The City Council of Mons in Belgium decided to give the name of Melina Mercouri to a central avenue honoring the Greek politician who launched the institution of Cultural Capitals of Europe in 1983. Mons has been proclaimed the Cultural Capital of Europe for 2015.
Mercouri, a Greek actress and politician, was world-famous for her love for her country and her fight for the return of the Parthenon Marbles to Greece. Mercouri was an actress before getting involved in politics. Two of her most popular films that brought her international recognition are Stella (1955) and Never on Sunday (1960) for which she received the Best Actress Award at the 1960 Cannes Festival.
The Melina Mercouri Foundation, founded after her death by her husband Jules Dassin, is keeping Mercouri’s ideas alive and is continuing her struggle for the return of the Parthenon Marbles.
Mons will celebrate the title of the Cultural Capital of Europe with a big open ceremony on January 24, 2015 followed by numerous exhibitions and cultural events throughout the year.