Opéra sauvage

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Opéra sauvage
File:Opera Sauvage.jpg
Studio album by Vangelis
Released 1979
Recorded 1978–1979, Nemo Studios, London
Genre Electronica
Length 43:06
Label Polydor
Producer Vangelis
Vangelis chronology
Opéra sauvage
See You Later
(1980)See You Later1980
Singles from Opéra sauvage
  1. "Hymne"
    Released: 1979
  2. "L'Enfant"
    Released: 1979
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4.5/5 stars link

Opéra sauvage is a 1979 album by Greek composer and artist Vangelis, of the score for the nature documentary by the same title by French filmmaker Frédéric Rossif. The album sleeve design is by Vangelis himself.

Vangelis produced this album during his electro-acoustic period, which was one of the most productive in his musical career. Opéra Sauvage is more akin to his classic sound than his earlier nature scores for the same director, such as L'Apocalypse des animaux and La Fête sauvage. A later collaboration with Rossif in the style of Opéra sauvage was Sauvage et Beau.

The album became #42 in the Billboard top 200, and stayed in the charts for 39 weeks.

Track listing

No. Title Length
1. "Hymne"   2:40
2. "Rêve"   12:26
3. "L'Enfant"   4:57
4. "Mouettes"   2:28
5. "Chromatique"   3:25
6. "Irlande"   4:43
7. "Flamants roses"   11:50

"Hymne", "L'Enfant", "Mouettes" and "Irlande" build on fairly simple themes that are developed instrumentally. "Rêve" is, indeed, as the title suggests, a dreamy calm piece. "Chromatique" has a chromatic instrumental line with chords on an acoustic guitar. "Flamants roses", finally, consists of several parts, from slow to upbeat, and finishing off with a bluesy finale; Jon Anderson features prominently on harp.

Vangelis plays several synthesizers, piano, electric piano (featured extensively on "Rêve"), drums, percussion, xylophone, and acoustic guitar ("Chromatique"). Jon Anderson is credited with playing harp on "Flamants roses".

The music was recorded at Vangelis' Nemo Studios in London, U.K, in 1978 and 1979, with engineering by Keith Spencer-Allen, assisted by Marlis Duncklau and Raphael Preston.

Other appearances

"L'Enfant" was included in the soundtrack of the film The Year of Living Dangerously by Peter Weir.

"Hymne" was the tune of Barilla pasta television commercials aired in Italy throughout the 1980s.[citation needed] In the US, it was the tune for Ernest & Julio Gallo wine commercials.[citation needed]

A documentary on the Chariots of Fire special-edition DVD-video relates that director Hugh Hudson intended to use the 7/4 piece "L'Enfant", which he was particularly fond of, as the opening titles over the first scene on the beach, until Vangelis talked him into letting him compose the iconic theme. The director then had "L'Enfant" being played in the film by a brass band as source music.[1] A re-recorded version of "Hymne" was used as the score cue for Eric Liddell's first race in the Scottish highlands.


  1. Trivia About Vangelis at ElseW.com