Thursday, September 6, 2007

The Passing of a Great Voice - Good Bye Luciano!

I'm sad today. I was at work and pulled up a news page and the lead story was the death of the great Italian tenor Luciano Pavarotti at the age of 71. Out loud I was saying "Oh no..." My co-workers were looking at me oddly until I explained. Their reaction was "Oh, how sad," but I don't know that anyone was as saddened as I was by the news.

I've been a fan of Pavarotti since I was in high school. I think I saw him on a Live from Lincoln Center special on PBS back in the early 1980s. Now, I like all kinds of music but I've never been into opera all that much and certainly wasn't back then and neither were any of my family members. But I heard this big bear of a man sing with an impressive yet lyrical tenor voice that took my breath away. He took my breath away.

I watched interviews with him on 60 minutes and other news shows and enjoyed him as much when he was just being Luciano as I did when he was on stage as Pavarotti. He was funny, had a wonderful self-deprecating sense of humor, and a genuine lust for life.

Later on when he joined forces with Placido Domingo and Jose Carreras I tuned in to every program to hear "The Three Tenors." I love all three, but Luciano was always my favorite. I'm not sure why because all three men have truly phenomenal voices. There was just something magnetic about Pavarotti that drew the eye...and the ear. What a voice!

I'll miss your voice. I'll miss your high Cs. I'll miss your wonderful smile. Rest in Peace and sing well in your new venue.

For your listening and viewing pleasure, check out this YouTube piece above featuring Luciano Pavarotti performing in Paris while he sings his signature song, Nessun Dorma from Puccini's opera, Turandot. His performance is magnificent.

Bravo, Luciano!

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