Soprano Brightman to hit new high note with space station trip
By Anastasia Gorelova
LONDON (Reuters) - After a stellar career ranging from the disco hit "I Lost My Heart to a Starship Trooper" to global success in "Phantom of the Opera", British soprano Sarah Brightman is preparing for a unique performance: a live concert from space.
Brightman, 54, will be the eighth space tourist, and first professional singer, traveling as one of a three-person team to the International Space Station in a Soyuz space rocket that will launch from the Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on Sept. 1. She will spend 10 days orbiting the Earth.
"I cannot explain in full why this is something that has been very strong within me," Brightman said on Tuesday at a press launch event for her trip.
"I am incredibly excited and as I have said, sometimes overwhelmed, but I am finding all sorts of things about myself."
She was inspired to travel into space when she watched the first moon landing on television in 1969 and says she has nurtured the ambition ever since.
Brightman is reported by British media to have paid 35 million pounds ($53 million) for the trip. She said that for contractual reasons she could not reveal the amount.
The singer was assessed for suitability for the trip at Star City outside Moscow in July 2012, and since then has undergone a grueling training regime.
She plans to perform a song from the space station, accompanied by an orchestra back on Earth, but has not yet selected the tune. She has been working with ex-husband Andrew Lloyd Webber, the composer of multiple hit musicals including "Phantom of the Opera" which made Brightman a global star. Continued...