(Oud, Lyra)(Oud, Lyra)
Yiannis Panagiotopoulos was born in the city of Patras, Greece. Early in his life he started explorations in music through rebetiko repertoire. Later while searching for the roots of this music and inspired by the colors of Anatoli, he became interested in learning oud and lyra (classic kemance). In 1997 he started his studies on theory of tropical musical systems of Greece and Anatoli (makam), working close to Christos Tsiamoulis at the Department of Greek Traditional Music of the Patras civic concervatoire. He holds the diploma of Byzantine Music since 2005. Yiannis has also participated in Master Classes and seminars, under recognized oud masters as Necati Celik and Yurdal Tokcan (Turkey), Charbel Ruhana (Lebanon), Kamel Ferjiani (Tunisia), Omar Bashir (Iran) and renowned lyra masters as Socrates Sinopoulos (Greece) and Derya Turkan (Turkey). Of particular importance are also his studies in Cairo, at the ‘House of Oud’ under Nasiir Samma and his collaborators and the cooperation with the couple Ghassan & Dina el Youssef at Cairo’s Opera (2008). He has participated in numerous concerts, organized by various organizations and institutions such as conservatoires, music schools, theatrical performances, universities, Patras Music School (where he teaches the last 10 years) . Also he has participated in concerts organized by international organizations, such as the International Culture and Art Festival at Buyukcekmece , Turkey, the International Festival of Percussive Arts Society ‘Days of Percussion 2012’, the European Project ‘Collaborations Comenius Regio’ on traditional music , Pescara, Italy. He has also collaborated with various musicians in numerous CD recordings. In 2010, he founded The Traditional Music Department at the Patras Philarmonic Conservatoire. He co- founded the traditional music group “EARINI ZYGIA” in 2003, expressing the music polymorphism of Greece. In 2010, he founded the music group “MOUSAYETES” which performs music influenced from Balkan, Asia Minor, fusion and jazz. In 2011, he founded “FLAMARABENCO”, a music group that unites traditional music from Andalucía, Arabia and wider East. The same year, he also formed the music group "VEGA", in which acoustic and world music is combined with piano. At the same time he forms the musical ensemble "Octoechos" converting Byzantine musical texts( Kratima) from vocals to instrumental. Since 2012, he builds lyra instruments.