The late David Bowie
and his relationship with Cyprus
Although it’s probably not very well known, the late rock star David Bowie had a connection to Cyprus in the early seventies as his first wife Mary Angela Barnett was born in Ayios Dhometios in Nicosia on September 25, 1949 of English and Polish descent and with American citizenship.
Angela Barnett’s father was a mining engineer and ran a mill for Cyprus Mines Corporation. Her mother was Helena Maria Galas. She was educated in Cyprus and Switzerland and the UK. She met David Bowie in London in 1969, at the age of 19 and they were married a year later, and a son a year after that and divorced in 1980.
In 1950, Angie Barnett with her family moved to the US briefly and returned to Cyprus four years later and even after moving to the UK, she was a regular visitor to the island until 1974 when the family fled on one of the last planes out of Nicosia airport during the Turkish invasion.
In an article in 2000, entitled ‘Land of Passion, she said: “I am a Cypriot by disposition. I don’t have a passport or Cypriot nationality but my heart is Cypriot, not Greek or Turkish Cypriot, just Cypriot. I enjoy a passionate love affair with my birthplace. Cyprus is in my heart. It was my home and everything I am: I owe to the magical garden I inhabited as a child.”
She also mentions the Cyprus Mail in the article, saying that in 1956 the British army bivouacked company property. “I heard my folks discussing it at lunch. My dad said, “The British act as if the mine needs protection by them. It sends the wrong signal.”
“My father handed me a piece of the Cyprus Mail, the newspaper and said, “Baby, that article on the jack-ass that got hit by the truck is on page 2!”
Cyprus even featured in Bowie’s song ‘Move On’ in 1979 in which he sings: “Cyprus is my island / When the going’s rough / I would love to find you / Somewhere in a place like that”, having visited the island in May 1971, and holidaying at Xeros and Kyrenia.
Source: Cyprus Mail