She was born Kyriaki Papadopoulou (Κυριακή Παπαδοπούλου), in the city of Thessaloniki in northern Greece. Her parents were Greek refugees from Istanbul (former Constantinople). She is the fourth and last child of a large family, which despite its poverty, was rich in love and in artistic vein. The whole family gathered around the turntable and sang, while her father tried to teach children the steps of the waltz and the tango. From the age of four years singing on the radio broadcast in "Pediki Ora (Children's Hour)" and later did ads for shops such as "Melka" in Thessaloniki, earning her first pocket money. She participated in many performances of children's theatre.
At age 15, she gave up her budding career to finish school, but by seventeen, her passion for the theatre is stirring and she joins the artistic group of Mary Laurent, a "mpoulouki" (so called then the singer troupes that traveled Greece end-to-end for performances) and plays small roles. One day, the lead singer fell sick and sought Marinella as a replacement, who was willing to take the singer's place. At that moment, the Greek music world found one of its best representatives. Marinella became the lead singer of the troupe. She later joined the Military Theatre because the remuneration was better. At the same time she started her career as a singer at the "Panorama" centre of Thessaloniki, where Tolis Harmas coined the name "Marinella" for her, inspired by his song.
She released her first song in 1957, "Nitsa, Elenitsa (Little Helen)". Her early career was marked by her collaboration with singer Stelios Kazantzidis. Together they managed to become the greatest duet of Greece, unsurpassed even today. Starting at the night club "Luxembourg" in Thessaloniki where they enjoyed great success, they later moved to Athens, the capital, where they became widely known. They sang the songs of Mikis Theodorakis, Manos Hadjidakis, Vassilis Tsitsanis, Giorgos Mitsakis, Giorgos Zambetas, Apostolos Kaldaras, Theodoros Derveniotis, Stavros Xarchakos, Christos Leontis, whom are considered the best composers of the era.
Marinella married Stelios Kazantzidis on 7 May 1964 and they toured together in Germany and the United States. They divorced in September 1966. Marinella then began a solo career and eventually in 1974 married singer Tolis Voskopoulos. This second marriage also ended in divorce in 1981.
In October 1970, Marinella participated in the V Festival Internacional da Cançao Popular – Parte Internacion (FIC) in Rio de Janeiro, representing Greece with the song "Kyra Giorgena (Wife of George)", finishing 4th among 38 countries. On October 24, 1970, the Billboard wrote "Marinella from Greece, knows audiences in Athens clubs, carries enchantment in her songs and the warmth of the sun in her voice" (by Henry Johnston).
Marinella was the first Greek singer to participate in the International MIDEM Festival of 1973 in Cannes with and three new songs composed by Stavros Xarchakos and in the Eurovision Song Contest of 1974, placing eleventh with the song "Krasi, Thalassa Kai T' Agori Mou (Wine, sea and my boyfriend)".
She also performed in several Greek musicals, both as singer and actress. Her popularity rose in the late 1960s, 1970s and 1980s, with a string of successful albums and live shows. She developed a new standard for shows in the Greek night clubs, introducing costumes, dancing, and special lighting effects.
On 27 April 1998, Marinella performed in the Athens Concert Hall, performing her older hits to great acclaim. Her concert at the small Olympic Stadium of Athens on 1 October 1999 was a great success with more than 25,000 people.
In November 2002, she collaborated with George Dalaras. They performed concerts in Athens and Thessaloniki as well as abroad. The tour was titled "Mazi (Together)" and the released live album from these performances reached platinum status in 2003. On 10 April 2003, The New York Times wrote about Marinella "Her voice was earthy and strong, and she had the presence of an actress as she danced a few teasing steps or brought dignity to longing" (by Jon Pareles).
In March 2004, she released a brand new album with new songs by Nikos Antypas and Lina Nikolakopoulou, entitled "Ammos Itane (It was sand)". In the same year, on 19 August, she performed at the closing ceremony of the 2004 Summer Olympics, along with Dimitra Galani, Haris Alexiou, Yiannis Parios and George Dalaras. In December 2005, she released a new album titled "Tipota Den Ginete Tihea (Nothing is random)", composed by Giorgos Theofanous. The album reached gold status and includes duets with famous Greek singers, such as Antonis Remos and Glykeria. In 2006, two new compilations of Marinella were officially released, the first titled "Sti Skini (On stage)" and containing older live recordings and the second one titled "Ta Logia Ine Peritta – 50 Chronia Tragoudi (Words are pointless – 50 Years of song)", which is a complete eight CDs boxset with Marinella's greatest hits from the beginning of her career until her collaboration with Kostas Hatzis at "Recital". She returned to nightlife, by performing live with Antonis Remos at the Athens Arena in 2006–07 and 2007–08, with Giannis Parios at the Diogenis Studio in the winter season 2008–09, and with Natassa Theodoridou at the Votanikos in 2011–12, in Athens.
