Star soprano sings spectacular surprise concert 1,300 metres up in a hot air balloon

21 June 2024, 21:11

Star soprano sings spectacular concert in a hot air balloon

By Kyle Macdonald

Rachel Willis-Sørensen has taken her soaring notes to new heights, as she sings an opera classic high above a stunning Turkish landscape.

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American soprano Rachel Willis-Sørensen is known for her incredible singing of Mozart, Puccini and Wagner roles on the great opera stages of the world.

But on a recent trip to Turkey, and while enjoying an early morning hot air balloon trip, she couldn’t resist taking the opportunity to sing to a sky-filled scene.

1,300 metres in the air, Willis-Sørensen sings the soaring and evocative lines of ‘Song to the Moon’ from Dvořák’s opera Rusalka, one of the best-loved of all soprano arias. Watch the beautiful moment above.

Read more: Singer casually gives astonishing karaoke performance of Mozart’s fiendish ‘Queen of the Night’ aria

Rachel Willis-Sørensen during a more grounded Richard Strauss performance
Rachel Willis-Sørensen during a more grounded Richard Strauss performance. Picture: Alamy

Rachel Willis-Sørensen is one of the world’s leading sopranos with two acclaimed recent releases on the Sony Classical label. She often appears alongside other star singers of today, including tenor Jonas Kaufmann.

The singer has always dreamed of riding in a hot air balloon, and on a recent birthday trip to the Republic of Türkiye’s Cappadocia region, famed for its spectacular balloon rides, she finally got the opportunity. And in that special moment, some musical inspiration hit.

Rachel Willis-Sørensen, after her soaring serenade
Rachel Willis-Sørensen, after her soaring serenade. Picture: Rachel Willis-Sørensen

When the footage was shared on Instagram, many remarked on the beauty of the singing and the striking scene. “Well if you’re going to sing like that at 5 in the morning it might as well be in a hot air balloon over the skies of Turkey! How fantastic that must have been,” one user said before adding: “You sound incredible.”

Singers often go viral with spontaneous singing in churches, stairwells and places with novel acoustics. This is almost the opposite, singing simply to the sun and sky – almost like a gift to the boundless world below.

What a beautiful sight, and for the others on board the balloons that day, or any high-flying birds, an operatic treat to complete a spectacular scene.