First, Bobby Farrell, front man of the musical group Boney M, died there while on tour. The UK Telegraph reports:
Farrell, 61, had performed in St Petersburg on Wednesday but had complained of breathing problems before and after his show, according to his agent John Seine. Staff at his hotel discovered him after he failed to answer a wake-up call.
Coincidentally, the date of his death, December 29, was the same as Grigori Rasputin, the infamous Russian mystic who was an adviser of the Russian Tsar Nicholas II and his wife Alexandra, who died in 1916. Rasputin however met a more brutal demise, as he was poisoned, shot four teams and thrown in the river before he eventually drowned.
Rasputin was also the name of a 1978 Boney M hit [here's the video], reaching number two in the British charts.
-- snip --
Boney M was the first Western music group invited by a Soviet leader, Leonid Brezhnev, to perform in the Soviet Union. A Soviet military plane flew the performers from London to Moscow, where they sang for an audience of 2,700 Russians in Red Square.
Okay, one coincidence is easy to accept. But now the coincidences multiply.
The evening before Farrell and Rasputin died, Anna Chapman, the protege of Vladimir Putin, Russia's current mad monk and St. Petersburg's favorite son [Putin and Rasputin, is there a little similarity there?] gave her first interview to Russian state-run television. She talked about her hopes to have a TV or movie career, and was presented with a pet lion.
See for yourself:
Now here's the second Rasputin tie-in. Rasputin had a daughter, Maria, who grew up in St. Petersburg and aspired to be an entertainer. After the Revolution she became a lion tamer, toured the United States, and settled down in Los Angeles. She died in a bungalow near the Hollywood Freeway.
I'll admit the destiny behind all of this is still a bit murky. Maybe it will take a vodka or two before the course of the future becomes clear.
H/T to The Snake's Mommy, and a happy new year!