Ancient Voices is the main theme song of the reality television series, Survivor. It is used mainly for the opening credits for each episode, where it contains photographs or very short motion pictures of the castaways.
Ancient Voices was musically scored by American composer Russ Landau. Contrary to popular belief that the song was merely "incoherent chanting," its lyrics are actually based on a Russian folk song entitled "Poidu Vyidu na Ulitsu" (Пойду выйду на улицу), meaning "I'll go and get outside". The renditions made for Survivor: Thailand and Survivor: China included oriental tones. It may include local instruments, like the Aboriginals' didgeridoo, which was used in the theme song of Survivor: The Australian Outback, and some subsequent background music used in future seasons.
Ancient Voices has been used by the US version of Survivor since its inception in 2000, and it has been rehashed every season to fit in with the location's culture. The opening credits have a montage of the survivors in their candid moments.
While shortened versions of Ancient Voices are used in the opening credits of the series, which lasts about a minute to a minute and ten seconds, each rendition has its own "extended version" that is available through iTunes and soundtracks released by CBS.
Since Survivor: Micronesia, opening sequences are gradually shortened every week, with the eliminated contestant(s) getting cropped away from the credits.
Following Russ Landau's departure after Survivor: Blood vs. Water, previous renditions of the music are mashed-up for future opening sequences.
List of Renditions
|Ancient Voices Rendition Per Season|
|Heroes vs. Villains|
|Blood vs. Water|
|San Juan del Sur|
|Millennials vs. Gen X|
|Heroes vs. Healers vs. Hustlers|
In 2001, composer Paul Winter filed an $800,000 lawsuit against Russ Landau and Survivor Executive Producer Mark Burnett for copyright infringement. Winter claimed that there are hints of his 1987 album Earthbeat that are in the Survivor theme music. Earthbeat was a collaboration between Winter's new age band and a traditional Russian group, the Dimitri Pokrovsky Singers. The result of the accusation is currently unknown.
- In 2001, Ancient Voices won a Primetime Emmy Award for "Outstanding Main Title Theme Music."
- The rendition of Ancient Voices for the eighth season, Survivor: All-Stars, was an amalgam of the renditions of the show's first seven seasons.
- For the theme of Survivor: China, Landau commissioned an all-female Chinese choir in Beijing to translate the Poidu Vyidu na Ulitsu into Mandarin and added a Chinese folk song to the edit.
- During the titles for Survivor: Nicaragua the theme was the original version from Survivor: Borneo. Although there was a theme created, it was dropped, though it remains available on iTunes.
- A question on the game show Jeopardy! was asked "This TV show's theme song, Ancient Voices, varies every season to match the locale."
- ↑ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vpAHXhNtOqg
- ↑ http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0239195/trivia
- ↑ http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/entertainment/1493961.stm
- ↑ "Ancient Voices In China rev2 Pt 1". Russ Landau. January 13, 2008. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MKBFfx-3YtY&list=PL0DEF52283D470BBD. Retrieved December 14, 2013.