Luciano Pavarotti died early this morning in Italy, at home in the town he was born in 71 years ago.
He was famous as one of the Three Tenors, of course, and was probably responsible for causing more normal people to listen to opera than anyone else in the 20th century.
He was also famous for being hugely fat, for being somewhat temperamental and prone to canceling performances … and for raising millions of dollars for charities, for being named a United Nations Messenger for Peace, and for founding a school for young singers in his hometown.
Maybe opera isn’t your “thing.” It’s not generally my “thing” either. But watch this clip of Pavarotti singing his signature song, the beautiful “Nessun Dorma” from Puccini’s “Turandot,” and see if you’re not moved by the incredible power of his voice. The climax, in particular, is amazing.[youtube:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ONUCPKdGcrk]