Belfast Telegraph

Chariots of Fire tops Classic FM poll

By Kerri-Ann Roper

Chariots Of Fire has beaten sporting anthems Jerusalem and You'll Never Walk Alone to be named the favourite piece of sporting classical music by Classic FM listeners.

The music, written and recorded by Greek composer Vangelis, was the theme tune to the 1981 film of the same name and was also featured during the 2012 London Olympics opening ceremony, where it was performed by the London Symphony Orchestra, and featured a comic appearance by actor Rowan Atkinson in character as Mr Bean.

It was also used for medal ceremonies at the London games.

The work is part of a Top 20 list voted for by Classic FM listeners, with Giacomo Puccini's Nessun Dorma in second place and Rugby World Cup theme song World In Union (written by Charlie Skarbek and featuring Gustav Holst lyrics) in third place.

Nessun Dorma was chosen by the BBC as the theme music to its coverage of the Italia 90 World Cup.

According to Classic FM, football is the sport most linked to classical music with eight of the top 20 songs in their list associated with the game.

You'll Never Walk Alone, which has become an anthem for Liverpool supporters since the 1960s, is in sixth position, while Handel's Zadok The Priest (which inspired the Champions League theme music) comes in seventh position and has been revealed to be a favourite of former England footballer Wayne Rooney.

Rooney said: "Playing in and winning a Champions League final was something I dreamed of as a kid and a big part of why I left my boyhood club.

"My first game for Manchester United was in the Champions League at Old Trafford when I scored a hat trick, but nothing can beat winning the final in Moscow against one of our biggest rivals at the time, Chelsea.

"Every time I hear that music, the memories come flooding back."

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