Odeion’s Director, Eftihia Papageorgiou, first began pursuing her passion for performing as a youth during tours of Europe, Greece, and Turkey with the Panagouda choir, based in Thessaloniki, Greece. Years later and thousands of miles removed, she now is a familiar face as a performer and a music educator in the Chicago metropolitan area. Since 1992, she has been performing, providing individual instruction in piano and voice, directing choirs and musicals, and coaching vocalists and vocal ensembles.
In 1997, Eftihia earned a Bachelor’s degree in both vocal performance and psychology from Northeastern Illinois University (NEIU), where she studied piano under the tutelage of Dr. Elyse Mach, pursued voice lessons with Dr. Phyllis Hurt, and studied vocal pedagogy and opera under Dr. Ronald Combs. As an undergraduate, Eftihia also studied drama and dance.
Upon being awarded a full scholarship for graduate work at NEIU, Eftihia continued her classical piano training and studied vocal pedagogy and opera under Dr. Combs. In 1999, she was awarded a Master’s degree in vocal pedagogy by NEIU.
A Dedicated Educator
Since 1992, Eftihia has been providing private piano and voice lessons to youth and adults in Chicago and all along the North Shore, drawing on her extensive performance experience and educational background to encourage and challenge her students to attain higher levels of musicianship.
From 2002 through 2007, she also held the position of Choral Director at Chicago International Charter School Northtown Academy and its predecessor, Good Counsel High School. As Choral Director, she was instrumental to the production of the musicals Fiddler on the Roof, Oklahoma, Guys and Dolls, and Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, to rave reviews.
Since 2004, Eftihia has been the guest vocal instructor for the Orpheus Hellenic Folklore Society. Eftihia also has more than 10 years of experience teaching music and the Greek language at Greek schools throughout the Chicago metropolitan area.
Numerous students of Eftihia have been inspired to pursue music in higher education and have achieved successful careers in music and music related fields.
Eftihia was a member of and a regular, featured soloist for NEIU’s Chorus. While enrolled at NEIU, she also performed in numerous productions of the works of Italian, American, Russian, and French composers.
As a lyrical soprano, Eftihia has performed lead roles in Puccini’s Gianni Schichi, Cimarosa’s Secret Marriage, and Rorem’s What Men Live By, as well as leading roles in selections from Puccini’s acclaimed Madame Butterfly, Mozart’s legendary Magic Flute, Thomas’s Mignon, Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin, and Menotti’s The Saint of Bleecker Street. Eftihia also has been honored to appear as a guest performer at the Northshore Center for the Performing Arts.
Currently, Eftihia performs as a featured soloist at popular Chicago area venues and as a solo performer, accompanist and member of ensembles at concerts and special events.
In 2006, Eftihia founded Odeion School of Music, where she coordinates and oversees the music education of students enrolled in private lessons for piano, voice, guitar, violin, and other instruments, as well as students enrolled in group classes. Through Odeion, she also offers private lessons on a limited basis and offers open-enrollment group classes such as vocal performance workshops, music theory for adults, and music fundamentals for young children.
The Chicago Hellenic Choir
Combining her commitment to education with her dedication to and love of her Hellenic heritage, Eftihia founded the Chicago Hellenic Choir in 2004, which became a program of Odeion in 2006.