5 Questions: Sarah Brightman

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5 Questions is a series by Steve Duffy –
Known for her three-octave range and for pioneering the classical-crossover music movement, Sarah Brightman has amassed global sales of more than 30 million units. The only artist to have simultaneously topped Billboard ’s dance and classical music charts, Brightman has racked up more than 180 gold and platinum awards in over 40 countries. She is also known for her iconic star turn in The Phantom of the Opera, whose soundtrack has sold more than 40 million copies worldwide. Her duet with Bocelli, “Time To Say Goodbye,” became an international success selling 12 million copies worldwide. Brightman’s albums Eden, La Luna, Harem, and Symphony were each chart-topping Billboard hits and accompanied by world tours. Additionally, Brightman has performed at such prestigious events as the 2007 Concert for Diana, the 1992 Barcelona Olympic Games and the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games.


SD: Hymn is your first studio album since 2013. What story are telling with this album?

SB: About 5 years ago, I visited the Russian Space program and that took me up to places that human beings don’t normally get to go. I went through the training and psychologically, it was tough. I really learned things about myself that I didn’t even know. When I finished the training, I really needed to ground myself because there is really nothing like that experience anywhere. I invited an opera friend and coach and we worked on my voice. I wanted to songs that were full of hope and light and be surrounded by a choir. I wanted songs that made me feel safe and familiar from my childhood.  I feel that in this moment of time, the world and people are a little muddled and feeling a bit afraid of what the future holds. I feel this new album is something that is full of light and something that will be comforting in these times of uncertainly.

SD: Favorite thing about touring with a new album?

SB: It is a real relief to then be able to communicate your end product to an audience. When you do record, you are communicating through your song choice, but your imagination of how it will be received does end at the microphone. To be able to communicate to an audience and get feedback is a wonderful thing.  

SD: You have had some amazing duet / collaborations partners over the years, from Andrea Bocelli to Michael Crawford. Do you have a favorite?

SB: It is hugely wonderful for me to be able to perform duets. Because I am generally a solo performer and at times you can feel alone, so to have that communication with somebody else is great. My most favorite person that I have worked with is Plácido Domingo. He is an incredible singer. The way he communicates so perfectly in song is a beautiful thing and he gives you all his energy when he performs with you. 

SD: What is your guilty music pleasure?

SB: It would be the Beach Boys. I love them. They created some wonderful music and when I was younger their music really created some beautiful pictures of what California was really like.   I do have a home right off the beach in Santa Monica and when I am there and driving down the highway, I love to blare their music on the radio.


SD:  How does it feel to be forever associated with your role as Christine Daaé?

SB: It’s a delight for me. I often go see the Phantom with a friend or a niece and I am still very delighted by it. I love watching the new performers bring their own piece of Christine to life. It is a pleasure to be associated with a piece of music that has really stood the test of time. The Phantom is such a timeless piece and I think people are always going to enjoy it just as much as I did. 


For more information on Sarah, visit www.sarahbrightman.com. To purchase tickets to see Sarah perform at the Orpheum Theatre on February 7, 2019, visit www.ticketmaster.com or www.crossroadspresents.com

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