Every anniversary, every birthday, requires a conversation with history to help us highlight the event we honor and the importance it holds for us today.
Some of these symbolic anniversaries are an opportunity and a motive to process and reflect on the present and the paths we have traveled to arrive at it.
One such case is this year's March 25: the 200th anniversary of the Revolution of 1821, the anniversary of the uprise against the Ottoman Empire, the beginning of the turbulent sequence that led to present-day Greece.
The Greeks did not celebrate the centennial of the Revolution in 1921 as they would have liked, caught in the middle of the turmoil of the Asia Minor campaign.
This year, the pandemic is generating obstacles in the planning of the events we would hope to enjoy on the 200th anniversary.
Despite everything, the "Greece 2021" Committee, through the six projects and events prepared for the Anniversary of March 25, aspires to commemorate the day our ancestors ignited the flame of freedom and, through a virtual dialogue with them, highlight the outcome of their sacrifices and struggles and emphasize Greece's status today, after these 200 years.
The projections occurred simultaneously on the facades of 18 selected buildings, starting with the Hellenic Parliament building. It is a visual narrative of the Revolution of 1821 as seen through relevant works of art. It is the most significant projection mapping project ever attempted in Greece, and it is implemented by the Laboratory of Transformable Intelligent Environments (TUC TIE Lab) of the School of Architecture of the Technical University of Crete.
In addition to the history of the Revolution, the projections also emphasize the particular history and heroes of each city. The cities are Athens, Alexandroupolis, Heraklion, Thessaloniki, Ioannina, Kalamata, Corfu, Lamia, Larissa, Messolonghi, Naoussa, Nafplio, Piraeus, Rhodes, Syros, Tripoli, Chania, and Chios. The project had been programmed for March 25, but due to the pandemic restrictions, it was moved to June 12 and 13.
The movie is a documentary that imaginatively narrates the two centuries of modern Greece. It has been based on archival material and evidence. It approaches the subject by highlighting not only instances from our military and political history but also facts from the fields of science, arts, and everyday life. In essence, it attempts to display how through our successes, adversities, and setbacks, we arrived from general Makriyiannis' famous saying, "this is what we fought for," to what we are today: a modern, democratic, European state.
The film was shown to the public for the first time on March 25, 2021, on the ERT1 channel; it is available for viewing here and on the Committee's social media.
An ode to the Great and the Little Heroes of the 200 years, since behind every historical course, the people are always present. The project involves the public screening of images and biographical facts of 1000 historical persons who left their mark on Greece's modern history with their deeds.
These are renowned and famous persons who excelled in various social activity areas and ordinary people who made a difference with their contributions in a specific field. The material is screened on existing public display systems, in various places such as Urban Public Transportation, airports, train stations, ships, accredited commercial businesses and online.
The first 200 personalities were presented on March 25 on the Committee's website, and "Great Little Heroes" will continue to be screened throughout the anniversary year to highlight and pronounce 2021 as the "year of Greek women and Greek men."
The "Greece 2021" Committee created a unique collection of 14 collector coins to honor the course of the 200 years after the Revolution and preserve forever in our memory the bicentennial of the Revolution.
The Numismatic Programme is a central point of reference for the anniversary since it gives every Greek woman and every Greek man the opportunity to obtain keepsakes of exceptional sentimental value. Through the Numismatic Programme, the Committee honors every Greek region individually and highlights the emblematic personalities that connected their name with these regions.
In this context, during a symbolic event that took place on March 19, 2021, at the National Mint and in the presence of Deputy Finance Minister Theodoros Skylakakis and the Governor of the Bank of Greece Giannis Stournaras, the Committee, through its President Gianna Angelopoulos-Daskalaki, honored the people who contributed to the creation of the collection. To learn more about the Numismatic Programme, click here
The Greece 2021 Committee has printed a commemorative four-page publication on the anniversary of March 25, which appeared as the cover in all daily newspapers on March 24. It can be accessed in its digital form here.
This commemorative edition included messages by government and state leaders on the significance of the Revolution of 1821 and also on the course of the modern country. It also included information on the work and activities of the "Greece 2021" Committee.
The Committee asked beloved song maker and Assembly member Dionysis Savvopoulos to put together a small musical parade for 1821, on our remembrance and our identity. A small musical parade including gems from the Greek musical repertoire performed by familiar and treasured voices in unique recordings accompanied us in the celebration of the Revolution's bicentennial on March 25.
The March 25 event can be accessed here, and more musical narrations in the form of podcasts will be added throughout the year.