Arts & Entertainment

Oscar-winning composer Vangelis dies

Paris, May 19 (EFE).- Greek musician and composer Vangelis, best known as the creator of the Oscar-winning score for the 1981 film “Chariots of Fire,” died at a Paris hospital, media outlets reported Thursday. He was 79.

The multi-instrumentalist passed away on Tuesday, his representatives said.

Born Evangelos Odysseas Papathanassiou, he entered the Athens Music School at the age of 6 and by 20, he had formed his first band, Forminx, which played Greek pop favorites and covers of Beatles songs.

He soon began writing original music and in 1968, having relocated to Paris, Vangelis joined with three other Greek expats to form Aphrodite’s Child, a progressive-rock outfit whose single “Rain and Tear” topped the charts in several European countries.

After the group broke up, Vangelis embarked on a solo career and his work attracted the attention of the producers of “Chariots of Fire,” who commissioned the Greek to score the film about British athletes competing in the 1924 Olympics.

The soundtrack album, featuring Vangelis on synthesizer, piano, and percussion, reached No. 1 on the Billboard chart in the United States.

Vangelis went on to score films such as “Blade Runner” (1982), “1492: The Conquest of Paradise” (1992), “Bitter Moon” (1992), and “Alexander” (2004). EFE


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