History of the cultural meeting place
Hellenikon Idyllion
 (as at 10/4/2010)


In order to tell the story of Hellenikon Idyllion to those who are interested, we summarised the most important events and information.


Its history began in the 1990s


The founder Andreas Drekis – son of an orthodox priest from Egion – started to spread the idea of Hellenikon Idyllion (which is situated in a beautiful place) and its aims throughout Greece and whole Europe with a great effort.

It is Andreas Drekis` desire to make cultural and spiritual values – which are endangered to get lost – new and intensively able to experience.

After finishing the Humanistic Grammar School of Egion, Andreas Drekis studied national economics at the University of Bern. His tutor was Prof. Egon Tuchtfeld.

In 1966 Andreas Drekis suggested the increase of the GDP within a seminar called “the aims of economical policy”. According to him, this suggestion was a new science, which he called the “doctrine of people’s luck”. It was developed in order to do “luck research” and set qualitative value judgments by a cooperation of all sciences which should keep economical policy aims always in mind. Especially the effective increase of the quality of human life is important, which quantitatively is not easy to measure. Twelve years later these ideas showed up in public discussions. Today luck is researched as the yardstick of abundance   by nowadays famous psychologists and economists. For further information read the article published in April 2003 in the German magazine “Spiegel“http://wissen.spiegel.de/wissen/dokument.html?id=26740797&top=SPIEGEL&suchbegriff=Gluecksforschung&quellen=%2BBX%2CWIKI%2C%2BSP%2C%2BMM%2CALME%2C%2BMEDIA&vl=0  


Andreas Drekis manages Hellenikon Idyllion in Selianitika since 1990. He made the construction plans for the building by himself to make sure that the accommodations bring up a steady dialogue with the artistic natural garden which animates the guests to a creative correlation in music and culture.

Hellenikon Idyllion is a garden of muses and the free philosophical, classic Greek spirit. The apartments and bungalows are situated right in the middle of the wonderful garden. Because of the huge terraces and verandas on which grapes scramble up, the guests are in touch with the garden, its cultural occurrences and  its fruits (there are 10 sorts of grapes as well as oranges, grapefruits, lemons, medlars, pomegranates, olive-trees and fig-trees).

a libray with books in Greek and German plus a pavilion with a concert piano, several music instruments, rooms for practices and two open air theaters are availably. The profitable infrastructure of the terrain and the posture directly at the beach and the village offer the unique possibility for recreation, inspiration, international collaboration and creativity in arts, music and classical Greek literature. You will find further information on this site:  http://www.idyllion.gr/AllgemE.htm



The first visitors: Choirs, Orchestras, Conductors

In 1991, Alois Springer, the German outstanding conductor and fivefold laureate of international prizes (among others, he won the Koussevitzky-Conducting- and the Dimitri-Mitropoulos prize with gold medal in New York) was one of the first guests at Hellenikon Idyllion. He detected the spirit of the Hellenikon Idyllion.

Leonard Bernstein’s personal co-operator (conductor of the New York philharmonic orchestra, chief conductor of the philharmonic orchestra Hungarian, second chief conductor of the radio Luxemburg and conductor of the Berkshire Festivals in Tanglewood/ USA for several years) discerned Andreas Drekis’ vision. The comparison with the great music-camp Tanglewood  - the summer residency of the Boston Symphony Orchestra - forced on him, and from now on, despite his worldwide engagement, he decided to co-operate to unite artistic people at this idyllic place of the spirit of the muses.

Since the first orchestra-workshop, he is not only a yearly guest at the Hellenikon Idyllion; as a member of the jury and conductor he conveys Greek composers and European orchestras. Last time, he was at Hellenikon Idyllion was with the students-symphony-orchestra from Marburg. On February 5th 2005 he conducted the “Berliner Symphoniker” at a benefit concert in Berlin.



