Marinella (Μαρινέλλα) Bookmark and Share


20 May 1938

Marinella’s career has spanned several decades. She was born Kyriaki Papadopoulou, in the city of Thessaloniki in northern Greece. She released her first song in 1957, 'Nitsa Elenitsa' ('Little Helen'). Her early career was marked by her collaboration with singer Stelios Kazantzidis.

Marinella was the first Greek singer to participate in the Eurovision Song Contest of 1974, placing eleventh with the song 'Ligo krasi, ligi thalassa kai to agori mou' ('A little wine, a little sea and my man'). She also performed in several Greek musicals, both as singer and actress. Her popularity rose in the 70's and 80's, with a string of successful albums and live shows. She developed a new standard for shows in the Greek night clubs, introducing costumes, dancing, and special lighting effects. Many of today's popular Greek singers (Anna Vissi, Despina Vandi etc.) have modelled their shows on Marinella's shows of the 80's.

In 1998, Marinella performed in the Megaron Music Hall of Athens, performing her older hits to great acclaim. In 2002, she collaborated with George Dalaras. They gave concerts in Athens and Thessaloniki as well as abroad. The tour was entitled 'Mazi' ('Together') and the double CD reached platinum status. In 2004, she released a brand new album with new songs by Nikos Antypas and Lina Nikolakopoulou. In the same year she performed at the closing ceremony of the 2004 Summer Olympics.

In 2005, Marinella released a new album titled 'Tipota den ginete tyhea', composed by famous Greek composer and lyricist Giorgos Theofanous. The album reached gold status and includes duets with famous Greek singers, such as Antonis Remos, Glykeria and Kostas Makedonas. In 2006, 2 new compilations of Marinella were officially released, the first titled 'Sti skini' and containing older live recordings and the second one titled 'Ta logia ine peritta - 50 chronia tragoudi', which is a complete 8 cds boxset with Marinella's greatest hits from the beginning of her career till her collaboration with Kostas Hatzis at 'Recital'.

Marinella returned to nightlife by performing with Antonis Remos in the winter season 2006-2007 at Athinon Arena. It was a much anticipated show in Greece, especially given that Marinella had not appeared in any music club for 10 years. Her great quality of voice and the strength of her performances turned this live show to the most successful one for this year in Athens! Marinella is now continuing presenting her live show at Pyli Axiou Music Hall in Thessaloniki. Even though Marinella is often considered a singer of folk songs, her range is quite broad and has included a variety of musical styles including traditional, laika, pop, blues, and jazz. Marinella is characterised as 'The Great Lady of Song' in Greece, where she is regarded with great respect. She rarely makes public appearances, and her concerts are few.

On the web:

- Marinelle's website: http://www.marinella.dom.gr

What do we think:

DB: Marinella is the pop variety of rembetika but not laiko. Confused? Don't be just think of what greek music sounds like at your local caterer and then imagine it suddenly sounds hip. Marinella avoids being corny with a repertoire that has everything in it to be corny. But it isn't. Great voice and I assume a big gay icon in Greece.

PR: Pop music can not get any more Greek than Marinella's output. She probably invented the genre entriely herself. After a career spanning a few decades and still going strong, Marinella deserves all the respect one can give to a diva of her statue. I have to say that her music is sometimes a bit too Greek and popular for my taste, but her album sales in Greece prove me wrong I suppose.

If you like this, you probably like.. / european counterparts:

Doris Dragovic (FRS Yugoslavia)

Katja Ebstein (Germany)

Recomended abums:

♪♪♪- Stalia Stalia - 1968

♪♪♪- Enas Mythos - 1970

♪♪♪ - Marinella tou simera - 1978

♪♪ - Ta prota mou tragoudia - 1978

♪♪♪ - S'agapo - 1979

♪♪♪- I agapi mas - 1985

♪♪♪♪♪ = outstanding album, an absolute must-have
♪♪♪♪ = great album, highly recomended
♪♪♪ = nice album
♪♪ = be careful, requires listening before buying
♪ = best to be avoided