2016, October 18
Robert Sutherland, "Maria Callas, as I knew her"     

Writes Robert “My book about the time I spent with Maria Callas is called Maria Callas, Diaries of a friendship.  In the talk I try to cover all the questions which have been put to me over the years about Maria - her great success as a singer and actress, her relations with her family, her time with Aristotle Onassis, and also some stories which involve Scotland and the Scots. Her final years were not happy but we kept in touch.”

2016, November 15th
Dr Maria Economou, Glasgow University "Greek Museums today: changing roles and challenges"

The talk will outline the different types of museums in Greece and give a brief history of their development. It will mainly focus on the challenges of the last few years and how different types and size of museums have addressed them. Drawing from a range of sources and the speaker’s personal experience collaborating with and studying Greek museums over a number of years, the talk will refer to the communication strategies and approaches of different Greek museums, the audiences they target, and the different means of increasing accessibility, including new exhibitions, education programmes, and use of digital technologies. 

2017, January 10th
Vasilopitta evening at Elia Greek Restaurant, George Square

2017, January 31st
KARKALAS LECTURE by Dr Despoina Ignatiadou, National Archaeological Museum of Athens "Elite doctors in ancient Macedonia"

 The surviving iconography of pre-Roman doctors is very limited and in an early representation we can see the doctor seated on a folding stool and leaning on the stick usually indicating the free citizen. Later, the studious doctor is shown reading from a scroll and represented in the style of a philosopher or poet. Galen himself had already attracted attention to the dual identity of the physician by writing the treatise That the best physician is also a philosopher. He thus illustrated the status of the literate professional who cannot merely read but is also himself the author of the administered prescriptions and of medical treatises. In Macedonia, old and recent finds illuminate a small but important production of medical-and-writing compartment cases that verify the existence of elite healers mentioned in the sources.  Dr Despina Ignatiadou is Curator of Sculpture at the National Archaeological Museum, Athens. She studied Archaeology at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki and Conservation of Antiquities at the Institute of Archaeology, University of London.  Her latest book is her PhD thesis on Colorless glass for the elite in ancient Macedonia (Thessaloniki 2013).  Her many research interests include the history of glass, ancient jewellery, ancient medicine, burial customs, and ancient religion and symbolism.  

2017, February 14th
Nicolas Maraziotis with Jose Javier Ucendo "Greek music of the 20th century" with live performance

Greece, during the 20th century, went through fundamental changes, political and cultural alike. From the era of the Greek operetta to poetry and art songs through the devastating consequences of WWII, we will meet the great composers who left their personal imprint and formed the Greek music as we know it today. In this recital we will focus on the inter-war period of 1920 - 1930 as well as the post-war period until the 1970s.


Nicolas Maraziotis (b. 1988)  Greek tenor Nicolas Maraziotis is a graduate of the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland where he completed his Masters of Music degree in Vocal Performance under the tutelage of Amand Hekkers. Nicolas did his undergraduate degree in Music and Music Technology (BA Dual Hons) at Keele University after which he returned to Greece to study at the Opera Studio of Patras with conductor Kharalampos Goyos, director Alexandros Efklidis and director/musician Theodore Abazis.  His operatic work includes Mozart’s Der Schauspieldirektor (Monsieur Vogelsang) and Th. Sakellaridis’ Satanerie (Pamikos).   He has participated in several recitals and opera scenes such as Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte (Tamino), Le nozze di Figaro (Don Basilio), Don Giovanni (Don Ottavio), Beethoven’s Fidelio (Jacquino), Delibe’s Lakmé (Gerárld) and he has also collaborated as a soloist with the Municipal & Regional Theatre of Patras, the International Festival of Patras, the Plucked Strings Orchestra Municipality of Patras, the Beggars’ Operas and the Athens Academica Orchestra under the baton of Dimitris Botinis.  His chorus work includes Mozart’s Great Mass, Beethoven’s Choral Fantasy and Bach’s St. John Passion. Forthcoming productions include the role of Testo (Monteverdi’s Il Combattimento di Tancredi et Clorinda) by the Dutch National Opera.

