Spring 1987 the Greek singer Stavros Logaridis, an old friend, sued Vangelis. Stavros had the idea Vangelis copied the theme of the track of the Greek televisionshow "City of Violets" (1975) for the theme of Chariots of Fire (1981). For his defence, Vangelis set up a synthesizer in court and played a theme with the jurors as audience. The jurors were convinced of his innocence, Vangelis was cleared of all accusations and he recieved an indemnification of 2 milion pounds. The friendship of Stavros and Vangelis came to a terrible end.
Two months after this event, Vangelis moved to Athens. The old girlsschool at Hampden Gurney street was demolished and was replaced by the new building you can see nowadays.
Back in his country of birth, Greece,Vangelis started a new life. First he found himself a new place to work, at the Sound Studios in the old town of Athens. He signed to a new label, Arista, where he released his album "Direct". (1988)
Vangelis at work at the Sound Studios in Athens, Greece
Rotterdam, the famous Dutch harbour, was the place for a new television appearance. In the evening of July 18 1991, he gave his "Event of Exellence" concert on the water of the river Maas, this event was organised by the Dutch Ministery of economic affairs.
This event was the 5th birthday of a co-operation between several highscools and universities throughout the European Community. This co-operation was called Eureka. During the concert the buildings you can see below were used as screens for laserlights. It was broadcasted live on television by Veronica .Roman Polanski reportedly attended the concert backstage. A choir existed of 400 men and women were singing the vocals of e.g. Hymne and Mask. This concert was released illegally on DVD, Video CD and audio CD's and sold on the internet. A Dutch radioreporter tried to get Vangelis' words after the concert. Backstage the reporter asked if he was satisfied with the result. Many thanks to Christiaan Tinga!
"Yes, I am. I'm very tired."
"Was it what you expected?"
"It was perfect. Thank you very much, bye!"
At this time, Vangelis made another soundtrack. For Roman Polanski's Bitter Moon he made the score. Polanski's wife, Emanuelle Seigner, plays a leading role. You can hear Polanski walk and ask for a sandwich and Seigner say "c'est beau" on the 1990 CD The City. Bitter Moon's soundtrack has never been released, just the main theme that you can find on the Reprise CD. Polanski, a long time friend of Vangelis, said in an interview about the movie that he "wanted to give a new vision I want to confront with." In Poland the name of the movie is "Gorzkie Gody". In ex-Yugoslavia it's name is "Gorkie Mesec."
Trailer of "Bitter Moon"
Another 1992 release is the music for the worldwide known "1492: Conquest of Paradise" movie, directed by sir Ridley Scott, who also made Blade Runner. With a massive budget of $47.000.000, the movie tells the story of Columbus played by Gerard Depardieu, in his search for the New World. The movie came out exactly 500 years after the real Columbus sailed to America in 1492. Ridley Scott was born in the north of England, he has lived all over Europe, e.g. in Germany. After attending art school, Scott went to work for the BBC. He started as a set dresser and enrolled in their production program. Then he started directing live television shows. Conquest of Paradise had it's premiere October 9th 1992.
The music was nominated for a Golden Globe. The film failed to be a huge success, but with the help of the popularity of the music, the film gained some new attention by the public three years after it's initial release. The German boxer Henry Maske used the main title song of the movie as guidance to the boxing ring in 1995. This caused an enormous hype in Europe, the music got the nr. 1 positions in Germany, Austria, the Netherlands, Portugal, France, Belgium, Italy, Spain, the U.K. and Canada and other countries' charts. In Februari 1995 an official award ceremony took place in Athens, as the album sold multi-platinum.
The film got worldwide attention, not just because of the music.
After Rome, he moved again to Paris, to set up another studio, the famous "Epsylon". This studio, in the centre of Paris, was made of glass. The most famous work what was recorded here is the soundtrack for "1492: Conquest of Paradise". The studio is to be seen in a videoclip of the song and in the French television interview "Musique au Couer". Returning back to Paris, Vangelis set up another studio in Neuilly-sur-Seine, in the outskirts of the city. He called it Ypsilon. This building was mainly made of glass. In 1992 he said in an interview, after the reporter asked...
“Why glass, is very easy. I would like to feel the change of the days and the seasons. I hate being in studios wich are underground or are, between brackets, extremely well soundproof. All that is tiring. You are cut off completely from nature, from everything. Here I can feel when the sun is up, when the sun is down, I can see the birds, the trees and that is fantastic!”
