Undoubtedly one of the most prolific composers of our time, Vangelis Papathanasiou is the pioneer of electronic music and the mind behind some of the most successful scores in motion picture history.
Born in Volos, Vangelis took on music from an early age and without any formal training quickly became one of the most recognizable figures of Greek music during the 60s. Later on, while relocating to Paris and London, Vangelis explored new grounds with electronic music. With the simultaneous use of 6 keyboards, Vangelis was able to broaden his musical idea, tune it with the keyboards and record it all at the same time. His distinguished musical style became an instant success, drawing the attention of renowned filmmakers.
In 1982 Vangelis won the Academy Award for Best Original Score for his work in ”Chariots of Fire”. The musical album peaked the charts of several countries, becoming one of the highest selling albums and introducing Hollywood to a new style of music. He collaborated with Ridley Scott in ”Blade Runner” and again in ”1942: Conquest of Paradise” earning Golden Globe nominations for both. Other soundtracks include Costa Gavras’s Palme d’Or winning ”Missing”, Roger Donaldson’s ”The Bounty” and Oliver Stone’s ”Alexander”.
It is not just Vangelis’s music that distinguishes him from other composers but his approach to music. He supports that music ought to drive the composer in order to have an honest and true result. To achieve this, the composer must work as a channel through which the music passes and changes from its chaotic form to its grounded form. If the composer drives the music, the result will be a product of business and not music.
Since the past decade, Vangelis has been composing music based on mathematical coordinates for NASA’s mission in space, the most recent being the Rosetta mission. He also composed music for the 2000 and 2004 Olympic games respectively.
For his promotion of Hellenism throughout the word, Vangelis Papathanasiou has received numerous accolades and awards, with his music being his biggest honor.
- Freddy279. Vangelis Papathanasiou Biography (complete). Youtube. 12 Sep. 2012. 22 Nov. 2015.
- ”Vangelis”. IMDb, n.d. Web. 22 Nov. 2015.