José Javier Ucendo (b. 1990)  Spanish pianist José Javier Ucendo started his musical studies at the age of 9 in his hometown and was awarded in the Piano competition of his Conservatoire during the last year of his elementary studies. At the age of 19 he moved to Castellón to continue his Undergraduate studies with Prof. Juan Carlos Cornelles. In 2014 he was accepted as Master student in the Estonian Music Academy in the classroom of Prof. Ivari Ilja and Prof. Ave Sikk. During the last year of his masters, he was awarded an Erasmus scholarship at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland under Prof. Fali Pavri’s tutorship, where he keeps studying as master student in Accompaniment with Prof. Scott Mitchell funded by the RCS Trust. He has participated in several courses and masterclasses with teachers like Boris Berman, Petras Geniusas, Claudio Martínez-Mehner, Peter Bithell or Marco Tezza among many others. Concerts and auditions include performances in Estonia, Spain, France and the UK. As accompanist, he often collaborates with soprano Héloïse Bernard, both were awarded in the last Lied-duo competition of the Estonian Music Academy.  

You can watch here a short video from that night's performance

YouTube Video

2017, March 14th
Jennifer Barclay "An octopus in my ouzo" with signing opportunity by the author

Jennifer Barclay is a freelance editor and writer who has lived on a number of Greek islands in the Dodecanese. It is about her dream life on Tilos (population 500) that inspired her book An Octopus in my ouzo: loving life on a Greek island which will be the subject of her talk to the Society.  She now lives on Karpathos.  Her other books reflecting her interest in travel include Meeting Mr Kim: Or How I Went to Korea and Learned to Love Kimchi  and The Traveller’s Friend.

2017, April 11th
Annual General Meeting at 19:00, followed by
Dr Zosia Archibald, University of Liverpool "The rise and fall of ancient Olynthos: new evidence" at 19:30

Olynthos in Macedonia is unique: it is the best known Classical Greek town because much of it has been excavated, so much has survived well and many houses were richly decorated with mosaics.  This talk will present new work at Olynthos by a British-Greek team which is providing exceptional detail on the layout of individual houses and how people lived there.  Most students of Classical antiquity know two things about Olynthos: that it was destroyed by Philip II of Macedon; and that it is the site with the best evidence of ancient housing anywhere in Greece prior to the Hellenistic Age. There is no doubt about the second proposition; but the first is a little more uncertain than at first appears.

The opportunity to start a new field project at Olynthos, which began in 2014, under the auspices of the British School at Athens, offers the chance to collect new information about the city’s life and history. The international Olynthos Project team, composed of experts from Greece, the USA, and the UK, as well as many EU countries, has already delivered new information in spades. This transforms the ways in which we will think about this extraordinary Archaic and Classical city in the future.   It has also been an opportunity to review what we really know about the history of Olynthos, not just in relation to the history of Athens, but also in terms of its local connections.  In this presentation I will explain why we should reconsider Olynthos as a key player in the battle for power in the Aegean, and what we can learn as a result about some of the other players, including Philip II of Macedon, and the city of Athens.  

Prior to the commencement of the proceedings, we will enjoy a short performance by the senior choir of the English School of Cyprus, conducted by Anne-Marie Tellalis.  The English School is a selective, UK curriculum school with over 1100 students, established in 1900 by Canon Frank Darvall Newham. Music has long been a tradition at the school and the school's Senior Choir is a big part of the community. Predominantly Greek Cyrpiot, the school has always catered for all the communities of Cyprus, including Turkish Cypriot, Maronite, Armenian and other international students. The Senior Choir has performed a wide variety of music, including Jazz and music from the Classical repertoire. However, folk songs hold a special place for us, especially Cypriot songs such as "To Yiasemin" (The Jasmine). Equally enjoyable for us to sing are the immortal songs of Greek composer Manos Hadzithakis (1925 - 1994) including the wistful song "To Pelago Einai Vathi" (The Ocean is Deep).  The two short videos below are from their performance on the night.

YouTube Video


YouTube Video