|Birth name||Vitaly Vladasovich Grachev|
|Also known as|
|Born||19 February 1979|
Daugavpils, Latvian SSR
Vitaly Vladasovich Grachev (Russian: Виталий Владасович Грачёв; Ukrainian: Віталій Владасовіч Грачов, romanized: Vitali Vladasovich Hrachov; born 19 February 1979), known professionally as Vitas (Russian: Витас, IPA: [ˈvʲitəs]), is a Ukrainian-Russian singer, songwriter and actor. Vitas is known for his unique falsetto and his eclectic musical style, which incorporates elements of operatic pop, techno, dance, classical, jazz, and folk.
Having achieved prominence through Russian television in the early 2000s, Vitas crossed into Asian markets in 2005. Much of his recognition outside Russia and Asia came in the 2010s, when songs such as "Opera #2" and "The 7th Element" (both from his 2001 debut album Philosophy of Miracle) and "Smile!" (from his 2002 album of the same name) achieved viral success; the unusual music videos for "Opera #2" and "The 7th Element" have been cited as the most prominent examples of this.
Vitas has performed with entertainment labels such as Universal Music Group, and has toured extensively in several countries. He designs his own stage costumes, and employs a backing band named DIVA during live performances.
Vitaly Vladasovich Grachev was born in Daugavpils, which was then in the Latvian SSR, on 19 February 1979. He soon moved with his parents to Ukraine, where he was raised in Odessa. He is the son of Lilia Mihailovna Gracheva, who was Russian, and Vladas Arkadevich Grachev. His paternal grandfather, Arkadiy Davidovich Marantzman, was Ashkenazi Jewish while his paternal grandmother was of Latvian descent. He showed an interest in music from an early age; his grandfather taught him to play the accordion at the age of 5 and wrote his first song, "Rain in Tbilisi", when he was 6. He later said that he had composed at least 1,000 songs by the age of 12. He attended an art school in Odessa from the age of seven, and appeared in various theatrical productions as a teenager. His dean at the art school in Odessa reportedly hailed him as "a gift from God".
Vitas came to public attention in Russia in December 2000 with the song "Opera #2", which was notable for his surprisingly high-pitched and energetic vocals. In the music video, he portrays an eccentric lonely man with fish gills who lives in a bathtub with jars of fish and plays the accordion naked. In February 2001, he held his first concert, "Opera #...", at the "Russia" Concert Hall in Moscow, and presented his first concert tour, Philosophy of Miracle, which ended in early 2003.
Vitas received an invitation from Lucio Dalla, the composer who created "Caruso", to perform this song together with the author at the "San Remo in Moscow" concert in the State Kremlin Palace in 2003. Mr. Dalla then invited Vitas to come to Rome to take part in the rehearsals of "Toska", a modern version of Puccini's opera.
In dedication to his mother who died in 2001, Vitas released two albums, "The Songs of My Mother" and "Mama". "The Songs of My Mother" included classic Russian songs which are sometimes considered to be the "gold reserves" of Russian pop-music. In November 2003, Vitas presented his second tour program, "The Songs of My Mother" in the Russia Concert Hall in Moscow. Compared to the flamboyant nature of his previous "Philosophy of Miracle" tour, "The Songs of My Mother" was more conservative, drawing on classic Russian songs. From 2004 to 2006, Vitas' management, the "Pudovkin" Production Center continued "The Songs of My Mother" tour in Russia and the United States, Germany, Kazakhstan, Israel and the Baltic states.
In addition to his singing career, Vitas also starred in a murder mystery television series called "Сволочь ненаглядная" ("Beloved Scoundrel"), in which he played a pop singer with an unusually high voice. He also starred in a comedy called Crazy Day.
In June 2006, Vitas was invited by China Central Television to take part in a grand event entitled "The Year of Russia in China" in Beijing. Vitas performed two songs, "The Star" and "Opera #2" during the event, marking the beginning of his popularity in China.
Vitas' "Return Home" tour, beginning in 2006, had a conservative atmosphere similar to the "Songs of My Mother" tour. The concert performed in Saint Petersburg on 4 March 2007 was later released on DVD on Vitas' website, as well as officially in some countries, albeit with many songs removed. The full concert in Moscow was later released on DVD.
