LSI London Hampstead experienced a rare treat last week when Ukrainian student Milana Sarukhanya performed Opera and Modern Classics to an enraptured audience. Despite being a busy lunchtime, the hall and stairways were packed with students, teachers and staff as hush descended as school director Sally Muse introduced Milana. Incredibly at only 18, Milana is already a consummate performer singing an aria from the Italian opera Gianni Schicchi by Giacomo Puccini, a Russian romance and finishing with the George Gershwin classic Summertime (click here to listen to the full audio recording or see below a short video extract ). It’s difficult to believe with her talent and confidence that Milana is not already treading the boards of more prestigious stages than LSI so we had to find out more about her plans for the future and where she got her love of Opera .
Milana grew up in the Crimea in Ukraine and whilst none of her family were musicians, her mother had always dreamed of becoming an actress and so when Milana started to show interest in singing and opera at the incredibly young age of 5, her mother was eager to nurture her fledging talent. From the age of 8 years old Milana received singing lessons and finally at 15 years old she began the rigorous training to become an opera singer.
“My mother was the one who has really supported and inspired me to achieve my ambition to become a professional opera singer. I owe so much to her. For me London was the best place to come to pursue this dream. England and Germany are universally acknowledged as the best places to study opera right now to be trained in the best techniques. Also there are many more job opportunities here than at home.”
It seems that Milana is now close to achieving her dream as she has been offered a place at the prestigious Royal Academy in London to study Opera and has applied for the “Raffy Manoukian” scholarship to help fund her course. As a non-native English speaker Milana is also required to demonstrate her English language level and so she is currently studying on the IELTS course at London Hampstead.
“I have enjoyed my time here at LSI. The teachers are great and I have made lots of friends. It was so nice that so many students and staff came to watch me perform. I really appreciated it guys!”
All of us at LSI wish Milana all best with her future studies and career. We’re sure we’ll see her name up in lights sometime soon!