Christopher Lee - Biography


Sir Christopher's ultimate love of fantasy has taken him into a new journey in the last decade. It all started when he was asked to appear in the role of The Wizard King for Rhapsody of Fire's album 'Symphony of Enchanted Lands II: The Dark Secret' (2004). That was then followed by 'Triumph of Agony' (2006), 'The Frozen Tears of Angels' (2010) and 'From Chaos to Eternity' (2011). He also worked on the EPs 'The Dark Secret" (2004) and 'The Cold Embrace of Fear' (2010).

In the single 'The Magic of the Wizard's Dream' (2005) he sang a duet with classically trained tenor, Fabio Lione, the lead singer of Rhapsody, and which was recorded in four languages. The single charted in several European Countries and was performed
live at the German Chart Show.

In Manowar's album 'Battle Hymns MMXI' (2010), he reprised the role of Orson Welles in the track 'The Dark Avenger'.

Also in 2010 he released his first metal inspired album 'Charlemagne: By the Sword and the Cross'. The album won him the 'Spirit of Metal' award at the 2010 Metal Hammer Golden God Awards ceremony. The award was presented to him by Black Sabbath's Tony Iommi.

Christopher Lee's singing voice was discovered over 55 years ago by the Swedish tenor Jussi Björling, considered the 'Caruso' of the North. He was invited to attend an audition at the Swedish Opera House, to be trained for a career as a professional opera singer under Björling's personal guidance. Unfortunately at the time, Christopher Lee was already training to become an actor and he could not financially afford to remain in Sweden.

Christopher Lee was blessed with a unique tone of voice. His Great Grandmother founded the first Opera Company in Australia and in her day was as famous as Melba, and known as the 'Tasmanian Nightingale'. All herdaughters were also opera singers, and one could say that is in the "genes". Christopher Lee himself is an avid and knowledgeable opera enthusiast, having attended the performances of just about every great opera singer of the 20th Century.

On movie sets, Christopher Lee would warm up his voice by singing and sometimes entertaining his fellow actors and crew. The first director to single out his talent for singing was Pere Portabella, who together with the painter Joan Miró and the sculptor Antoni Tàpies, created the award winning experimental movie 'EL Umbracle'(1970). In the film, Christopher Lee takes the stage and sings for the first time, in front of a camera.

In 1973, Director Robin Hardy cast Christopher Lee in one of his most famous movie roles, considered today the 'Citizen Kane' of fantasy cinema, 'The Wicker Man'. He is remembered as much for his singing as for his deceivingly charming portrayal of Lord Summerisle,

Richard O'Brien and Richard Hartley of "Rocky Horror" fame, chose Christopher Lee as one of the vocalist in the studio recording of the 'Rocky Horror Show' (1995). A previous collaboration with the O'Brien/Hartley team came with the feature film/musical, 'The Return of Captain Invincible' (1983) co-starring Alan Arkin. Christopher Lee performs two songs, 'Name Your Poison' and 'Mr. Evil Midnight'. 'Name Your Poison' became a big hit and was released as a single. The song showcased Christopher Lee's varied vocal and stylistic range, encompassing Pop, Rock and Operatic styles.

Other recordings include 'The King of Elfland's Daughter' (1970) for Chrysalis, Stravinsky's 'The Soldier's Tale' (1986) which is unique because he sang every single role, including the women, 'Peter and the Wolf'(1989), conducted by Yehudi Menuhin for Nimbus, 'The King and I' (1989) released on EMI and 'Christopher Lee sings 'Devils, Rogues and Other Villains, from Broadway to Bayreuth' (1998), amongst others.

His versatility and ability to be of any age, together with his willingness to take on new challenges, more often than not has landed him in some of the most unusual collaborations. For instance, Paul McCartney's 'Band on the Run', R&B boy band 'Damage' In the 1980s, during the height of Italo Disco, he provided vocals to Kathy Joe Daylor's song 'Little Witch'