YANNI is a legendary composer and live performer who has brought hundreds of millions of fans and fellow world citizens together via his concerts, with countless more experiencing the magic of his music through television broadcasts. One of public television’s all-time top fundraisers, YANNI recently played two sold-out concerts at the historic 16th-century Castillo San Felipe Del Morro in San Juan, Puerto Rico. The dates were the first-ever performances at this recognized UNESCO Heritage Site, and the shows were filmed in high-definition and recorded in Dolby Digital 5.1 surround sound. YANNI: Live at El Morro, Puerto Rico makes its nationwide public television debut on March 3, 2012, marking the composer’s tenth collaboration with PBS.
YANNI: Live at El Morro, Puerto Rico is set for CD and DVD release by Sony Music on April 17, also the kick-off date for YANNI’s world tour, which begins in North America and encompasses legs in South America and China. The new title spotlights YANNI and his orchestra performing audience favorites including “Truth of Touch,” “Voyage” and “Vertigo” from Yanni’s latest studio album, Truth of Touch (2011). Also featured is a new version of Yanni’s signature song “Nightingale,” and other classics that have not been recorded in decades, including “The End of August,” “The Rain Must Fall,” “Felitsa,” “Ode To Humanity,” plus two encores: “Niki Nana” and “One Man’s Dream.”
Yanni’s performances at Castillo San Felipe Del Morro represent a 20-year dream come true for the artist. The shows also connect the famed Puerto Rican landmark with other iconic sites that have played host to Yanni’s spectacular concerts including the Acropolis in Greece, the Taj Mahal in India, and the Forbidden City in China (he was the first western performer to play at the latter two).
Truth of Touch, released in 2011, returned YANNI to the contemporary instrumental form that made him an international superstar. The album—his 19th overall and 16th studio release—is YANNI’s first collection of primarily instrumental music since 2003. It was recorded with producer-songwriter Ric Wake, YANNI’s key collaborator on his last two albums, Yanni Voices and the Spanish-language Yanni Voces. The project grew organically out of a six-month break from touring and recording.
Born Yanni Chryssomallis in southern Greece, YANNI came to the U.S. to attend the University of Minnesota, which gave him an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters in 2005. He studied psychology, but ultimately dedicated himself to music. At school, he played with the group Chameleon before moving to Los Angeles, where he released his first album, Optimystique, in 1980.
YANNI delved into instrumental composing, and had his first platinum album with Reflections of Passion in 1990. Two years later, Dare To Dream netted his first GRAMMY nomination; its follow up, In My Time, earned another nod. YANNI’s major breakthrough came with 1993’s Yanni Live at the Acropolis, an album/video/PBS project seen by half a billion people in 65 countries. It marked the beginning of YANNI’s long association with PBS, and built a truly global audience for his music. To date, YANNI has sold more than 35 million albums globally, and his 2003 autobiography, Yanni In Words, made the New York Times bestseller list. His music is also a staple as a soundtrack for television, especially major sporting events, including the Olympic Games since 1988.
Over the past several years, YANNI’s ongoing studio explorations have resulted in more than 300 songs. He also extensively toured, performing sold-out concerts in Eastern Europe, the Middle East, and Asia—where the Chinese government invited YANNI to adopt a panda, an honor usually reserved for countries rather than individuals. He named her “Santorini,” which means “peace” in Greek, and is also the title of one of his best-known compositions.
Even as the road beckons once again, YANNI’s heart also remains in studio with all the music he’s created of late. “I’ve been having fun,” he says. “What I’ve learned is when a song hits you, when something moves you to write, it’s an emotion. All of life comes together, and you have to follow it. I want to take my audiences on a journey. They don’t know what’s coming next, but I promise it will be a pleasant surprise.”
Yanni is available for corporate events, private shows, milestone celebrations (birthday, anniversary), fundraisers, festivals, and more.