In the same year, the youth symphony orchestra of Schleswig Holstein, which counts 65 members and will be at the Hellenikon Idyllion for the fourth time in August 2005, visited Hellenikon Idyllion under the direction of Hajo Jobs. Furthermore, a choir with string orchestra from Oldenburg visited the Hellenikon Idyllion in autumn with 80 members, who combined their music-exercises with concerts and archaeological sightseeing. Thus it happened that 80 musicians performed the Byzantine clerical song “Ti ypermaxho” in the hall of the philharmonic orchestra Egion, which the conductor Nikos Butsinos specially edited for choir and orchestra. The conductor and the bishop of Egion were present at the concert. It was a great success: numerous visitors were delighted.


In 1992 the youth symphony orchestra Leipzig under direction of the conductor Ivan Ivanovits visited Hellenikon Idyllion. The climax of his programme was the first release of a play for orchestra, soprano and tenor, the epigram “O xein angellein Lakedaimoniois“(Oh stranger, annunciate the spartanes) in classic Greek, which Nikos Butsinos composed by order of Andreas Drekis. This happened to honour the Spartanes, who tumbled in the battle of Thermopylai against the Persian army. The world premieres took place in the medieval castle Chlemuzi in front of 1500 listeners and in Selianitika on the main square right by the sea under attendance of the current minister of defence Spilios Spiliotopulos.  


Classical Language, Literature and Philosophy

The international two-week-seminar with the title “Speak and think in classic Greek” began. In the whole world there is no similar project to bring the old Greek language and the spiritual contents of the old Greek literature alive.

This unique idea and initiative of Andreas Drekis arrests the attention of admirers and enthusiasts of the antique culture until today.

It was conducted and realized until 1995 by the German philologist Thomas Fuchs, who is a preeminent appreciator of this language. With an extensive vocabulary research he created a basis to talk to each other about today’s life in the Attic language.

Then, the philologist and historian Helmut Quack from Husum took over the direction. Besides the Old Greek literature, he loves the New Greek, and he likes to place philosophical topics in the centre of the seminars.

He himself searches for fitting texts, which are read, explained and discussed in the attic language by the participants.

Thus, the attic language is used for two weeks for valuable spiritual contents in the garden of the muses. Many participants are joining the seminars of the following years, as this is the single place worldwide where they can get accustomed to the language that intensively.


Every time, the leader of the exchange holds seminars in German and New Greek about a topic connected with the exchange for an interested public from the area between Aigion and Patras, for example about “Goethe’s Greek inspiration” or “late antique religions and the christianity”.

During the last days of the seminar, the participants write texts in the attic language themselves, mostly humorous dialogs, which they play at the final event to the remaining guests and friends of Hellenikon Idyllion on stage or on the lawn.

For further information, visit our websites:

http://www.idyllion.gr/InhaltClassG.htm  and http://www.idyllion.gr/Programm2005.htm


In 1998, the international “attic competition” was founded by Andreas Drekis.

Short stories, which must be written in the attic (Classical Greek) language and which must treat a philosophical or literary topic have been looked for.

This competition in the frame of the mentioned classic Greek dialogs-seminar is going to take palce at Hellenikon Idyllion the 7th time this year. Helmut Quack and further philologists are proof-reading the presented texts together with Andreas Drekis and decide about the winners and the prizes.

For further information, visit our website http://www.idyllion.gr/InhaltClassG.htm


Until today, Hellenikon Idyllion lodged about 80 orchestras and choirs, and a huge audience was always visiting the more than 400 concerts. The entrance to all the arrangements was free.


One of the most important events at Hellenikon Idyllion was the international composer competition in 2002.

Musicians had to compose the antic Penthalon with its sport topics: running, long jump, wrestling, javelin and discus.


The resonance was huge: 21 composers from 11 countries participated in this competition.  The eleven best works were awarded; one of them was by the composer Nikos Konstantinidis (professor for composition at the university Lousiana, USA).