This interview was broadcasted by French television on TV 5 in 1992. A lot of music here, which was all improvised. The building still exists but Vangelis left it in 1993 and is abandoned since.
In 1995 "Foros Timis Ston Greko", which means "A Tribute To El Greco", was in the first place a small initiative Vangelis contributed to. To raise the funds of the National Gallery for Culture in Athens in Greece, a new release was sold at the museum. El Greco is the name of the Cretan painter Dimitros who moved to Spain where he became known as The Greek or El Greco (1541- 1614) Initially, it was pressed in a small amount of 3000 copies for sale. The money was used to buy the painting "The Saint" by Cretan painter El Greco. There are three editions of this release: a red box (1998) with informationsheets, a book with lots of pictures of El Greco's paintings and an autographed CD of Vangelis in digipack. It is a real adventure to track down this little treasure. The other version is a blue box (1995) containing one sheet, the same book with paintings by El Greco as in the red box and the autographed CD. And in 2014 a limited edition boxset with the DVD, a book about the painter, a CD and an LP came out on the Cobalt label.
One month after this release, the album "Voices" on the East West Label came out. Together with the world famous vocalists Stina Nordenstam, Paul Young and Caroline Lavelle he made this album witch was again released worldwide. Caroline Lavelle is known for her work together with Massive Attack, Peter Gabriel, Radiohead, Loreena McKennitt and The Chieftains.
1995 Again, was Vangelis was accused for plagiarism, this time for his Conquest of Paradise record. Two Belgian mucisians sued Vangelis, but without success. And again, Vangelis was cleared for all the accuasations.
In 1996 Vangelis scored another movie, this time directed by Greek director Iannis Smaragdis. "Kavafis" tells the story of the Greek poet Konstandínos Petrou Kavafis (1863-1933), well known for his poems "Il Polis" ("The City") and "Ithaca", The homosexual character of the Greek poet has a prominent role in the feature film. The film shows his struggle with his unconcealed love for young men, this lovetheme shows up in some of his poems.
The movie has seen daylight all over the world and was warmly welcomed by the public. Nevertheless and sadly, the movie has been only released in Greece. Troughout the world Kavafis has been participated at more than twenty filmfestivals and won six times, for example "Best Feature Film and Direction" and "Best Cinematopgraphy" at the Greek national film festival of 1997. Vangelis won two awards for his music at the international filmfestivals in Valencia (Spain) and Flanders (Belgium).
One of the outstriking ideas in this film is the fact that the main person doesn't speak. That gave the movie some negative reactions. The music is never released officially, only the main titles are included on the 2003 compilation album "Oddysey The Collection". In Athens 1996 the annual Night of Poetry in Greece took place. The Greek actor Antonis Theodorakopoulos recited a poem of Kavafis on music of Vangelis, played live.
Twelve hours of unheard music, never released anywhere else than on a hard-to-find boxset made for Greek students of medical neurosurgery. In 2011 Vangelis-collector Don Fennimore found in an Greek bookstore this amazing treasure. On the videotapes you can see a human body which is cut open for a neurosurgery and a voice-over tells what we see and gives some inside information in Greek. The voice of initiator Dr. Stegios Tegos is accompanied by mostly calm and relaxing music, with a repetative character. This boxset was released in 1998 and is now an expensive treasure for Vangelis-collectors.
In 1998 as well, the fourth and last album by Jon Anderson and Vangelis came out. Actually it is a re-release of the 1991 album Page of Life. But this time, there were quite some differences. For the Russian market, this album was released also on the pirate label Grammy.
1996 is also the year for a brandnew album: "Oceanic". A calm and relaxing album, according to many people this album is to be categorised as 'new age'. The music of this album was used for many televisionads, e.g. for a famous brand of washing machines. The ads were directed by Italian director Dario Piana. In 2007 the spot won Gold at the Cannes LionAwards and Top Award at the New York Advertising Festival. They used real clothes in water tanks for the spot, (commercial 2) so no computer generated images were made. Click here to watch them !
Change We Must
Page of Life
Anyone Can Light A Candle
Page Of Life
Garden of Senses
Is It Love
Garden of Senses
Anyone Can Light A Candle
Be A Good Friend Of Mine
Shine For Me
Shine For Me
Journey To Ixtlan
In the last year of the 20th century, Vangelis released the Reprise CD, a compilation CD with earlier recorded tracks. This CD has two older but never released tracks on it: The Theme from Bittermoon, a slightly different mix of the opening theme of the film. Psalmus Ode is a re-recording of the theme for the film "The Plague".
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