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Biography

  • Born

    3 September 1926

  • Born In

    Korinthia, Peloponnisos, Greece

  • Died

    14 September 2022 (aged 96)

Irene Papas is a Greek actress and occasional singer, who has starred in over seventy films in a career spanning more than fifty years.
Irene Papas was born Irene Lelekou (Ειρήνη Λελέκου) in Chiliomodi outside Corinth, Greece. She began her early career in Greece, achieving widespread fame there, before starring in internationally renowned films such as The Guns of Navarone and Zorba the Greek, and critically acclaimed films such as Z and Electra. She is a leading figure in cinematic transcriptions of ancient tragedy since she has portrayed Helen in The Trojan Women, Clytemnestra in Iphigenia (film), and the homonymous parts in Electra and Antigone. In 1977, she starred in the film Mohammad, Messenger of God (also known as The Message) about the origin of Islam, and the message of prophet Mohammad.
She has recently appeared in the film, Captain Corelli’s Mandolin, and is currently working in theatre in Portugal.

One of the more unusual moments in Papas’ career came in 1970, when she guested on the album 666 by Greek rock group Aphrodite’s Child on the track “∞” (infinity). She chants “I was, I am, I am to come” repeatedly and wildly over a percussive backing. The track was considered lewd by record company executives, and resulted in the album being withheld from release for two years by Polydor Records. Upon its release in 1972, the song caused some furor in Greece and was again accused of lewdness and indecency by Greek religious figures and government authorities. (Courtesy by Wikipedia)

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