Greek composer and musician Vangelis has died at the age of 79, according to a report from The Guardian. Representatives for the artist said that he died in a hospital in France where he was receiving treatment.
Born Evángelos Odysséas Papathanassíou in Agria, Greece in 1943, he developed an interest in jazz and rock music in his teenage years. He formed his first band, The Forminx, in 1963, he began writing for other artists and composing music for films, including Tu Prosopo tis medousas. In 1968, he formed the progressive rock group Aphrodite’s Child, which released three albums: 1968’s End of the World, 1969’s It’s Five O’Clock, and 1972’s acclaimed 666.
After the group disbanded in 1972, Vangelis moved to London and further pursued composing for film. In 1975, he signed a deal with RCA and began releasing solo material, beginning with 1975’s Heaven and Hell.
In the 1980s, he hit a new commercial peak with his career in film scoring, providing the music for movies such as Chariots of Fire, Blade Runner, Picasso and Antarctica. Because of his soundtrack work for Chariots of Fire, Vangelis was also commissioned to do work for the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney, the 2002 World Cup in Japan and South Korea, and the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens.
His final album, Juno to Jupiter, was released in September 2021 via Decca.