including fear of heavy traffic congestion.


January 2010

The French label Passavant Music releases (end of 2009) a recording of Sergei Prokofiev's 3rd Piano Concerto with Sofja Gülbadamowa and the Southwest German Philharmonic Orchestra of Constance under the direction of Vassilis Christopoulos. The Russian pianist also interprets Prokofiev's 5th Sonata as well as excerpts from the piano transcription of his ballett "Romeo and Juliet".


December 2009

On short notice, Vassilis Christopoulos takes over the musical direction of Bach's Christmas Oratorio on 19th and 20th December in Constance, following Reinhard Goebel's withdrawal due to sudden illness.

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