18 thoughts on “Vangelis Explains The Origin Of The Theme To Chariots Of Fire

  1. They’re called zyklons or something along those lines. They are custom made for him, based on an earlier commercial device.

    In so many words, they are super advanced interactive arpeggiators, that require a high level of virtuosity to manage…

    His album Direct was the first one to use this kind of thing…

    Sorry, I don’t have time now to refine this post 🙂

  2. onar3d: You are mistaken. You’re thinking of the Zyklus MIDI Performance system, but they don’t look like that. It’s also worth mentioning Vangelis has said on several occasions that he would rather play a piece himself rather than use a sequencer, arpeggiator or similar device, which really shouldn’t come as a surprise because he is a classically-trained pianist.

    tyler: A user on the Analogue Heaven mailing list answered this very question earlier today, and he provided some pretty compelling evidence that they are preset boxes that Vangelis had custom-made for him.

      1. AnalOG: My mistake… and that only leads me to respect Vangelis even more. It’s clear from his MIDI setup that when he performs live he handles a lot of duties himself that would normally be handled by roadies, and that he is composing music of an incredible caliber without any formal training is even more impressive. The man is a rare gift to the music industry, that’s for sure.

  3. Its his custom MIDI setup, made by YES Audio. On this setup are connected various synth racks and 18 pedals. You can see demo of this setup in the upcomming DVD documentary “Vangelis and the Journey To Ithaka”.

  4. Massive respect for Vangelis. I watched Chariots of Fire when it first came out… that was back in the 1981 or 82. I was 7 around that time and remember humming that theme everywhere as a kid. It still amazes me just how deeply embedded music like this becomes in someone’s psyche, eventually becoming part of your life’s soundtrack.

  5. Too bad none of the BBC video content will play back on my “mobile device”. I guess they don’t have iPhones or iPads at the Beeb. LOL

  6. I find the Chariots of Fire music to be dull and really it doesn’t touch me in any way. A piece by him is ‘Ask the Mountains’ with Stina Nordenstam. That to me shows Vangelis at his best .

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