Even though Marinella is often considered a singer of Folk songs, her range is quite broad and has included a variety of musical styles including traditional, laika, pop, blues, and jazz. Marinella is characterised as "The Great Lady of Song" in Greece, where she is regarded with great respect. She rarely makes public appearances, and her concerts are few and far between.1964: Kazantzidis & Marinella – Megales Epitihies (Great hits)1965: Chrysos Diskos Kazantzidi & Marinellas (Golden record)1967: Anapolontas (Remembering with Stelios Kazanztidis and Marinella)1969: Stalia - Stalia (Drop by drop)1969: Kazantzidis & Marinella1969: Otan Simani Esperinos (When the evening bells are ringing)1969: Marinella1970: Ena Tragoudi Ein' I Zoi Mou (A song is my life)1970: Kazantzidis & Marinella Sing Greek Songs1971: Marinella – Enas Mythos (A tale)1972: Athanata Rebetika (Immortal Rebetiko songs)1973: Albania1974: Marinella Gia Panta (Marinella forever) – Cyprus release1974: Marinella & Voskopoulos1974: Marinella & Tolis Voskopoulos – Ego Ki' Esy (You and I)1975: Marinella Gia Panta (Marinella forever)1976: Alli Mia Fora (Once again)1977: Marinella & Athenians1978: I Marinella Tou Simera (Marinella of today)1979: S' Agapo (I love you)1980: I Marinella Se Tragoudia Tis Vembo (Marinella in songs of Vembo)1981: Marinella – Gia 'Senane Mporo (For you, I can)1983: Gia 'Sena Ton Agnosto (For you, the unknown)1984: Megales Stigmes (Great times)1985: I Agapi Mas (Our love)1986: Mia Nihta (One night)1987: Marinella & Kostas Hatzis – Synantisi (Meeting)1988: Tolmo (I dare)1989: Eisai Mia Thiella (You're a storm)1990: Lege Mou "S' agapo" (Keep telling me "I love you")1991: Stelios Kazantzidis & Marinella – Ta Tragoudia Tis Amerikis (The songs of America)1992: I Marinella Tragouda Mimi Plessa (Marinella sings Mimis Plessa)1992: I Marinella Tragouda Megales Kyries (Marinella sings great Ladies)1993: To Ximeroma Tou Erota (The dawn of love)1994: I Marinella Tragouda Hatzinasio (Marinella sings George Hadjinasio)1995: Ta Prota Mou Tragoudia (My first songs 1967 – 1970)1996: Ta Prota Mou Tragoudia Nο. 2 (My first songs No. 2 1971 – 1974)1997: Gia Proti Fora (For the first time)1997: Tragoudia Apo Tis 45' Strofes (Songs of 45' rpm vinyl records)2004: Ammos Itane (It was sand)2005: Tipota Den Ginete Tihea (Νothing is random)1972: Mia Vradia Me Tin Marinella (An evening with Marinella)1973: Mia Vradia Me Tin Marinella No. 2 (An evening with Marinella no. 2)1976: Marinella & Kostas Hatzis – Recital1980: Marinella & Kostas Hatzis – To Tam-Tam (The tam-tam)1998: I Marinella Tragouda Ke Thimate (Marinella sings and remembers)1999: Me Varka To Tragoudi (With boat the song)2003: Marinella & George Dalaras – Mazi (Together)2007: Marinella & Antonis Remos – Live1971: Ena Karavi Gemato Tragoudia (A boat full of songs)1991: I Pariziana (The Parisienne)1995: I Prova Tou Nifikou (Fitting of the wedding dress)1995: Gorgones Ke Magkes (Mermaids and tough guys)2000: Ystera Irthan I Melisses (And then, came the bees)1962: Mikis Theodorakis – Greek Serenade1963: Kostas Virvos – Pikres Ke Hares1963: Mikis Theodorakis No. 11963: Holiday in Greece1965: Stelios Kazantzidis Sings1965: The Voice