British singer Sarah Brightman has long been fascinated with space and the news that she will travel to the International Space Station fulfills a lifelong dream.
The soprano who sang I Lost My Heart to a Starship Trooper in 1978 and is known for performing as Christine in The Phantom of the Opera announced last year she would travel to the International Space Station.
She could be the first civilian in space since Cirque du Soleil founder Guy Laliberté. Russia has limited space available for space tourism and slowed its civilian space program in 2010.
"That world has been closed off to us for a time, but it’s opening up to us again," Brightman said in an interview with CBC News.
Touring in support of her album Dreamchaser, which will be released Tuesday, she says she has passed all the medical and psychological tests for space flight, but still has much to do to prepare for her adventure.
The classically trained singer is interested in participating in experiments that look at what happens in her body when she sings in space. And she wants to create an international concert in which she joins in from the space station.
Brightman even sees parallels between the rigours of touring and enduring the discomfort of space travel.
She says her new album tries to capture some of the optimism and excitement of life in the 1960s, when space travel was new.
"I was brought up in the 1960s and actually was lucky enough to watch on a black and white television screen the first man walk on the moon. Space exploration seemed part of what we were expecting as children and it seems that something completely out of the box that it is going to be a reality," she said.
Although there is no definite date for her space flight, it is likely to be in 2015.