In a joyous and reverential atmosphere, on December 10th, 2023 the Center for Hellenic Studies at the University of Chicago proudly hosted the second annual event, “Byzantine Christmas II:
Hymns, Chants, and Carols.” Attended by approximately 80 people, including members of the Greek Community of Chicago, the event featured the participation of the choir of the Holy Metropolis of Chicago, “Agios Damaskinos,” as well as students from the Hellenic Schools “Athena.”
Professor Anastasia Giannakidou, the Director of the Center for Greek Studies, graciously extended a warm welcome to all attendees, taking the opportunity to share the exciting news of the creation of a new chair for the teaching of Modern Greek language at the University of Chicago— thanks to the generous gift of Mr. Alexandros Pissios of Chicago IL.
The establishment of this position has been an important goal for Center of Hellenic Studies, and we are grateful to Mr. Pisios for his partnership and support. There will be a separate announcement regarding this news soon.
Distinguished guests at the event included the Consul General of Greece in Chicago, Mrs. Georgia Tasiopoulou, the President of the Holy Metropolis of Chicago Choir, Mr. Alexandros Magdalinós, the Director of the Hellenic Schools “Athena,” Mr. Dimitrios Georgakopoulos, and the The Dean of Humanities of the University of Chicago Prof. Deborah Nelson.
The program commenced with the choir performing Christmas hymns, followed by the student choir singing festive carols. The event concluded with the traditional singing of carols by the Director of the Center for Greek Studies, Professor Anastasia Giannakidou. In her closing remarks, the Cook County Treasurer, Mrs. Maria Pappas extended warm wishes to all attendees and emphasized the important role of tradition for the Hellenic identity in Greece and in the diaspora.
The University of Chicago’s Center for Greek Studies is honored to have facilitated this cultural and musical celebration for the Hellenic community of Chicago and the University of Chicago for the second consecutive year, fostering a sense of unity and festive spirit. For more information about the Center for Greek Studies and upcoming events, please visit [https://hellenicstudies.uchicago.edu/].