September 20 2014 Latest news:
Thursday, May 1, 2014
A former Suffolk schoolgirl has sung for dozens of European leaders at a palace in Prague where the Czech president described her as an “angel”.
President Milos Zeman reportedly told Christina Johnston she had the “most beautiful voice” after her televised performance at the Presidents of EU Summit Eastern Partnership concert last week.
The 26-year-old opera singer, who attended Framlingham College with fellow soprano Laura Wright, said it was an honour to perform for such distinguished guests.
“It was fantastic to be able to sing in such an amazing building,” she said.
“The president got up to present me with some flowers and said I had the most beautiful voice he had heard in a long time and that when I walked on to the stage I looked like an angel.
“It was very lovely to hear him say that and such an honour to receive such kind words.”
The coloratura soprano now lives in the Czech capital with her Russian husband and fellow Old Framlinghamian Zlacheslav Myachina.
Although she says Suffolk “still feels like home”, Ms Johnston has relished the opportunities offered by her European setting. She has performed multiple roles with the Czech and Russian national theatres, was made the youngest Queen of the Night on an opera stage and is currently a soloist at the Prague State Opera.
“In Europe everyone enjoys classical music – I perform two concerts a week and the venues are packed, everyone gives you a standing ovation - it’s amazing,” she said.
The former Woodbridge resident is now looking forward to her next solo role performing the soundtrack for Disney’s Aldabra, due out next year.
Despite her achievements, Ms Johnston says her career is “only just beginning”.
“I still feel that I have a long way to go – I just want to make other people happy and bring them beautiful music.”