Oscar-Winning Blade Runner Composer Gone at 79

The composer vangelis, with a salt and pepper beard and long dark hair

Musician and composer Vangelis, seen right here in 1992 on the French Tradition Ministry, has died.
Photograph, Georges Bendrihem/AFP ,Getty Photographs,

Say the phrase “science fiction” and instantly a picture types in your thoughts, Possibly it is of area. Possibly it is high-tech equipment. Possibly it is some odd-looking creature. No matter it’sthat picture possible has a sound as nicely, and for many people, that sound was written by a composer named Vangelis, who handed away this week on the age of 79.

Vangelis, actual identify Evángelos Odysséas Papathanassíou, was a musician and composer who crafted the unforgettable, ethereal, and completely magical synth music for Ridley Scott’s 1982 movie Blade Runner, That sound, lovely and soothing however with an digital edge, got here to outline science fiction for a lot of followers to at the present time. In contrast to the extra wave-y, string-y, bizarre music one may affiliate with sci-fi of the Fifties, or the bombastic sounds composers like John Williams made within the Nineteen Seventies, Vangelis’ Blade Runner rating cut up the distinction. There’s that distinct, sci-fi, metallic really feel to it but in addition, it may very well be as comfortable as a lullaby or as brash as a horn part. It actually captured the essence of the dystopian tales that sprung from the minds of Philip Okay Dick, Ridley Scott, and others.

And whereas it is his rating for Blade Runner that sci-fi followers maintain most expensive, that is solely his second most well-known work. A 12 months earlier, Vangelis received the Oscar for Greatest Unique Rating for his work on Chariots of Hearth, the sports activities drama that additionally received Greatest Image. Should you aren’t already buzzing it simply on the mere point out of it, you’ll be able to hear right here, On the time, the rating wasn’t only a crucial success, it was a business success too, which is a uncommon feat for a movie rating even at the moment. It stays a really well-known and referenced piece of music—and the most effective and most recognizable scores ever.

Then, to suppose, these scores make up simply two years of labor from Vangelis’ close to 80-year life. He grew up in Greece, discovered to play music, joined a number of bands, traveled the world, and ultimately grew to become one of many world’s foremost and in-demand composers, working not simply in movie, however for the stage as nicely. It was an unimaginable life that ended, based on Selectionin a French hospital whereas being handled for covid-19—a tragic finish to a story that may reside endlessly in our hearts, minds, and ears.


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