GREECE – Sakis Rouvas is a Greek recording, film and television artist; model; actor; businessman and former pole vaulter. Born in Corfu, he won medals on the national athletics team during the 1980s. Rouvas began a musical career in 1991 as one of Greece’s first dance-pop performers. His tenor vocals, complex choreography, costumes, and technological advancements have been credited with transforming music videos and live performances. Rouvas is noted for avoiding domestic music, attaining success for a non-laïko or -éntekhno artist, and for breaking cultural, social, artistic, and generational barriers in Greece and Cyprus.
During the early 1990s, Rouvas signed with PolyGram Records and won the Thessaloniki Song Festival. Despite five commercially successful albums, his personal life (including his military service and 1997 Greek-Turkish peace concert, which damaged his public image) has been publicized. Rouvas signed with Minos EMI in 1997, returning to the charts with Kati Apo Mena (1998) and 21os Akatallilos (2000) and ending his 14-year collaboration with manager Ilias Psinakis.
One of the few Greek entertainers to gain recognition abroad, he has been popular in the Balkans since the 1990s. By the 2010s, Rouvas had expanded his career to film, television, theatre and fashion. His single “Shake It” is the all-time bestselling single in Greece; his songs and videos, such as “1992”, “Aima, Dakrya & Idrotas”, “Ela Mou”, “Xana”, “Tora Arhizoun Ta Dyskola”, “Den Ehei Sidera I Kardia Sou”, “Ypirhes Panta”, “Antexa”, “Se Thelo San Trelos” and “+ Se Thelo”, have topped the popular Greek charts.
Since 2003 Rouvas has been in a relationship with model Katia Zygouli, with whom he has four children. He is involved in social issues, and has been praised for his dedication to philanthropic organizations.
Rouvas has won six Arion Music Awards, 15 Pop Corn Music Awards, 22 MAD Video Music Awards, four Status Man of the Year Awards, an MTV Europe Music Award and a World Music Award. Several number-one albums and singles which have been certified gold or higher have made him one of Greece’s most popular musical artists. Known for his independence, Rouvas’ musical, fashion and performance styles have influenced other artists for over two decades. In 2009 Down Town named him its “Entertainer of the Decade”; in 2010, Forbes listed him as the third-most-influential celebrity in Greece and the country’s top-ranked singer.