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Sarah Brightman to start training for space station journey in January

September 03, 2014, 15:39 UTC+3 ZVYOZDNY GORODOK (Moscow Region)
Sarah Brightman will pay a total of $52 million for her next year’s flight on board of the Russian-made Soyuz spacecraft to the ISS
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British singer Sarah Brightman performs during a concert

British singer Sarah Brightman performs during a concert

© EPA/Miguel Sierra

ZVYOZDNY GORODOK (Moscow Region), September 03. /ITAR-TASS/. British famed soprano singer Sarah Brightman would begin pre-flight trainings for her journey to the International Space Station (ISS) as a space tourist early next year, instead of this autumn, Yuri Lonchakov, the head of the Russia’s Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Centre, said on Wednesday.

“She will begin trainings in the Star City in January of 2015 and therefore we are all waiting for her,” Lonchakov said adding that he believed “her training will be a success.”

Less than three months ago Lonchakov said that the famous singer had already passed a number of medical examination and tests and was ready to begin preparations for the trip to the ISS at the Star City space training facility in the Moscow Region in September or October.

Lonchakov’s earlier statement that Brightman could start her trainings this autumn was also confirmed in June by the president of the US-based company in charge of organizing her trip.

Tom Shelley, the president of US-based Space Adventures Ltd. company, said at a National Space Club Florida Committee meeting in June that Brightman, 54, planned to make the trip to the ISS in September of 2015 and this fall she intended to start the pre-flight trainings at the space training center outside Moscow.

"She is absolutely 100% committed. She's putting together her mission plan now,” Shelley said adding that Brightman wants to be the first professional singer ever to sing in space.

Shelley also said that Brightman would pay a total of $52 million for her next year’s flight on board of the Russian-made Soyuz spacecraft to the ISS, where she plans to spend 10 days as a space tourist.

Brightman, who starred in Andrew Lloyd Webber's “Phantom of the Opera” and is the world’s best-selling soprano singer with over 30 million of CDs sold, first announced her intentions to travel to the ISS as a space tourist in August 2012.

Last year the Russian Space Agency (Roscosmos) announced that it reached a relevant agreement with Space Adventures to proceed with the superstar’s plans of traveling into space.

If the British singer reaches the ISS next year, she will become the eighth space tourist in the world.

The pioneer space tourist is US entrepreneur Dennis Tito, who made the flight to the ISS in 2001 for $20 million and spent eight days at the station. The most recent space tourist at the station is Cirque du Soleil co-founder Guy Laliberte, who spent 11 days at the ISS in 2009 for $40 million.

The only female space tourist so far reaching the ISS is Anousheh Ansari, an Iranian-American engineer and co-founder and chairwoman of Prodea Systems. Her 12-day stay at the space station in 2006 cost her $20 million.

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