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Best known as the female vocalist for Finnish gothic/symphonic metal act Nightwish, Tarja (full name Tarja Soile Susanna Turunen) was born on August 17, 1977, in Kitee, Finland. Her prowess as a soprano landed her a place studying classical voice at the Sibelius Academy in Kuopio, where fellow student Tuomas Holopainen took on Tarja as vocalist for his musical project, which was to be christened Nightwish in 1996. Tarja continued to pursue solo interests during her time recording and touring with Nightwish, including a solo in a 1999 rock ballet, a 2002 tour of South America, and a 2004 Christmas single, entitled "Yhden Enkelin Unelma" (One Angel's Dream). In 2005, Tarja was asked (via "open letter") to leave Nightwish, the rest of the band citing financial and personal concerns. A public display of he-said/she-said followed, and Tarja became a solo artist full-time. After her forced departure, Tarja made some live appearances, as well as an appearance on an album of her brother's work before beginning work on an album of her own. October 2007 saw the release of that first solo album, My Winter Storm, which was released on Spinefarm Records. In 2009 she began work on her second solo effort, taking time out to record a duet with Klaus Meine of the Scorpions, "The Good Die Young," which appeared on the veteran group's 2010 album Sting in the Tail. In the fall of 2010, Tarja's second solo album, What Lies Beneath, was released; an ambitious effort combining classical and metal elements, Tarja supported the release with extensive touring, including a series of German dates opening for Alice Cooper. In 2013, Tarja's third solo effort, Colours in the Dark, was released; the album was a commercial success, rising to the top ten of the album charts in the Czech Republic, Finland, Germany, Poland, Russia, and the UK. Tarja also made a guest appearance on the EP Paradise (What About Us?) by the Dutch group Within Temptation.