In 2013, Avantasia issued The Mystery of Time, a full scale conceptual collaboration with the Deutsches Filmorchester Babelsberg
. The list of vocalists was impressive: Joe Lynn Turner
, frequent collaborator and ex-Helloween
frontman Michael Kiske
's Biff Byford, and Magnum
's Bob Catley
among them (sometimes two and three at a time). The album charted number two in Germany, and in the top ten across Europe. It also entered the US charts at number nine--the first of the band's recordings to do so. The outfit undertook another five month tour, playing three hour shows and in sold out venues as well and at festivals in Europe, South America, Japan, Russia and Canada, culminating in a headline postion at the Wacken Open Air Festival, a performance Sammet claimed was Avantasia's last.
The claim was only in reference to live performances as The Mystery of Time left open-ended question in its narrative.
In January 2016, Avantasia released the sequel, Ghostlights. Many of the same singers returned and Sammet added to their numbers with appearances by Geoff Tate
, Dee Snider
, den Adel
, and Ronnie Atkins, to name a few. ~ Steve Huey, Rovi