Dionysis Grammenos is the Founder & Artistic Director of the Greek Youth Symphony Orchestra.
The Greek Youth Symphony Orchestra (GYSO) was founded in 2017, consisting of young Greek musicians from all parts of Greece and abroad. Based on the respective European standards of National Youth Orchestras, the GYSO aims to identify, train and promote young Greek musicians in the symphonic and operatic repertoire, while offering them the opportunity to participate in concerts and collaborate with internationally renowned artists, conductors, soloists and tutors.
The GYSO’s work has been recognized internationally with its selection as a member of the European Federation of National Youth Orchestras, where it is the only representation from Greece. Inter alia, this collaboration provides its musicians with the opportunity to represent the Orchestra abroad, collaborating with other National Youth Orchestras, in the framework of the exchange programme MusXchange, which is supported by the European Commission’s Creative Europe Programme.
Among the most notable performances of the orchestra was its debut at the Konzerthaus Berlin, as part of the international Young Euro Classic festival, performing selected Greek Dances by Skalkotas and Beethoven’s “Eroica” Symphony. The concert was held as part of the Orchestra’s summer tour in Delphi, Corfu and Berlin, with an anniversary programme dedicated to the 200 years since the Greek revolution and it took place under the auspices of, HE the President of the Republic, Katerina Sakellaropoulou.
It is also the first orchestra to be invited by the Hellenic Parliament to perform at the Parliament Mansion, as part of the European Conference of Presidents of Parliament of CoE member states. The concert was broadcasted live via tv-channels and web to all the European Parliaments.
Significant moments were also the performances in the halls of the Greek National Opera at the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center and the collaboration with the Athens & Epidaurus Festival, where musicians of the orchestra participated in concerts in Athens and Ravenna, performing Beethoven’s 9th Symphony under the baton of conductor Riccardo Muti.
Other highlights of the Orchestra’s trajectory are the commissioning of new works to Greek composers and two video recordings, with the most prominent one being of Mahler’s “Symphony No. 1”, conducted by Johannes Debus, Music Director of the Canadian Opera Company.
Leading international artists have performed with the GYSO, including Johannes Debus, Anna Fedorova, Anneleen Lenaerts, Daniel Ottensamer, Vassilis Varvaressos, Hyeyoon Park, Eivind Ringstad, Alexandra Soumm, as well as the actor Aimilios Chilakis.
Being education the key focus, the GYSO also carries out a series of activities to familiarize young audiences with symphonic music, giving them the opportunity to interact creatively with the members of the orchestra through open rehearsals, seminars and workshops. At the same time, the GYSO is the first orchestra in Greece to use virtual reality technology through the innovative EλΣΟΝ VR project, offering the audience an unprecedented experience of viewing classical music concerts.
Participation of young musicians in GYSO’s programmes and other activities is free of charge through the funding that GYSO secures. Its work is supported by the John S. Latsis Public Benefit Foundation, which is its Founding Donor, The Hellenic Initiative, AEGEAS, the Bodossaki Foundation, the Aikaterini Laskaridis Foundation, and AEGEAN as an air carrier sponsor.
Since 2020 it is an Orchestra in Residence at Megaron – the Athens Concert Hall.