Paxos Festival

Vasilis Smanis

Vasilis Smanis was born in the village of Lefka in the mountainous area of Nafpaktia in 1954. He entered the world of music through church music as both his father and grandfather were priests. He learned to love the countryside and its lifestyle.

He studied chemistry in the Athens University and during his student years he worked as a musician and instrument maker playing and building guitars, bouzouki and lutes. He later studied traditional greek music next to Simon Karas and received his diploma in Byzantine music with distinction next to teacher Ioannis Papachronis. He taught Greek traditional music in the Simon Karas School for the Conservation of National Music and at the Zisis Foundation, in the Filippos Nakas Conservatory and in other schools.

He has collaborated with the Ministry of Education in creating and promoting programs about enhancing artistic education in Greek schools and with “Kamerata”, the orchestra of the Athens Megaron in the organization of educational concerts for children.

He has studied greek music in all its depth as a performer and an instrument maker through his enormous personal collection of gramophone recordings but also through his own in situ recordings in various parts of Greece.

He has participated in more than 500 concerts in Greece and abroad. He has edited music publications referring to traditional songs, Christmas carols etc. He is a graduate of the Athens medical school. Currently he works as a chemistry high school teacher. He is married and a father of two boys.