of Stelios Kazantzidis1965: Stelios Kazantzidis No. 21965: Vassilis Tsitsanis – Synnefiasmeni Kyriaki1965: Manos Hadjidakis – Proti Ektelesi1965: Christos Leontis – Katahnia1965: Stelios Kazantzidis No. 31965: Tragoudia Tis Xenitias1965: Dodeka Megales Epitihies Tou Miki Theodoraki1965: Stelios Kazantzidis – Tragoudiste Mazi Mou1965: Retsina Ke Mpouzouki No. 31966: Christos Leontis – Anastasi Oneiron1968: Kazantzides1968: Stelios Kazantzidis – Stigmes1970: V Festival Internacional Da Canção Popular – Rio (Parte Internacional)1971: Christos Leontis – Dodeka Para Pente1971: 12 Syghrona Laika Chromata1972: Stelios Kazantzidis No. 41972: To 13ari Tis Epitichias1973: Njihovi Uspesi1974: Eurovision 19741974: Mikis Theodorakis No. 21974: Kryfa Minymata 1967 - 19741974: Stelios Kazantzidis No. 51975: Tolis Voskopoulos – Ego Ti Eho Ke Ti Tha 'Ho1976: Tolis Voskopoulos – Smyrneika Ke Laika1976: Tolis Voskopoulos – Otan Tragoudo1976: Stelios Kazantzidis No. 6 · Marinella1976: Mikis Theodorakis – Politeia1977: Nasos Panagiotou – Ilie Megale1977: O Kazantzidis Se Dimotika Tragoudia1977: Dimotiki Anthologia No. 31977: Stelios Kazantzidis No. 81978: Stelios Kazantzidis – Monaxia Mou1978: Tolis Voskopoulos – Tragouda Theatrine!1979: Akis Panou – Ase Me Zoi1980: Tolis Voskopoulos – 801981: Giannis Kalatzis – Gia Olous1981: Voskopoulos – Kardia Mou Moni1981: Stelios Kazantzidis 1953-601981: Stelios Kazantzidis 1961-631982: Tolis Voskopoulos – Den Thelo Na Thimame1982: O Stelios Kazantzidis Tragouda Mpampi Mpakali1982: Stelios Kazantzidis – I Megales Epitichies Tou1983: Giannis Spartakos – 50 Chronia Tragoudi1983: 30 Chryses Epitihies Tou Miki Theodoraki No. 21983: 30 Chronia Kaldaras No. 21983: Manos Hadjidakis – 30 Spanies Erminies No. 21983: Ta 14 Chasapisa Tou Hthes Ke Tou Simera1984: Stelios Kazantzidis – Anekdota Tragoudia Stis 33' Strofes1984: Antonis Kalogiannis – Mikra Erotika1984: Kostas Virvos – Tesseris Dekaeties1985: Kazantzidis – Mia Gyneka Efyge (Anekdota Tragoudia Stis 33' Strofes)1985: Kazantzidis Gia Panta No. 1 (Historical recordings 1952 – 1963)1985: Mikis Theodorakis & Manos Hadjidakis - Synavlies 1961 (Live)1985: O Mikis Theodorakis Sto Kentrikon (Live)1985: Ta Laika Tis Nichtas (Athens by night)1985: Antonis Kalogiannis – Ke Pou les Eftichia1985: Gia Ta Pedia1986: Kazantzidis Gia Panta No. 2 (Historical recordings 1952 – 1963)1986: Stelios Kazantzidis – Tora1987: Takis Bougas – Ring1987: Manolis Chiotis – To Deka To Kalo1988: O Giannis Markopoulos Ston Elliniki Kinimatografo1988: Giannis Parios – Pistos1990: Ola mesa1990: Klisis, Proklisis, Prosklisis1990: Stelios Kazantzidis – Anekdota Tragoudia Stis 33' Strofes nο. 31993: San Palio Cinema1995: En Plo (Ypourgio Emporikis Naftilias)1996: Mpampis Mpakalis – Megales Epitichies1996: Lefka Christougenna1996: Stelios Kazantzidis – Tragoudia Apo Tis 45' Strofes1997: Giorgos Zampetas – Tragoudia Apo Tis 45' Strofes1997: Stelios Kazantzidis – Tragoudia Apo Tis 45' Strofes No. 22000: Kazantzidis – Tragoudia Apo Tis 45' Strofes no. 32002: O Stelios Kazantzidis Tragouda Manoli Chioti2002: Mimis Plessas – Iobilaion (Live)2004: Fos (The Official ATHENS 2004 Olympic Game Greek Album) 20042005: Antonis