In October 2007, Vitas was signed with now-defunct American label Gemini Sun Records. Gemini Sun released the Audio Visual Connect Series Vitas compilation CD + DVD set featuring eight music videos with the corresponding songs also on audio CD, in addition to a bonus audio track. In 2008, Vitas also released "Light of A New Day", a 40-minute track of non-lyrical vocalization and instrumentation. The song is available as a free download on his website.
The "Sleepless Night" tour included concerts in China and more elaborate presentations than the more conservative "Return Home" program. Vitas performed his "Return Home" concert in Bucharest, Romania on 25 February 2009. The concert was broadcast on the Romanian TVR2 and TVRi television networks, achieving their highest ratings in twelve months. A benefit concert, with Vitas performing "The Star", was held on 12 May 2009 in Sichuan province in memory of the victims of the previous year's earthquake there; a song known as "Mommy and Son" was released in late October 2009 in remembrance of the victims. It was the very first title track of the "Mommy and Son" album (released 1 September 2011), which included new songs, such as "C'est La Vie" (French for "Such is life"), "Once More", "Let the Father Teach!", "Young Rook" and others.
In early 2011, Vitas performed a series of seven "Sleepless Night" concerts in New York City, Toronto, Chicago, Miami, Vancouver, Los Angeles, and San Francisco. Later that year, he played the role of Bolshevik Comintern official Grigori Voitinsky in the Chinese propaganda film The Founding of a Party. He also starred with Huang Shengyi in the musical A Night to Be a Star. In March 2011, Vitas' concert tour "Mommy and Son" started in several cities of Russia. His large-scale concert at the Palace of Arts "Ukraina" in Kyiv in March 2012 was broadcast in Ukraine's main TV channels and later released in DVD. In 2013 he brought the tour to Germany, performing in several cities.
In June 2015, Vitas' unusual music video for his 2001 song "The 7th Element", which features him as a kind of humanoid alien performing on a Top of the Pops-esque show, became popular after it was posted on Reddit.
In 2017, Vitas' song "Smile" became popular in Brazil, where Facebook pages such as "South America Memes" were responsible for memes using footage from his performance of the song at the "Songs of My Mother" tour. On 5 October, he thanked the pages for his popularity.
In August 2020, Vitas' 20th anniversary EP OPERA20 was released in China. The album contained songs in English, Russian, and Chinese, as well as a collaboration with Chinese singer Elvis Wang. 1,000 limited edition vinyl copies were issued.
Noted for fiercely guarding his private life, Vitas has frequently declined interviews. He married his wife, Svetlana, in 2006. They have a daughter and a son. In an unusual move, he allowed himself and his family to be interviewed on the talk show Let Them Talk in January 2012.
In 2007, Vitas appeared on the talk show Everybody Is At Home to discuss his personal history and his development as an artist. Later that year, he appeared on the show again to address a man's allegations that he was Vitas' biological father. After much backlash from friends and family, and the man's admission of lying, the DNA results proved that he was not Vitas' father. To show that he had no hard feelings, Vitas sang and danced with the man's mother on the show.
On 10 May 2013, Vitas was arrested after hitting a cyclist with his car near the VVC Exhibition Centre in Moscow. The cyclist was uninjured and proceeded to film the scene with police afterward, which depicted an unkempt and possibly intoxicated Vitas being held by authorities. The accident was widely covered by Russia-1 and Channel One Russia, two of many other TV channels who broadcast Vitas' driving license with his personal data, which had been presented to journalists by a police officer.
