Russian soprano Anna Netrebko distances herself from Putin

Renowned Russian opera singer Anna Netrebko has sought to distance herself from Vladimir Putin, expressing “regret” that any allegiance had been “misinterpreted”.

n a statement to the PA news agency, the soprano said she had only met the Russian president “a handful of times”, amid criticism over her failure to condemn the invasion of Ukraine.

The 50-year-old said: “I am not a member of any political party, nor am I allied with any leader of Russia.


Anna Netrebko with her Female Artist of the Year Award at the Classical Brit Awards 2008 (Yui Mok/PA)

“I acknowledge and regret that past actions or statements of mine could have been misinterpreted.”

She said she had met Mr Putin “a handful of times”, mostly at awards ceremonies.

She said: “I have otherwise never received any financial support from the Russian government, and live and am a tax resident in Austria.

“I love my homeland of Russia and only seek peace and unity through my art.”

Netrebko previously withdrew from engagements at the Metropolitan Opera rather than reconsidering her support for Mr Putin, it was reported, costing the company one of its top singers and best box-office draws.

She said she will return to performing later in the year.

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