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Thursday, November 27, 2014

20 Question Time... Global Greek Style: Conversation with Thaao Penghlis - Hollywood actor, writer and traveller!

His favourite Greek word is 'Matia mou'  
and the person who brings the Parthenon Marbles back to Greece 
would be his nomination for a Nobel Prize...

20 Question Time... Global Greek Style 
with one of our wonderfully accomplished and talented - and good looking - Global Greek Ambassadors in the World, 
Hollywood actor, writer, traveller

Thaao Penghlis
Emmy nominated star of so many of our favourite TV series,
Mission Impossible, Days of our Lives, 
Santa Barbara and General Hospital

20 Question Time... Global Greek Style

Hellenism is…

The Classical age of Greece and the immortal work contributed to all aspects of life that escaped all human limits.

Did your Hellenism help get you where you are? How?

At first it was a hindrance but because it lay at my core, perseverance won out and surfaced at the right time and found its true path.

Being Greek: Best Part…


Being Greek: Worst part…


Greeks who inspire(d) you…

Melina Mercouri 
the Greeks who freed us from the bloody Ottomans.

Greeks you like...

Those who fight corruption and Greed.

Greeks you don’t like…

The ones with deep pockets 
cab drivers.

Your favourite Greek word…

Matia mou.

Your favourite Greek spot in the world…

Santorini and the Acropolis.

Your favourite Greek song…

Thalasaki mou.

Your favourite Greek meal… Who cooked it?


Your favourite Greek book…

Homer’s Odyssey.

Your happiest Greek memory …

Having succeeded in Hollywood and my father with tears in his eyes calling me “His Levendi.”

Your saddest Greek memory…

My parents dying in the same week.

Global Greeks at the Nobels  - Who would you nominate? Why?

The one who brings back the Parthenon Marbles.

You meet the Prime Minister of Greece on the beach this summer… What would you tell him?

Get rid of corruption 
listen to the cries of the poor.

You are the Prime Minister of Greece …for a week!
What three things would you do first?

Start bringing back the tourists, by re-creating a huge ad campaign for Greece as the great hot spot of the world thereby helping the job market.

Expose those Greeks with deep pockets and have them use the money to feed the poor and support low rent housing.

Have the rich pay the taxes they have evaded for years with big fines and spread education.

You’re one of our several million Global Greeks who are Greece’s Ambassadors in the World. Public Diplomacy at its best!  Have you done something to help Greece today?

My book  ‘PLACES’ comes out this summer where I argue about the Parthenon Marbles and their rightful place and using my platform as an actor, to always elaborate the influence of my Greek heritage.

Who would you include in a ‘Global Greeks for Greece’ Dream Team?

The memory of Melina Mercouri and what she stood for. 
Elisabeth Fotiadou (Greek Consul in Los Angeles) 
members of the rebellious youth that want to bring Greece into the 21st Century.

And now for the best part… 
Create a picture of YOUR Greece … what would you put in it?
All the looted art that was stolen by the Germans, French and the English since the 19thC and house them in the new Archaeological Museum in Athens.

Get rid of those illegal immigrants who are changing the face of Greece and bringing their illegal forms of life back where they found them.

Clean up the drugs on the streets that have created so many crimes I never experienced in my youth.

Open schools for orphans to educate and nourish what is not at their disposal.


Thank you Thaao - It has been a real pleasure to talk to you! Good luck with the book sales!
Ευχαριστούμε πολύ!

 More about Thaao 
We first spotted Thaao as the dark, good-looking and very flexible member of the newly remade Mission Impossible team, the debonair Nicholas Black who sported something rather unusual for Hollywood, a light Australian accent!

Not surprising really, since Thaao was born to Greek immigrant parents and raised in one of the furthest corners of our Global Greek World, Sydney, Australia. Thaao spent his early days as a young career diplomat, working with the immigration service to help Greek immigrants who were seeking Australian citizenship. He trained for three years to become involved in the Diplomatic Corps, but gradually realized that his whole life centered around Greek happenings, so he took a leave of absence to find his own identity and went to work for the UN in New York. There he met another Global Greek, teacher and director Milton Katselas who inspired him to pursue an acting career. Thaao quit his job at the UN, worked as an apprentice art dealer during the day and studied acting at night and when Milton  moved to Los Angeles to set up his studio and school at the Beverly Hills Playhouse, Thaao went too, appearing in many productions in Los Angeles and in New York and built up an impressive filmography over the coming years. 

The world got to know him in many TV roles - among the most notable as Nicholas Black in Mission Impossible, as Victor Cassadine on General Hospital and Count Anthony DiMera on Days Of Our Lives  -  roles which kept him on the popularity charts for many years. In 2014, his many fans got the chance to see Victor Cassadine again on General Hospital after 30 years, when he was finally called back by ABC.

In addition to his busy acting career, Thaao continues to be the traveller and adventurer he has always been. He has taken many tours through his ancestral Greece - the photo above is from a recent trip to the Meteora monastery -  and to one of his favourite spots - Mt. Sinai in Egypt. He has investigated some of the world’s most sacred sites, travelled through the jungles of the Amazon, and throughout the Middle East.  His book,
‘Places, Journeys of My Days, My Lives.’ published in July this year, recalls some of those perilous journeys for us.

One of his recent starring roles was in the film ‘TheGreen Story,’  about the life and  success story of another of our Global Greeks, Greek American Van Vlahakis and his mission to transform not only HIS life but also the lives of those around him, as the owner and CEO of Earth Friendly Products. He also continues to star in many stage and television shows as well as performing his one-man show called ‘Journeys' a great backdrop for his book.

Thaao has made his permanent home in the hills of Los Angeles, California. Like many of our Global Greeks, Thaao is equally at home in Australia, Greece or the USA and comfortable anywhere life takes him - a real citizen of the world.

Update 1 December 2014:
Delighted to announce that Thaao has generously offered us a couple of copies of his latest book 'Places: The Journey of My Days, My Lives' as prizes! To qualify for one of the copies which will be drawn on New Year's Eve, please leave a comment on this 20 Question Time...Global Greek Style Conversation with Thaao post. 

Oh and don't forget to 'like' Places: The Journey of My Days, My Lives by Thaao Penghlis and Global Greek World on Facebook too!

Ευχαριστούμε Πολύ, Thaao! 

At Global Greek World, We ♥ Greece...and it shows! 
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