- Aleksandr Gruzdev – guitar, saxophone, backing vocals (2001–present)
- Maxim Musatov – keyboards, backing vocals (2019–present)
- Aleksandr Illin – bass guitar, backing vocals (2016–present)
- Yaroslav Andrey – drums (2012–present)
- [unknown] – guitar, backing vocals (2014–2015)
- Vasiliy Musatov – keyboards (2004–2019)
- Ilya "G.IL.V" Grebenyuk – keyboards (2001–2003)
- Aleksey Rostov – keyboards (2003)
- Andrey Artemov – bass guitar, backing vocals (2007–2015)
- Rashit Kyamov – bass guitar, backing vocals (2001–2007, 2015–2016)
- Rushan Harryasov – drums (2001–2012)
|Философия чуда||Philosophy of Miracle||2001|
|Песни моей мамы||The Songs of My Mother||2003|
|Поцелуй длиною в вечность||A Kiss as Long as Eternity||2004|
|Возвращение домой||Return Home||2006|
|Криком журавлиным. Возвращение домой, Часть 2||Crane's Crying: Return Home, Part 2||2007|
|Хиты ХХ века||20th Century Hits||2008|
|**||Audio Visual Connect Series: Vitas (CD + DVD)||2008|
|Скажи, что ты любишь||Say You Love||2009|
|Шедевры трех веков||Masterpieces of Three Centuries||2010|
|Мама и Сын||Mother and Son||2011|
|Только ты. История моей любви, Часть 1||Only You: My Love Story, Part 1||2013|
|Я подарю тебе весь мир. История моей любви, Часть 2||I'll Give You the World: My Love Story, Part 2||2014|
|**||Come Just For You!||2016|
|**||Made in China||2016|
|Бит бомбит||Bit Bombit||2019|
|Витас в Кремле||Vitas at the Kremlin||2002|
|Песни моей мамы||The Songs Of My Mother||2003|
|Лучшее от Витаса на DVD||The Best from Vitas on DVD||2007|
|Возвращение Домой в Санкт-Петербурге||Return Home in Saint Petersburg||2007|
|Возвращение домой в Москва||Return Home in Moscow||2007|
|Бессонная ночь Петербург||Sleepless Night in Saint Petersburg||2010|
|Две столицы||Two Capitals||2011|
|Лучшее от Витаса на DVD (2)||The Best from Vitas on DVD (2)||2011|
|Мама и сын||Mommy and Son||2013|
|Лучшее от Витаса на DVD (3)||The Best from Vitas on DVD (3)||2014|
|Свет Нового Дня||Light of a New Day||2008|
|That Song (Remix of 7th Element by Drangabeats)||**||2015|
|Делю любовь на доли||I Divide Love Into Shares||2015|
|Roll With The Beat||**||2018|
|Opera #2 (HD)||**||2018|
|Back to the Stars||**||2020|
|За ней||After Her||2020|
|无词歌||Song Without Words||2020|
(with Elvis Wang)
|Towards the Sun||2020|
(with Timmy Trumpet)
|Опера No.2||Opera #2||2000|
|Опера No.1||Opera #1||2001|
|Дождь в Тбилиси||Rain in Tbilisi||2001|
|Блаженный Гуру||Blessed Guru||2001|
|Птица счастья||The Bird of Happiness||2004|
|Поцелуй длиною в вечность||Kiss As Long As Eternity||2004|
|Берега России||Shores of Russia||2005|
|Lucia Di Lammermoor||Lucia Di Lammermoor||2006|
|Криком журавлиным||Crane's Crying||2006|
|La Donna è Mobile||The woman is fickle||2009|
|Люби меня||Love Me||2009|
|Раз, два, три||One, Two, Three||2011|
|Мне бы в небо (Дуэт с Ксеноной)||I'd Like To Go Up To Sky (feat. Ksenona Ksenia)||2012|
|Я подарю тебе мир||I'll Give You The World||2013|
|Делю любовь на доли||I Divide Love Into Shares||2015|
|Made in China (feat. Sergey Pudovkin)||**||2016|
|Roll With The Beat (feat. Nappy Roots)||**||2018|
|Подари мне любовь||Give Me Love||2018|
|Back to the Stars||**||2020|
|Опера №...||Opera #...||2001|
|Философия чуда или Улыбнись||Philosophy of Miracle or Smile||2002–2003|
|Песни моей мамы||The Songs of My Mother||2003–2006|
|Возвращение домой||Return Home||2006–2009|
|Бессонная ночь||Sleepless Night||2009–2012|
|Мама и сын||Mommy and Son||2011–2013|
|Скажи, что ты любишь||Say You Love||2011|
|15 лет с вами. История моей любви||15 Years With You. My Love Story||2014–2017|
|Come Just For You!||**||2016|
|Подари мне любовь||Give Me Love||2018–present|
|2011||The Founding of a Party||Grigori Voitinsky|
|2012||A Night to Be a Star||Himself|
Awards and achievements
|2001, 2002, 2003||Best selling single Russian Record Prize||"Opera #2"|
|2001||Komsomolskaya Pravda and Internet Survey "Forum 2001" Musical Discovery of the Year||—|
|2000, 2001, 2002||Three-time-laureate of the festivals "The Song of the Year" (2000, 2001, 2002)||—|
|2001, 2002||Two-time-laureate of the People Prize "Golden Gramophone"||"Opera #2", "Smile!"|
|2001, 2002, 2003||Three-time-laureate of the Musical Prize "PODIUM" for the most stylish achievements in pop music||—|
|2001, 2002, 2003||Russian "People's HIT" Prize||"Opera #2", "Smile!", "The Star"|
|2001, 2003||Radio station "HIT FM" Prize "100 Per Cent HIT"||—|
|2002||National Musical Prize "Ovation" Soloist of the Year||—|
|2004||Russian Internet portal AFISHA.COM||—|
|2007||Order of Service to the Arts||—|
|2007||Best Album – NewsMusic Poll||"Crane's Crying"|
|2011||International Song Writers Contest Winner, 3rd place Music Video Category for "Opera #2". Also won second place in People's Choice vote.||"Opera #2"|
- "Витас менял права как перчатки". mk.ru. Retrieved 20 May 2013.
