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A Unique Experience of Music and Mythology in Santorini

Symposion Santorini
Symposion. Perfect for any traveler with culture on the mind, Symposion is a unique cultural center on the island, with much to offer to those interested. Credit: Greek Reporter

Symposion, on the beautiful island of Santorini, offers one of the most distinct experiences combining music and mythology in the world.

Perfect for any traveler with culture on the mind, Symposion is a unique cultural center on the island, with much to offer to those interested.

Symposion on the island of Santorini

The center was founded and thought of by Argy Kakissis and Yannis Pantazis. It is located in Megalochori, a village outside of the two main towns of Fira and Oia but conveniently placed right next to the main port on Santorini, Athinios Ferry port.

It is housed in a renovated wine making space built at the turn of the last century by artisan Zorzis Ioannis Saliveros. During renovations, the team was careful to be respectful of the building’s history as well as the wider context of Megalochori, which has been lovingly preserved since the 17th century.

Symposion santorini
A selection of a traditional Greek bagpipe instrument, the “Tsampouna,” displayed at Symposion. Credit: Greek Reporter.

Symposion on Santorini island offers guests a unique experience through interactive tours, workshops, vintage instrument exhibitions, and original performances. The center is also inclusive of all ages, including children and adults in its programming, as well as being accommodating and welcoming of both patrons from the local community and tourists from far-flung places across the globe.

The center occupies an extensive indoor space including a performance space, a cafe named the Homeric Wine Cafe, an art shop and the instrument exhibition space. It also includes an outdoor garden, offering visitors the chance to get up close and personal with plants and herbs prominent in Greek mythology.

For as little as €10 ($11.83), individuals can experience a once-in-a-lifetime “Mythical Music Presentation and Tour,” which is a “innovative, interactive musical journey using mythological narration and fifteen hand-crafted wind and string instruments.”

The tour also includes a presentation of the historic converted former winery.

One of the founders, Pantazis, has a long list of credentials making him perfectly suited to running a space with such an intimate connection to music. Pantazis is a wind instrument conductor and a musician himself. He studied music theory and the saxophone.

flute making
Yannis Pantazis in the process of making an ancient Greek flute. Credit: Greek Reporter.

Pantazis is also an artisan, and is able to make multiple types of ancient and contemporary Greek instruments. He runs ancient Greek pipe making workshops, where he manages to make operational flutes within only three minutes.

flute making
Yannis Pantazis playing a flute he made in three minutes. Credit: Greek Reporter.

“It’s not a coincidence that we say ‘to play’ an instrument,” said Pantazis to santomaris.gr. “Symposion is our celebration of music and mythology, and we very much look forward to welcoming you – to learn, to listen, to enjoy, and even to make your own instrument!”

The co-founder of Symposion on Santorini, Kakissis, spoke to the same publication saying, “Our mission as a cultural centre is influenced by Greek mythology’s timeless relevance to life as it is lived today. Inspired by the nine muses, our work is about encouraging people to think differently about music, its history and the links between ancient and modern times.”

A must-visit on the island of Santorini, Symposion is not one to miss!

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