Despina Vandi , born as Despina Malea onJuly 1969, is a Greek singer of Pontic Greek ancestry. Born in Tbingen near Stuttgart, Germany, Vandis family returned to Kavala, Greece when she was six years old. After moving to Athens in the early 1990s, Vandi signed with Minos EMI and released two albums Gela Mou and Esena Perimeno . She then began an exclusive collaboration with songwriterproducer Phoebus and struck commercial success with her third album, Deka Endoles , followed by the multiplatinum Profities , where she established a more pop stage performance style and image, becoming one of the most prominent portrayers of the lakopop genre.
Although born in Germany, Vandis family was from Kavala, Greece, where she and her family moved when she was six years old. As a result, she did not learn German, unlike the rest of her family. She has one older brother and an older sister. Living in a lowermiddleclass family, her dream was to become either an actress or a singer but she always knew that she should have something more solid as a background so she went on to study psychology, philosophy, and education at the University of Thessaloniki. When she first began singing, she used the stage name of Elli Mara before adopting the Vandi moniker, to hide that she was singing from her parents.