Nana Mouskouri, the world's best-selling female recording artist, is to hold two concerts at the Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall in Taipei, beginning tomorrow. Nana, as she is affectionately called by her fans around the world, will take to the stage a final time in Taiwan on her Farewell World Tour 2005/2006. The Taipei Times spoke by phone to the chanteuse mid-morning last week in Singapore.
TT: How has your Asian trip been so far?
NM: Well, tomorrow we are going to have the first concert [in Singapore] and we'll be here for another three or four days. I was busy having interviews with local newspapers and television stations. The reception here has been just
wonderful and I am getting myself ready for the concert.
TT: I heard that when you were here in Taipei in March 2001 many of your fans were so moved by your performance they cried.
NM: Yes, I have very good memories of the concerts in Taipei four years ago. As time goes by I am no longer as young as I used to be, but I never lose my enthusiasm for music. Music is my energy and through it I am able to communicate with people.
TT: Why did you choose now to bid farewell to the musical world?
NM: Well, my idea is that since I've been singing for so many years and can still sing well, it would be nice for me to go around and say, "Thank you very much," to my fans for their support. Another thing is that the world is changing very fast and you never know what is going to happen next. So, I decided to leave the stage with my dignity and with a good
impression. I think it's time.
TT: I expect the two scheduled concerts in Taipei are going to be very emotional. I bet there will be tears.
NM: For all the reasons that everybody knows, my life will pass away someday and somehow. In life, nothing lasts forever. I do not want to be in a situation when I can no longer sing and force myself to disappear all of a sudden. That would leave people wondering what happened to me. In other words, this is an elegant way to say goodbye.
TT: I find the song I'll Remember You very touching and it would work perfectly for the occasion.
NM: You know, this was originally a Bob Dylan song and I've used it occasionally in the past, but we changed the lyrics a little bit to suit the situation. It's the same thing with Frank Sinatra's My Way. It's originally a French song, which I've known for years. I never recorded the song before because I did not believe it was the right moment to do it. The song should be sung to mean, at one point, you are at the end of something. But I recorded it this time along with the song I'll Remember You especially for this tour. So, this is the story behind it. I chose the songs to mean something.
TT: Can you tell us about your expected
repertoire for Taipei?
NM: I am preparing some new songs and a new program for this trip. The concert is going to be different but naturally I'll do some of the [audience's] favorites as well. The new program will tell the story of the high points of my life. At the beginning there will be video clips to show the important stages of my career. In this way, the audience will have a clear idea about what kind of person I was and who I am today.
TT: And how many different languages will you be singing in?
NM: I'll sing in Greek of course. You know I am a Greek and above all I love Greek songs. Besides, I'll sing in English, French and