Elena Xanthoudakis was born in Melbourne and lives permanently in Glasgow. She first studied astrophysics and then decided to dedicate her life to opera. The Australian and international press recognized the 29-year-old woman from Greece as a rising star. “Maria Callas is one of my idols”, states the soprano. She first won recognition when she was awarded the Maria Callas International Grand Prix (Oratorio- Lied) in Athens in 2003. She has also participated in the Musical Olympus International Festival in Saint Petersburg, Russia. During the Festival, a parade of the most prominent artists took place. She is the only Australian to receive this award. She has received over 80 first place rankings and recently placed 3rd in the Operalia Contest in 2008, founded by Placido Domingo. Elena Xanthoudakis will perform the role of Euridice at the Opera of Haydn in “The Soul of the Philosopher”. It will be first presented in Australia by the “Pinchgut Opera” of Sydney.