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Madonna's Cheek


Hellenic American Union Theater

Presentation of Pantelis Boukalas’ conjectural autobiography of Georgios Karaiskakis


Georgios Karaiskakis may be a legend or a myth, but he is also something much more than that. He is history. Having taken up arms at a very young age and fighting to his death in Faliro, on April 23rd, 1827, his life, says author Pantelis Boukalas, has bequeathed us the most concise, most lucid summary of the Greek War of Independence. The resourceful man, ambitious brigand, and ingenious Greek was turned into a revolutionary by the Revolution itself, by the enormous intellectual and spiritual forces it unleashed.

Madonna’s Cheek, a piece of theater-style prose, is a conjectural autobiography   that draws on the writer’s imagination and a broad range of material including testimonials, historical texts, folk songs and folkloric references.

For those who cannot be physically present, the discussion will be livestreamed on the Hellenic American Union website ( and the Hellenic American Union YouTube channel (Hellenic American Union Athens - YouTube).



Vangelis Karamanolakis

Panos Maniotis

and the writer, Pantelis Boukalas


Also featuring Manos Achalinotopoulos, musician.

Pantelis Boukalas was born in Lesini in the proving of Mesolong, in 1957. He graduated from the Athens School of Dentistry and is a journalist at Kathimerini newspaper. He has authored the following books of poetry (in Greek): Αλγόρυθμος (1980), Η εκδρομή της ευδοκίας, Ο μέσα πάνθηρας, Σήματα λυγρά, Ο μάντης, Οπόταν πλάτανος, Ρήματα (Greek State Prize for Poetry 2010) and Μηλιά μου αμίλητη (2019). He has also published (in Greek) a volume of book reviews, titled ΕνδεχομένωςΣτάσεις στην ελληνική και ξένη τέχνη του λόγου (Attitudes in Greek and Foreign Literature); two volumes titled Hypotheses, featuring a collection of his editorials in Sunday Kathimerini; and the first three volumes of the series of essays on the Greek folk (demotic) songs titled «Πιάνω γραφή να γράψω...: Δοκίμια για το δημοτικό τραγούδι»Q: Όταν το ρήμα γίνεται όνομα: Η αγαπώ και το σφρίγος της ποιητικής γλώσσας των δημοτικών (Greek State Prize for Essay, 2017), Το αίμα της αγάπης: Ο πόθος και ο φόνος στη δημοτική ποίηση, and Κόκκιναχείλι εφίλησα: Το ταξίδι του φιλιού και ο έρωτας σαν υπερβολή (2019).

He has translated (into Modern Greek) Bion of Smyrna’s Epitaph of Adonis, the poems included in the volume titled Επιτάφιος λόγος – Αρχαία ελληνικά επιτύμβια επιγράμματα (Epitaphic Speech – Ancient Greek Epigrams on Funeral Steles), and Συμποτικά επιγράμματα της Παλατινής Ανθολογίας (Symposiac Epigrams of the Palatine Anthology). He has also translated Aeschylus’ Agamemnon (Municipal Peripheral Theater of Agrinio, 2005), Aristophanes’ Acharnians (National Theater, 2005), Euripides’ Trojan Women (Neos Kosmos Theater, 2010), Euripides’ Cyclops and Theocritus’ idyl of the same name (Athens Epidaurus Festival, 2017), Aristophanes’ Thesmophoriazusae (Athens Epidaurus Festival, 2018), Euripides’ Iphigenia in Aulis (National Theatre of Northern Greece, 2019) and Eleni (National Theatre of Northern Greece, 2021). His poems have been translated into Italian (tribute in Milanese journal Poesia, November 2014), Polish (the translation of Ρήματα was published in Gdansk in 2014), English, Albanian, Arabic, Spanish, Catalan (in the volume La busqueda del Sur, Barcelona, 2016), French (in the volume Poètes grecs du 21e siècle, Paris, 2017). and Russian. In 2018, he received his PhD in Modern Greek Literature from the University of Cyprus Department of Byzantine and Modern Greek Studies.

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