The soprano, Svetlana Kotlenko, was born on 6 July 1942 in Kazanlak. She graduated from the State Academy of Music as a student of Christo Brambarov. From 1969-1972 she sang with the Massimo Opera in Palermo, Italy. Returning to Bulgaria in 1972 she joined the Sofia National Opera in 1972 where she sang until her death in 1992. Her debut there was as Turandot with the Sofia National Opera in 1974.
Her European debut was in Paris in 1982 singing the role of Abigaille following the indisposition of Ghena Dimitrova. She achieved immediate success as the Paris newspapers predicted a great career. Additional international appearances took the soprano to Italy, Spain, France, Poland, Russia, Hungary, in addition to other countries in the Eastern Block. Her repertoire included Aida, Adalgisa, Norma, Rosina, Eboli, Tosca, Odabella, Lady Macbeth, Cenerentola, Santuzza, Turandot, Abigaille and roles in the Russian repertoire.
Tragically, Svetlana Kotlenko died unexpectedly in Sofia on 4 July 1992, the day following her performance as Abigaille in Nabucco.
Bellini: Norma Casta diva
Puccini: Turandot In questa reggia
Verdi: Macbeth "Letter scene"