His composition was played in four cities of Greece by the Strasbourg  symphony orchestra, which visited Hellenikon Idyllion in July 2003.

In September 2002, the choir from Malta came to Hellenikon Idyllion and interpreted the wrestling match from the composition of the English winner Andrew March.


Last year, another award-winning play by Spyros Mazis was introduced by the youth orchestra and choir of Meran, Italy by the conductor Richard Sigmund. On 21st August at the antic  theatre of Argos; on 23rd August at the antic theatre of Oiniades and on 26th August at Hellenikon Idyllion.

Moreover, it should be mentioned that the Jury members were: Werner Schulze, the German conductor Alois Springer and the Greek conductor Rafail Pylarinos.

For more information please see our website: www.idyllion.gr/kompositionswettbewerb.htm



Lots of Greek and foreign young talents were given the opportunity to perform at events in Recitales.

Last year, 13-year old prodigy Arsensis Selalmasithis from Patras was performing Mendelson’s violin concert and items by Paganini.


In 2003, the conductor Walter Kempfel was one of the conductors of international reputation, who visited Hellenikon Idyllion with his orchestra and performed there. He already conducted at the philharmonic orchestras of Berlin and Tokyo, and will visit the Hellenikon again this year with the professional orchestra ‘Bavarian Classics’ from Munich. Greek solists will also play a part in the programme. They will perform Mozart.

For more information: www.idyllion.gr/Programm2005.htm 



Two-day recitations, seminars, symposiums on topics like literature, poetry and classical philosophy took place during the last years in the garden, both classical and new Greek poets like Sappho, Homer, Seferis, Kavafis, Takis Antoniou in cooperation with the consolidation of Greek authors and the literary magazine “Omprela” and other personalities. concerts by invited guests from Athens and its surrondings are always part of the programme.


For press articles from Greek and foreign magazines dedicated to the unique idyllic garden of Epikur and especially the numerous cultural arrangements in the Hellenikon Idyllion, which are offered in many cities in Greece to a broad public, visit the site



Parallel, in 2001 the Hellenikon Idyllion founded the union of public utility “friends of the Hellenikon Idyllion” with the intention to make the aims known more efficient with the help of active culture-amateur members. Honourable members of the union are the professor of the technical university and former cultural minister of Greece, Dimitris Nianias, and the Greek- American employer Theodoros Spyropoulos, president of the Greek- American council.


 This year, we can lodge nine up to eleven symphony orchestras and choirs. The organisation of 40 concerts in different cities in Greek has already begun, parallel to the arrangements in our garden of the muses.


Two great literature and musical arrangements will also be prepared this year.

First, the German philosophy student Franz Kaprik writes a lyrical libretto for an opera in classic Greek at the moment. The story of the opera plays partly in the time of classical Greek. An international competition of the symphonic composition of the opera’s libretto will be announced soon!

International contest 2009-2010
to set an opera of an ancient Greek written Libretto to music, which is about the sunken ancient city "Helike" and its soon to be expected finding and the triumph of the archaeological research


Secondly, a production of Professor Werner Schulze, composer, scientist, and professor at Vienna university, which brings new impulses into music. On 22nd August, „Anchibasie- philosophy as a muse“, inspirited by philosophical fragments of Empedokles and Heraklit, will be presented by the music-ensemble Dithyrambos from Vienna for the first time. The composer will be present.


Before this performance there will be a workshop at Hellenikon Idyllion, managed by professor Werner Schulze (www.werner-schulze.at)


“Hidden harmony is more powerful than apparent.” Heraklit’s fragments an platon’s timaios.


NEW!!"Agon Armonias", the new poetry and composition competition in 2011 for young people


Website: www.idyllion.gr   and the new website  www.idyllion.eu

and  the  Press about Hellenikon Idyllion   Press Release       http://www.idyllion.gr/PresseE.htm

E-Mail: hellenikon@idyllion.gr

phone: 0030 26910 72488 or mobil phone 0030 6972263356