Sarah Brightman to Spend
Sarah Brightman to spend $54 million on space flight of fancy
Renowned pop-star-turned soprano and businesswoman Sarah Brightman is reportedly set to pay £30 million ($54 million) for a 10-day stay on board the International Space Station next year.
Brightman is also reportedly hoping to become the first professional singer to perform in space, if she can beats Lady Gaga to the feat. She could not, however, be the first person to hold a note in space, nor do so appearing in a YouTube clip.
That honour belongs to former astronaut Chris Hadfield who recorded Jewel in the Night on Christmas Eve 2012 aboard the International Space Station and in 2013 became world-famous for his rendition of David Bowie’s Space Oddity.
According to Reuters, Tom Shelley, president of Space Adventures confirmed that Brightman could begin her training within three months for a flight aboard a Russian Soyuz spacecraft, which would take her to the station in September 2015.
“She’s absolutely 100 per cent committed,” Shelley told a National Space Club Florida Committee meeting this week. “She’s putting together her mission plan now.”
Brightman, who had a pop hit I Lost My Heart to a Starship Trooper in 1978 with the group Hot Gossip, is reportedly worth £36 million, but she is also the ex-wife of billionaire composer Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber.
As much as Brightman’s jaunt sounds like great fun, one has to wonder why the former wife of a billionaire needs to go into space at all, given that her options for fun outings on Earth are probably greater than most of us.
We know we are being facetious, but couldn’t help wondering what else could she do with £30 million? She could afford to get Madonna or Bruce Springsteen to play a private gig every Saturday night for a year, or go high-stakes gambling with a Packer for at least a few days. Or, if she felt more socially-minded she could build – from scratch – between one and three schools in the United Kingdom, or 7428 fresh water wells in Mozambique or Malawi or feed at least 476,190 African school children for one year in schools.
Brightman has been involved in philanthropic projects and most notably helped donated a sizeable amount to vicims of Hurricane Ingrid in Mexico in 2013 from the proceeds of concert ticket sales.
But this particular vanity project surely has to rank as one of the great exercises in outrageous spending by a celebrity. Or one of the worst.