Kourkoulos Nikos

Kourkoulos Nikos

Born: 05-12-1934
Died: 30-01-2007
From: Greece, Athens

Biography

Nikos Kourkoulos (Greek: Νίκος Κούρκουλος) was a highly respected Greek theatrical and film performer, one of the most talented and recognizable actors in Greece of modern times. Kourkoulos is best known to Greek audiences for playing "Angelos Kreouzis" in Oratotis miden, but he also appeared in other movies such as To Homa vaftike kokkino, Exodos kindynou, O Astrapogiannos, O Katiforos among others.


Life and career

Nikos Kourkoulos grew up in the Athens district of Zografou. Sports and football were his loves. He belonged to Panathinaikos roster during his school years. Acting came before him rather accidentally. As he himself had claimed, he took the plunge to become an actor after reading books on theatre.[citation needed]


He studied acting at the National Theatre of Greece's School of Drama, and made his stage debut in a 1958 Athens production of Alexandre Dumas, fils' La dame aux camélias, opposite Ellie Lambeti and Dimitris Horn.


He was one of the founders of the prestigious musical group, Proskinio and appeared in the 1967 Broadway musical, Illya Darling, with Melina Mercouri, in a role for which he was nominated for a Tony award as a best supporting actor.


For most of the 1960s/70s, Kourkoulos' success was unparalleled by any other Greek actor, except Dimitris Papamichael, but Kourkoulos' choice of material was more challenging than the latter's.[citation needed] He created his personal group in the early 1970s, with a repertory which included, among others, Franz KafkaKafka's The Trial, Arthur Miller's View from the Bridge and Brecht's The Threepenny Opera. His last stage appearance was in the title role of Sophocles' Philoktitis (1991) at the restored ancient theater of Epidaurus in southern Greece. In 1995, he was named as Artistic Director of the National Theatre of Greece, an institution he managed to turn into a profitable organization without compromising on artistic integrity.


His film career was successful: he starred in many films from the late 1950s until the early 1980s. His most commercial films have been melodramas with a social background, like Oratotis miden (Ορατότης Μηδέν) (1970).


He was awarded twice at the Thessaloniki Film Festival with the Best Actor Prize for his performance in Adistaktoi (Αδίστακτοι 1965) and Astrapogiannos (Αστραπόγιαννος 1970). For five (5) years (1975-1980) he was President of the Society of Greek Theatre Actor-Managers.


Nikos Kourkoulos died at the Errikos Dynan Hospital, Athens, on 30 January 2007, after a long battle with cancer, aged 72. He was survived by his companion of twenty years, Marianna Latsi (daughter of Greek shipping billionaire Yiannis Latsis), and four children: Errieta and Philip from his relationship with Marianna Latsis, and Melita and Alkis from his legal marriage.

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