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Opera » Opera | 43 toire for my performances. I’m often asked to sing Habanera, because Carmen is the most popular opera on the planet. But there’s certainly also the Delilah aria, the duet from La Traviata, Eboli’s aria from Don Carlos, but also ‘O sole mio, Ave Maria etc.” You were also a great opera diva during the time of the former Yugoslavia. What do you miss the most about that time? “The diverseness of peoples and mentalities in the same country, which connected people. For me, diversity is always a wealth that connects, while Yugoslavia also had 10 opera houses. I’d already sung in all of its theatres and most prestigious halls by the time I turned 30.” It was during last December that you gave your premiere performance as Orpheus in the operatic masterpiece Orpheus and Eurydice. What were the impressions like? “I’d already encountered the character of Orpheus, but also composer Luigi Rossi, when I sang the title role for the world premiere of this work at Milan’s La Scala. But I spent a long time waiting for this Gluck’s Orpheus, and it provided me with an opportunity to accentuate the most beautiful and rarest human traits: courage, audacity, loyalty, self-sacrifice, chivalry, purity of soul, and not merely love for Eurydice.” Do you have a favourite among your roles to date, and some role that you’ve been awaiting eagerly? “As someone who has to date sung over 70 roles, it’s tough for me to say which is the dearest to me. That has changed throughout my life. Perhaps my favourite is one that I haven’t sung, and that is Tosca written for soprano, though I’ve also sung roles of soprano speciality. I’mnow interested in newworks that are unknown tome, which bring challenges that I haven’t previously encountered.” Which world stage that you haven’t already graced would you like to perform on, and do you have a favourite? “My favourite stage is that of theTheatroMunicipal in Rio de Janeiro, where I sang several roles, including, amongst others, Carmen with Placido Domingo. I adore Rio generally. Although I’ve so far performed on over 120 stages around the world and that makes me feel very fulfilled, I would be glad to sing somewhere I haven’t previously. For example, Australia, Qatar, Egypt etc.” York, and that hit me very hard. Throughout all those long years, I flew to America many times on connecting flights. I’m proud that Serbia is today the only country in the region that has a direct flight to New York.” However, returning to music, what would you say following the completion of the very successful project Ko se boji opere još [Who is still afraid of opera]? “My authorial project “Who is still afraid of opera”, intended for everyone aged fromeight to 108, is conceived in such a way that, whoever attends it, the answer to that question is - nobody.Through stage performance play, interactionswith the audience and subtle explanations, the audience enjoys, learns and is fulfilled spiritually. A particularly valuable part of the project is represented by my talented young guest performers, who represent a natural link between different generations.” What would you sing to those who are only just discovering the opera; which arias would they definitely fall in love with? “At my concerts, I’ve always primarily thought about thosewho are just discovering the opera. And who attended my performance either through belief in me or out of curiosity... My obligation was to ensure that they didn’t leave the concert feeling disappointed. I very carefully select the reperI see Air Serbia like my ownchild “I’m known in my circles as someone who is a passionate fan of the Serbian national airline. I would like to commend the behaviour of those employed at Air Serbia, because of the emphasised attention they bestow on me, and that attention and respect is what distinguishes our airline from others. Well done for the continuous effort to ensure that Air Serbia constantly advances”. Ponosna sam što je Srbija danas jedina zemlja u regionu koja ima direktan let za Njujork I’m proud that Serbia is today the only country in the region that has a direct flight to New York