Legendary composer Mikis Theodorakis was buried in his native Crete on Thursday, accompanied by friends and family singing his songs and playing his famous ‘Zorba the Greek’.
Greek President Katerina Sakellaropoulou and Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis were present at the funeral at Agios Nikolaos Church and burial, at his family grave at hte village cemetery of Galata in Chania. He was laid to rest there, next to his parents and brother.
Mr Mitsotakis said, “Mikis Theodorakis will always be here. He will always be here, his work is immortal. A great Greek, a great composer. Today we say goodbye to him as he deserved. The last great Greek of the 20th century.”
The Greek Prime Minister said his songs will be hummed and sung by “ourselves, our children and our grand-children” in his memory.
The coffin carrying the late composer arrived at Agios Nikolaos Church in Galata just before 1pm Thursday afternoon (local time) where a funeral service got underway, led by the Metropolitan of Kydonia and Apokoronos Damaskinos with the participation of clerics throughout Crete.
Also present at the funeral were Greek Culture Minister Lina Mendoni, Citizen Protection Minister Takis Theodorikakos, main opposition leader Alexis Tsipras of the Radical Left Coalition (SYRIZA), Communist Party of Greece (KKE) General Secretary Dimitris Koutsoumbas, lawmakers from all political parties, the regional governor of Crete, Stavros Arnaoutakis, his family and crowds of friends and fans.
To prevent the spread of COVID-19, those who came to pay their last respects were spread outside the church.
Mikis Theodorakis, who died aged 96, created music to define Greece and the Greek identity in the eyes of the world.