You´re living in Germany for some time now and you are studying at music university in Karlsruhe. Are you also learning German ?

Tarja: I already speak it quite well. I don´t have another choice. But let as stay with English. Interviews not in German please (laughs). At music university the lessons are in German, of course. I had German at school for some years, but that wasn´t enough at all. So I have to make up a lot now and take German lessons in addition to my studies.

How long are you planning to study in Karlsruhe?

Tarja: It will take two years. But I really would like to add two more years. My singing teacher is really great. She´s the reason why I decided to come to Karlsruhe. So it would be nice to work with her as long as possible. I also feel quite comfortable in Karlsruhe. It´s a nice litte town and not so crowded. I have a nice flat and can spend time alone if I wish. This is very important for me. I like it to spend time alone. I have enough stress in my life. I only can make plans in short-term and sometimes I just have to spend time with the people I love without having other duties.

What exactly are you studying?

Tarja: Some people think that I sing opera all day long. But that´s not true. I´m studying "Liedgestaltung" (lied arrangements). I sing songs. Also opera, of course, but this is not the main subject.

One of your favourite songs is "Von ewiger Liebe" (from eternal love) by Brahms. Are you able to sing it in German without mistakes ?

Tarja: I can try it, but I don´t remember the beginning. I would have needed some preparation here (laughs).

You do not have to sing it now. It was just a general question.

Tarja: Of course, I can do that. I already performed it on stage. It works also in German.

When did you start over with music ?

Tarja: I started to play piano with five. I strummed on the keyboard at home with one finger. I searched for the different sounds. I then performed at different places, also in kindergarten. At that time I also started singing and I was quite loud, haha.

I remember a scene during the last Wacken Open Air. Our US metal gurus Götz and Boris were standing in first row at the Culprit gig, while you were singing with Nightwish on one of the main stages. You were so loud that they heard you in front of the stage with Culprit. Götz and Boris would have loved to kill you.

Tarja: Really ? I´m very sorry for that.

Let´s talk about another topic. What about your engagement in Nightwish ?

Tarja: The last five years just were too much for me. I already was at a Finnish music school when I started over with Nightwish. It was great to get to know the metal scene. But I lost the connection to classical music in part. I just wasn´t able to balance these two things. And now I would like to take some time for myself again.

Are you going to leave Nightwish ?

Tarja: Of course, I´m happy if Nightwish is successful. I´m proud of it. And that´s why I won´t say now that I´ll leave the band. I don´t want to be the party-pooper. But the timing has to change. And I hope that this is possible. Everything has to be planned in time. I can´t go on tour with Nightwish all of a sudden when I´m in the middle of my studies. The main goal in my life is classical music. That´s for sure.

Smoky clubs, smelly nightliners with no air-condition and the stress in tour will have bad effects on your voice. And this is the worst thing for you, I guess.

Tarja: Exactly. But it is too late for complaining. I should have done this when I started with Nightwish. But it´s right. My vocal chords are also my future. I don´t want to be at places where I ruin my future career. I only have my voice. The go be at places where I ruin my future career. I only have my voice. The guys have their instruments, so for them there´s always an alternative. But for me this is not the case.

Would you miss the metal scene ? The fans worship you.

Tarja:Oh yes, it´s really impressive. Some gigs were unbelievable. I have a lot of respect for the metal fans. I got to know many great people there.

Could you imagine Nightwish with another singer ?

Tarja: Maybe with a male singer (laughs). There have already been rumours that Marco will take over my part. He´s really a good singer. Vielleicht mit einem Mann (lacht). Es gab ja schon Gerüchte, dass Marco meinen Part übernimmt. Er ist ein wirklich guter Sänger. Meanwhile there´re also a lot of good female singers in the metal scene and this is wonderful. We will see....