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Violin prodigy, 17, found dead in Kensington mansion amid warning of 'calvin klein' drug craze

Katya Tsukanova is suspected to have taken a drugs overdose while at a party with her friends in London
Katya Tsukanova is suspected to have taken a drug overdose while at a party with her friends in London Credit: Facebook/Facebook

A teenage violin prodigy was found dead at her father’s Kensington mansion amid warnings of a new “calvin klein” drugs craze.

Katya Tsukanova, 17, one of Britain’s leading young musicians, died from a suspected overdose only days after giving a concert at the Royal Opera House.

On Thursday night her devastated father Igor, a millionaire philanthropist, revealed how he found Katya’s body at the family home after she returned from partying with friends.

“My daughter was so happy, and she had such a bright future,” Mr Tsukanov told the Telegraph.

“She was such a smart girl, and she made one bad choice. What can we parents do? The children will do what they want anyway, and they never tell you the truth.”

Katya Tsukanova, one of Britain's leading young musicians, was found dead at home on June 18 Credit: Katya Tsukanova/Katya Tsukanova

The exact cause of Katya’s death will be determined at an inquest later this year. A source close to the young girl claimed that she may have taken a so-called “calvin klein”, a deadly mixture of cocaine and the party drug ketamine, which is also used to tranquillise horses.

“The ‘calvin klein’ was the new thing among Katya and her friends. Not just them though, it’s everywhere,” the source said. 

“These wealthy kids don’t drink as much as young people used to, but they do hard drugs instead. It’s so dangerous.”

The teenager was on a music scholarship at Wycombe Abbey, a £13,000-per-term independent girls' boarding school in Buckinghamshire. Her death is the second tragedy to hit the school after 15-year-old Iris Goldsmith, daughter of the millionaire financier Ben Goldsmith, died in a quad bike accident last weekend.

Born in London in 2002, Katya was a musical prodigy who gave her first public performance at the age of five. Later she was accepted to the Royal College of Music, and gave solo concerts in Russia, Japan, Germany, Eastern Europe and at Carnegie Hall in New York. Last summer the teenager was declared the best young musician at the prestigious Suoni dal Golfo Music Festival in Lerici, Italy. At the time of her death she had taken a year off school before her A-Levels to tour and perform.

Her father, Igor Tsukanov, is a millionaire former Russian banker who moved to London during the 1990s with his wife Natasha to become art collectors and philanthropists.

Speaking at his Kensington mansion, Mr Tsukanov, 57, said he knew his daughter’s friends did drugs, but believed that she only drank alcohol.

“My daughter was so happy,” he said. 

“She had just performed at the Royal Opera House and she was planning for the future. She even had a board on her bedroom wall with all her concerts perfectly laid out. Then one morning I came in, and she was lying dead on the floor.

“I don’t know if she took ketamine or cocaine, or a mix, but perhaps it makes sense.

“Sometimes she would have parties in my house and I found her friends unconscious. I had to call the ambulance. I never understood why they were like that. It wasn’t from drinking.

“But I want to make clear that I don’t blame anyone for Katya’s death.”

Police were called to Katya's home when her body was found on the morning of June 18, but declared the death non-suspicious. More than 100 people, including Katya’s friends and former teachers, attended her funeral at The Russian Orthodox Cathedral of the Dormition of the Mother of God and All Saints in London earlier this month. A concert in her memory will take place in Lerici, Italy, on August 11.

Rhiannon Wilkinson, headmistress at Wycombe Abbey, said: “Katya was a lovely, popular, outgoing, well respected and incredibly talented young woman. Her warm personality will be hugely missed by everyone in the Wycombe Abbey community.”