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Thursday, September 6, 2007

His First Love Was Soccer: Maestro Luciano Pavarotti Died Today After A Long Struggle With Pancreatic Cancer

Maestro Luciano Pavarotti, 71.
Courtesy of Wikipedia.
Please click on the image to
hear il Maestro's last performance
of Puccini's "Nessun Dorma," in Torino.

He was born in Modena, and early this morning, died in his hometown. Luciano Pavorotti, who came from humble roots, became perhaps the most well-known operatic star of his generation. But singing was not his first love; calcio was. But perhaps his greatest gift was to cast aside the aspiration of boys from around the world, and to leave us with a more significant legacy.

Upon graduation from high school, he wanted to be a professional footballer, or calciatore. His parents suggested that he find more suitable and stable employment. For a few years, he was a school teacher, and then sold insurance. Also at this time, the Maestro's passion and unique talent for music was developed. He wanted to sing professionally, and his father made a deal with him. If he did not succeed by the age of 30, Luciano would return to teaching and/or a normal life of employment. As history has shown us, it was the correct path to take. Mr. Pavarotti brought opera to millions of new fans, which mostly was due to his love of soccer.

Beginning in 1990, along with fellow tenors (and futbol fans) Jose' Carreras and Placido Domingo, the "Three Tenors" performed in Rome on the eve of the World Cup final. They would perform again two more times at the World Cups of 1994 in Los Angeles, and the 1998 World Cup in Paris, respectively. These performances had a world-wide audience of the hundreds of millions, and even the traditional fans of opera had to give the trio their due. They expanded the reach of classical music into ears that would have never heard such beautiful sounds.

For all of his life, Maestro Pavarotti was an ardent supporter of his hometown team, Modena F.C. Along with Juventus FC. Here is a tribute that appeared on the Modena F.C. team home page:

'Grazie Maestro':

''Caro Maestro - ricambiamo il Tuo 'Forza Modena' con un immenso ringraziamento per il Tuo amore verso la nostra citta' ed i suoi colori. Il Modena F.C. partecipa al dolore dei familiari e si unisce al cordoglio dei modenesi per la scomparsa del nostro grande Artista''.

'Thank you, Maestro':

"Dear Maestro-- we exchange your 'Forza Modena' with an immense gratitude for Your love towards our city and our colors. Modena Football Club shares in the pain of your loved ones and unites in the grief of all the people of Modena for the loss of our great Artist."

And from the Juventus site:

"Simbolo dell’Italia e della musica nel mondo, il Maestro era anche un appassionato di calcio e non ha mai nascosto la sua passione per la Juventus."

"Symbol of Italy and the music of the world, the Maestro also was a passionate soccer fan and never hid his passion for Juventus."

He sang as he lived. With a passion from his heart, and a perfect voice that was heard around the world. "As long as you have music, you are never alone." Luciano Pavarotti

Maestro, sei il piu bravo di tutti.

Throughout his long career, he often performed for humanitarian causes around the world. Here were some of his appearances with other famous performers.

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