US & Canada

Texas pianist finds daughters dead at estranged wife's home

Vadym Kholodenko performs in Fort Worth, Texas, in 2013 Image copyright AP
Image caption Vadym Kholodenko, seen here in 2013, is well known concert pianist in Texas

Police in the US state of Texas are investigating after a world-renowned concert pianist found his two daughters dead in the home of his estranged wife.

Vadym Kholodenko called emergency services on Thursday after finding his wife Sofya Tsygankova, in an "extreme state of distress", as well as the bodies of his two children.

Ms Tsygankova was found with stab wounds and faces a mental health exam.

Police would not say whether Ms Tsygankova was a suspect.

Five-year-old Nika and 1-year-old Michela were found in their beds in Benbrook, a suburb of Fort Worth, with no visible signs of trauma. A post-mortem examination will determine the cause of death.

Ms Tsygankova, who also performed as a concert pianist, is being treated at local hospital. Police would not say whether her wounds were self-inflicted.

Mr Kholodenko, a Ukrainian-born musician, is not a suspect and is co-operating with the investigation, authorities said.

Image copyright AP
Image caption The couple lived in Moscow before moving to the US

Benbrook police Commander David Babcock said police were not looking for other suspects.

"I do not believe the neighbourhood should be overly concerned for their safety at this point," Mr Babcock said.

Mr Kholodenko won the prestigious Van Cliburn International Piano Competition in Fort Worth in 2013 and has performed with a number of major orchestras.

He married the Russian-born Ms Tsygankova in 2010. They moved to Fort Worth from Moscow in 2014.

Police had been called to the Fort Worth home twice in 2014, but police would not say why.

The couple divorced in November, according to court records.

The children lived with their mother, but Mr Kholodenko would routinely pick up the girls from the home in the mornings, police said.

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