Oscar-Winning Music Composer Vangelis Died At The Age Of 79

Legendary Greek music composer and musician Vangelis who worked on Oscar-winning scores for films like Chariots of Fire and Blade Runner died earlies this week at 79.

In a statement confirmed by Vangelis’ Private office on his Elsewhere fan page, the news of his death on Tuesday night was announced. The news was then confirmed by The Athens News Agency, but no official cause of death has yet been provided.

The Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias wrote in a tweet translated as reading, “Vangelis Papathanassiou was a great Greek composer who excelled at a global level. We say goodbye with a big ‘thank you’ for what he offered to Music, Culture, and Greece.”

As translated by Rolling Stone, The Prime Minister of Greece Kyriajos Mitsotakis tweeted his tribute sharing, “Vangelis Papathanassiou is no longer with us. For the whole world, this sad news demonstrates that the world music scene has lost the international ‘Vangelis,’ the protagonist of electronic sound, of the Oscars, of Mythology and the hits. For us Greeks, who know his second name was Odysseus, it means that he’s begun his long trip to the Chariots of Fire. From there, he’ll always send us his notes.”

Starting his journey in music early, he learned piano at a very young age, but despite being enrolled in an Athens music school, he never formally learned how to read or write music.

As reported in a roundup of his career in a tribute by BBC, he first tasted fame in the late 1960s Vangelis started off as the keyboardist for Aphrodite’s Child with singer Demis Roussos.

His groundbreaking work for the iconic soundtracks for Chariots of Fire and Bladerunner are among his most iconic works and will live on forever.

He then went on to become a groundbreaking electronic solo artist beyond his work in films as well and went on to enjoy chart success with Yes frontman Jon Anderson under the name Jon and Vangelis.

An inspiration to many in the world of electronic music, the heartfelt tributes have been pouring in for the legend. From Jean Michel Jarre to Armin Van Buuren, the stories of inspiration, collaboration and more are a testament to how his work helped shape the soundscape of an entire era.

H/T – Rolling Stone

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