I am far from being an opera buff and those that know me best are surprised to know that I have a dislike for opera.
Yet one would be an imbecile to not acknowledge the impact Pavarotti had on the music scene. For several decades he was the tenor. It was an event to hear him perform in operatic plays despite his supposed difficulties with acting. His concerts where the main ticket in town. No ifs ands or buts. Even his recent personal problems became front page tabloid fodder.
Nobody in my immediate family are big opera fans. Not even my dad who had a very keen and broad ear for music. But when “The Three Tenors” gained prominence nearly twenty years ago he was vociferously singing their praises. I long ago lost count of the number of times he watched the trio of Pavarotti, Carreras, and Domingo on TV. I could never figure out why he was so enthralled by them and to this day it’s still a mystery. Yet he absolutely appreciated them. His enthusiasm taught me a valuable lesson: be appreciative and receptive of all things even if you don’t like them.
The following is a live concert clip of Pavarotti performing with legendary Brazilian singer Caetano Veloso. Pavarotti’s versatility is on display in his fantastic interpretation of “Manhã da Carnaval” (video link):