Remos – San Anemos2006: Den Xero Poso S' Agapo – Tribute To Vicky Mosholiou (Live)2006: Stelios Kazantzidis – Ta Kinimatografika2006: 40 Chronia Dimitris Mitropanos2008: Manos Hadjidakis – 100 Tragoudia (Recordings 1955 - 1972)2008: Tha Pio Apopse To Feggari – Tribute To Lefteris Papadopoulos (Live)2008: Mpampis Mpakalis – 40 Megales Epitihies2008: Hroniko Tou Laikou Tragoudiou 19582010: Stelios Kazantzidis – Laiko Tragoudi (National Geographic)2012: Natasa Theodoridou – Apenanti2014: Giorgos Theofanous – Tragoudo To Nisi Mou (Live) – Cyprus release2015: Giorgos Theofanous – Choës – Cyprus release1974: Ta Oraiotera Tragoudia Mou1976: Portraita1978: Ta Prota Mou Tragoudia1980: Portraito1982: 15 Chronia Marinella (2xLP)1987: 14 Apo Ta Oraiotera Tragoudia Mou1988: Marinella For Ever1988: Mia Vradia Me Tin Marinella (1972 - 1973)1988: Gia panta / Ta Erotika (2xLP)1992: Marinella & Antonis Kalogiannis – Synesthimata1993: Chryses Epitihies (2xLP)1993: Stelios Kazantzidis & Marinella – I Megales Erminies1993: Marinella & Tolis Voskopoulos – Oles I Megales Epitihies (2xLP)1994: Ta Erotika (2xLP)1995: Stelios Kazantzidis & Marinella – I Megales Epitihies1996: I Marinella Tragouda Giorgo Zampeta & Aki Panou1996: I Marinella Tragouda Mimi Plessa & Gianni Spano1996: Ta 45aria Tis Marinellas1996: I Megali Kyria Tou Ellinikou Tragoudiou1996: Marinella & Kostas Hatzis – Synantisi Gia Recital1997: Marinella & Kostas Hatzis – Recital Gia Dio (4xCD Boxset)1997: Stelios Kazantzidis & Marinella – I Proti Agapi Sou Eime Ego1997: Marinella & Tolis Voskopoulos – M' Emathes N' Agapo1997: I Foni Ke O Mythos / 30 Chronia Tragoudi (4xCD Boxset)1998: I Marinella Se Aprovleptes Erminies1998: Ta Agapimena (Difono)1999: Ta Tragoudia Mou (Diva)2000: Ta Megala Tragoudia2001: Marinella & Kostas Hatzis – Ta Tragoudia Tou Aiona2001: Marinella / Delta Club (4xCD Boxset)2001: I Megaliteres Epitihies2002: Chrysa Tragoudia (2xCD Boxset)2003: Marinella – Mia Agkalia Tragoudia (4xCD Boxset)2005: Ego (The Very Best of EMI Years) 1957 – 1995 (2xCD)2005: Marinella (The Universal Masters Collection)2006: Kazantzidis & Marinella – Asteria Tou Ellinikou Tragoudiou2006: Kazantzidis & Marinella – I Teleftaies Kines Ichografisis2006: Sti Skini (2xCD)2006: Ta Logia Eine Peritta / 50 Chronia Tragoudi 1956 - 2006(8xCD Boxset)2007: Tragoudia Apo Ton Kinimatografo Ke To Theatro (LP)2008: I Foni Ke O Mythos (4xCD)2009: Ta Tragoudia Mias Zois (5xCD)ΙΙΙ F.I.C. Festival Internacional Da Canção 1968 Rio2004 – Athens 2004 Olympic Games
The following table is a record of all instances of Marinella in films of Greek cinema, from the 1960 by 1966 with Stelios Kazantzidis and from 1967 by 1970 itself.Video of Marinella singing the song "Kyra Giorgena" at the TV show "Nana Mouskouri with the Athenians" on BBC, in 1971 on YouTubeVideo clip of the song "Krasi, thalassa ke t' agori mu" (Eurovision '74) 1974 on YouTubeVideo clip of the song "Na pezi to tranzistor" (Αlbum "I Marinella tou simera") 1978 on YouTubeVideo clip of the song "Vasanismeni Kyriaki" (Αlbum "Gia proti fora") 1997 on YouTubeMarinella singing the song "Asteri sto parathyro (Star in the window)" (Film "GYMNI STO DROMO") in 1969 on YouTube