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Hellenic and Jewish choirs amaze with joint performance of ‘The Ballad of Mauthausen’ in Sydney




The Australian Hellenic Choir (AHC) and the Sydney Jewish Choral Society (SJCS) amazed the crowd with their joint performance of The Ballad of Mauthausen at an event in Sydney on Sunday, October 30.

The concert was held in the Clancy Auditorium at the University of New South Wales and was attended by a number of official guests including the Consul General of Greece in Sydney, Ioannis Mallikourtis; Archbishop Makarios of Australia; Rabbi Dr Benjamin Elton; the Chair of the Ethnic Communities Council of NSW Inc, Peter Doukas OAM; the CEO of the NSW Jewish Board of Deputies, Darren Bark; the President of the AHC, Jim Tsolakis; and the Chairperson of the SJCS, Anne Spira; among many others.

Emcee and Non-Executive Director at SBS, Vic Alhadeff, kickstarted the event and welcomed everyone in attendance. Mr Alhadeff then explained how The Ballad of Mauthausen was written to convey the love of a Greek prisoner-of-war for a doomed Jewish prisoner in the Nazi slave labour camp of Mauthausen in Austria.

After this introduction, the AHC and the SJCS emerged onto the stage to perform the famous ballad, which has lyrics by Greek poet Iakovos Kambanellis and music by the world-acclaimed Greek composer Mikis Theodorakis.

The AHC was guided by Musical Director Leon Vitogiannis, whilst the SJCS was under Musical Director Rose Grausman.

There were a number of musical pieces performed including Heal Us Now, The First Words of Christ, and A Russian Jewish Folksong. The Ballad of Mauthausen was the perfect finale to the concert with its four parts – Song of Songs, Andoni, The Fugitive, and When the War is Over.

The concert concluded with a loud round of applause from everyone in attendance.

*Photos copyright Nick Bourdaniotis / Bourdo Photography.

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