The soprano, long married to the baritone Mark Guleghin, has found new happiness with Russia’s Olympic state coach of Greco-Roman wrestling, Vyacheslav Mkrtychev. In an extraordinarily frank interview she says of her first marriage:
‘Personal life? I did not have it … The worst thing – we always sing about love, but most do not love or are loved. Opera is too heavy a burden for women.You can not imagine how painful.’
And of her new husband: ‘He knows what a person needs before the “championship”. When I have to go on stage he creates the perfect psychological comfort around me. And when I do not need to sing, I flutter around my husband and care for him.’
She’s thinking of moving back to Moscow.
With Placido Domingo and Marta, husband Slava, after Nabucco at the Mariinsky.