The Cross of Changes (Press Release)
Virgin Germany 1993
"Old rules and habits have to be rejected and dismissed so that something new can be created" states Michael Cretu and thus created the project Enigma at the end of 1990. The Gregorian chants combined with dance rhythms created a wave of enthusiasm that swept everybody away: Bombay fortune tellers, London DJ's, Bangkok market tenders and Beverly Hills doctors, lawyers and attorneys all of them found their common ground in the music of Enigma.
Enigma (derived from Greek) is a multi-cultural phenomenon: people with different cultural assets, different beliefs and convictions and different complexions are rivetted and fascinated by Enigma alike. The secret of Enigma's magic is the dominating groove, the meditative repetition and the certainty that everything will dissolve in perfect harmony after the mounting tension.
Enigma is a completely new collage of sounds, rhythm and feeling for time: it is musical work with hardly anything in common with standard songs and their formats. Michael Cretu, who loved Bruckner's late Romanticism and who wanted to be a concert pianist, created a mile- stone of music history. Michael openly remarks: "I started writing hits the day I sold my piano".
Countless plagiarisms emerged over night, the typical sound of the Enigma flute was used in several hundred other music productions and almost every sequence of MCMXC a.D. was used in TV and movie productions. It is rather funny that the world-wide sales of Gregorian chants were boosted by Enigma's success and this reflects the tremendous impact that Enigma had. More than 12 million Enigma CDs were sold world-wide. MCMXC a.D. was awarded with gold, or respectively, platinum in 25 countries. MCMXC a.D. has been in the Billboard charts since 2.3.1991 - longer than any other German album. Michael Cretu was the most successful Virgin artist in 1991 and 1992.
Film producer Robert Evans asked Michael to write the title song for the motion picture Sliver featuring Sharon Stone. Michael wrote and arranged Carly's Song and Carly's Loneliness for the movie.
Despite all expectations, Michael took exactly 3 years to produce The Cross of Changes. Long before the last track was recorded, the pre-orders amounted to more than 1.4 million units. Michael wasn't going to be pressured: "Music is part of my soul - and this ultimately decides everything".
Consequently The Cross Of Changes shows many autobiographic traits and incorporates a lot of personal experience that Michael has made in those past three years since the incredible success of MCMXC a.D.. The Cross Of Changes is a musical step forward but it nevertheless incorporates all of the instinctive elements that MCMXC a.D. does but in a completely new guise.
Born on May 18, 1957, in Bucharest.
Lyzeum No. 2 in Bucharest, a college for young and very gifted musical talents. Main subject: Piano.
Five months of study in Paris.
Cretu moves to Bad Homburg and is successfully admitted to the Academy of Music in Frankfurt. Prof. Philipp Mohler, Head of Academy, is aware of Michael Cretu's extraordinary talent and supports him.
Michael Cretu passes his final exam with distinction. He starts working as a studio musician and also arranges songs.
First gold award as producer.
Cretu's first album on Virgin is released as Legionare.
Michael achieves top chart positions as writer, producer and keyboarder of Moti Special. Michael produces Sandra's first international no. 1 hit single Maria Magdalena - a number 1 single in more than 30 countries around the globe. Michael has produced 6 albums and a Greatest Hits album for Sandra.
Michael Cretu works as a producer for Mike Oldfield and achieves gold status.
Sandra Lauer and Michael Cretu get married.
Enigma - MCMXC a.D. is released on December 3, 1990.
Michael writes and arranges Carly's Song and Carly's Loneliness for the movie Sliver. In December the second Enigma album The Cross Of Changes is released.
Enigma Chart Positions
sadeness MCMXC a.D. single album territory chart positions/sales awards argentina* -/- 7/gold australia 2/gold 2/gold, platinum austria 1/gold 3/gold belgium 1/gold, platinum 3/gold, platinum brazil 1/- 1/gold canada 1/- 7/gold, platinum denmark 1/- 7/silver finland 6/- 3/- france 1/gold 1/gold, double-platinum germany 1/gold, platinum 3/gold, platinum greece 1/- 1/silver holland 1/gold 5/gold, platinum hong kong** 1/- -/- ireland 1/- -/- israel 1/- -/gold italy 1/silver 5/gold, platinum korea* -/- 1/gold malaysia** 1/- -/gold, platinum mexico* -/- -/gold new zealand 2/gold 2/gold norway 1/- 4/silver portugal 1/- 1/gold, platinum singapore 1/- 1/gold, double-platinum south africa 1/- 1/gold, platinum spain 1/- 1/gold, platinum sweden 1/gold, platinum 3/gold switzerland 1/- 2/gold, double-platinum taiwan* -/- 3/gold, platinum thailand 4/- -/- turkey* -/- -/gold uk 1/gold 1/gold, platinum usa 5/gold, platinum 6/gold, platinum venezuela 1/- 1/- * no official sales charts for singles ** airplay charts for single
Original document courtesy of Virgin Norway, translated by Joar Grimstvedt.
Document from later date courtesy of Virgin Germany. Reproduced without permission for private and research purposes only.