- "Витас готов отказаться от украинского гражданства". vesti.ua. 29 July 2014.
- "Vitas' official site. Press release". Vitas.com.ru. Archived from the original on 3 September 2007. Retrieved 28 September 2010.
- "Discography. Albums and singles. - Vitas' official website".
- "Gemini Sun Records Press Release". Vitas.com.ru. 29 January 2008. Archived from the original on 29 July 2013. Retrieved 28 September 2010.
- Source: Shanghai Daily
- DIVA website (Russian)
- "Biography of Vitas". Retrieved 17 March 2021.
- "Biography of Vitas". Retrieved 8 October 2019.
- VITAS - Full Concert: "Opera #..." (Moscow, 2001), February 2001, retrieved 6 May 2018
- "Витас споет в Одессе в память о трагически погибшей матери". od.vgorode.ua (in Russian). Retrieved 22 July 2020.
- Beloved Scoundrel (Сволочь ненаглядная) - Part 1, December 2002, retrieved 6 May 2018
- Crazy Day, 2005, retrieved 6 May 2018
- "Vitas: Artist Who You Have Been Waiting For" Archived 28 September 2010 at the Wayback Machine
- "Vitas'official site. News". Vitas.com.ru. Archived from the original on 28 September 2010. Retrieved 28 September 2010.
- "《花木兰》电影官方网站". Mulan.ent.sina.com.cn. Retrieved 28 September 2010.
- "Vitas Guest Stars in 'Mulan' – AsianFanatics Forum". Asianfanatics.net. 20 April 2009. Retrieved 28 September 2010.
- "Reddit - Videos". www.reddit.com. 30 June 2015. Retrieved 20 November 2016.
- "Vitas". www.facebook.com. Retrieved 22 December 2017.
- "Announcement post of Vitas' anniversary EP "OPERA20" on Weibo".
- "Announcement post of the vinyl release of Vitas' anniversary EP "OPERA20"".
- TV news of Russia-1 about Vitas' incident on 10 May 2013 (Russian)
- TV news of Channel One Russia about Vitas' incident on 10 May 2013 (Russian)
- Russian television Channel One Russia shown Vitas' Ukrainian driving license after accident on 10 May 2013 with all personal data (Russian)
- Russian television Russia-1 shown Vitas' Ukrainian driving license after accident on 10 May 2013 with all personal data (Russian)
- Дискография. Альбомы и синглы. - Официальный сайт Витаса (in Russian). (Vitas discography)
- Meadow, Matthew (7 July 2020). "Timmy Trumpet & legendary Vitas finally release stunning Tomorrowland ID". Your EDM. Archived from the original on 8 July 2020. Retrieved 13 July 2020.
- Видеоклипы - Официальный сайт Витаса (in Russian). (Vitas official site: music videos)
- "Music Videos - Vitas' official website".
- Sung in Italian.
- "Победителем NEWSmusic Pop Top 2007 стал Витас". NEWSmuz.com. 28 December 2007.
- International Songwriting Competition[failed verification] Archived 1 May 2013 at the Wayback Machine
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