Dimitris Stefanou

Picture of Dimitris Stefanou
Dimitris Stefanou was born in Mytilini on the island of Lesvos in the NE Aegean in 1953. He studied at the National Conservatory with Mireille Flery (the well known soprano, rival and arch-enemy of Maria Callas at the Greek National Opera in the 1940s) and graduated in 1975 with "excellent" and first prize. At the beginning of his career at the Greek National Opera (1973), he was a member of the chorus and then (while still a student) a comprimario tenor. Sometimes he stepped in for the theater's main tenors, Pavlos Raptis, Giorgios Zervanos, Zachos Terzakis and Nikos Chatzinikolaou. Stefanou was quite inferior to them, with a rather unfocused voice and a poor ability to sustain the note.

Slowly he developed into one of the mainstay tenors of the National Opera, a dependable but never brilliant tenor. His career has been predominantly in Athens where he has sung, among others, in Rigoletto, Traviata, Trovatore, Werther, Cavalleria rusticana, Faust, Lucia di Lammermoor, Anna Bolena, Macbeth, Bohème, Vespri siciliani or Simon Boccanegra. He also participated in many operettas including several Greek ones.

Stefanou was also asked to sing some relatively new operas such as Prokofyev's Obruchenie v monastyre (Betrothal in a monastery) and Weill's Mahagonny. He was also a protagonist in several Greek operas including Spyros Samaras' Flora mirabilis, Manolis Kalomiris' Protomastoras and Samaras' Rhea. He last appeared in 2008, as Altoum.

His performances abroad have been limited to secondary Balkan opera houses like Belgrade, Novi Sad and Skopje, as well as the opera of Duisburg in Germany.

There are two recorded performances by him, Samaras' Rhea (where he sings Lysias) on a Lyra 1984 recording with the Sofia Radio Symphony Orchestra under Byron Fidetzis, and Weill's Aufstieg und Fall der Stadt Mahagonny where he sings a minor role, that of Jacob Schmidt. The latter is from a live 1978 performance at the Greek National Opera.

Dimitris Stefanou singsManon Lescaut: Ah! non v'avvicinate, with Giorgos N. Pappas
1986 Athens
In RA format
I wish to thank Daniele Godor for the recording.
I wish to thank Nicholas Peppas and Juan Dzazópulos for the biographical notes.
I wish to thank Stathis Arfanis for the picture (Fedora).

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