Music is as integral to me as my own DNA. My life has become a continual soundtrack, with music underscoring the most powerful and even the most banal moments of my life.
In a fit at the bookstore one day, I bought all my favourite composers' biographies: Schubert, Massenet, Wolf. I've still not had a chance to read them; it breaks my heart. But when you travel so much, you just can't take that many books with you.
My dad's in banking, my mum manages the American branch of a Swiss vitamin company; they're really busy, but they still come to all my premieres.
From my perspective, music allows me to escape from the world of what is happening right in front of me... to the world of my thoughts, my dreams, my hopes and ideas - for the world, for my own life, for the day, even for the moment.
We can all afford to do a little soul-searching about the choices we make and the way we live our lives, but sometimes searching one's soul doesn't provide the answers we seek.
I know there are lots of regional accents in England, but I can't tell them apart and I'm not really aware of class. I don't pay any attention to those boundaries. I'm a California girl.
I don't feel I'm fighting to reach this huge audience; it just happens. I go on stage before the audience arrives and look out to this vast empty house. There's something therapeutic about taking in the ring where you'll perform.
What I see as specially English is the charm - everyone is so polite. Being restrained is part of the charm. And I love the sense of humour - it takes me back to Australia. The English are great at making fun of themselves. They're so self-effacing.
I sang with a voice that was natural, and I liked the way I produced that sound. I thought of my other friends, that they were singing and dancing, but they didn't have this. I was special.
I think of myself as an Olympian. I have had a dream since I was a very small child. And because I have parents without whom I couldn't have realised that dream.