Thursday, September 06, 2007

Sing for Pavarotti


It is not very often that you read about celebrities and you are overcome by sadness. Most of the time you read about them having spent a huge amount of time and money on doing something stupid and costly. Of course you would only read this in a “scandalous newspaper in a format which is smaller than the Telegraph”…

I have spent a lot of time with various celebrities from film, television and the music scene, I would agree with those comments some people have read about, but one celebrity whose heart and mind which was won over on me years ago is facing difficulties, namely Luciano Pavarotti…

I worked with the Big man himself on a coupe of large events and concerts and found him most likeable. A person with whom you could sit down and discuss his trade, being music, and he would listen to what you had to say. Years ago I was invited by a record company to join them to discuss a particular concert and being the “new kid on the block” among people who had spent a lifetime in opera and classical music I was a bit nervous about the meeting. The meeting took place in his restaurant in Modena and after a hearty meal we sat down to discuss the “programme”, to which the record company were committing to, when the “Maestro” arrived at the table. An argument between our company and the Italian broadcaster was brewing at the top floor and I was asked to go and mediate. Considering my skills in classical music and Italian I decided that I should do what I do best…be Swedish and go for it but be firm and put the law down early…needless to say that I won and they all agreed.

I returned to table in the restaurant, which was closed other people at the time, well what did you expect the Big Swede was in town…
When I sat down I was “tested” by the Maestro who asked me about the “running order” and if agreed…I glanced over the sheet and I asked “What seems to be the problem?”

Pavarotti answered that he felt that the record company did not like the Lucia song he had added in the schedule to which I answered it is a lovely tune and that everyone in Scandinavia will know and like it…to which a record executive said “I do not know the tune…”

At this point I decided that Swedish singing would be the best medicine and I started to sing the tune of Santa Lucia…only to ensure that my record company bosses would know what was talking about. This was the moment when Pavarotti struck a cord with me started singing the tune with me to the amazement of everyone around the table…

How come a Swedish person who works in events and music knows the words and music the Santa Lucia? Well at that moment Pavarotti stopped singing looked at me and said “That is not the song”…

I froze at my seat looked him in the eye scrabbling for words when he suddenly said…I don’t know where you found this Swedish guy but I will work with him as he is the only one who has ever challenged me to sing…

So we did the concert “Pavarotti and Friends” and I am writing this because I am reading that the Big Man is not doing to well in hospital…and I wish him all the best…

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