The album’s first single, “Time to Say Goodbye” was a duet with Sarah Brightman that topped charts across Europe, including Germany, where it stayed at the top of the charts for fourteen consecutive weeks, breaking the all-time sales record, with over three million copies sold in the country.
The single went on to sell over twelve million copies worldwide, making it one of the best-selling singles of all time.
Bocelli was made a Grand Officer of the Order of Merit of the Italian Republic in 2006 and, on 2 March 2010, was honoured with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for his contribution to Live Theater.
Bocelli played the role of Romeo in Charles Gounod’s opera Roméo et Juliette, at the Teatro Carlo Felice, for two performances in February 2012. He cancelled a third performance with pharyngitis after suffering vocal strain throughout.
On 22 April, Bocelli gave an open air concert at Yerevan’s Liberty Square, in Armenia, dedicated to the proclamation of Yerevan as the 2012 World Book Capital; he was accompanied by the Armenian Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Marcello Rota. On 19 November, he performed for Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, at the Royal Albert Hall, during the 100th anniversary of the Royal Variety Performance.
A new studio album entitled Passione, featuring duets with Jennifer Lopez and Nelly Furtado, was released on 29 January 2013.
On 7 February, Bocelli was an honorary guest at the 61st Annual National Prayer Breakfast, held at the Washington Hilton, where he performed “Ombra mai fu” and Franz Schubert’s “Ave Maria” in the presence of President Barack Obama, First Lady Michelle Obama, Vice Present Joe Biden, as well as other political leaders.
On 20 February, he performed at the concert in Moscow Kremlin dedicated to 20th anniversary of Gazprom.
On 1 June, Bocelli performed with Plácido Domingo at the Arena di Verona, celebrating the 100th anniversary of the opera festival.
Bocelli is a widely popular singer with a substantial fan base worldwide. However, he is also a polarizing figure, whose voice and performances have been routinely the subject of negative reviews by music critics.
Italian spinto tenor Franco Corelli praised Bocelli’s voice after hearing it for the first time during a master class in 1986, in Turin, and he later gave Bocelli private lessons.
Puerto Rican soprano Ana María Martínez, who regularly performs with Bocelli, said, “More than anything, Andrea has something that is unique in that he brings this light that is always around him. And this purity of heart and beauty of sound just touches the listener. It can’t be described.”
Celine Dion said while introducing him during her Christmas Special for These Are Special Times, in 1998, that “if God would have a singing voice, he must sound a lot like Andrea Bocelli,” and David Foster, a producer of the album, often describes Bocelli’s voice as the most beautiful in the world.
Similarly, Jazz singer, Al Jarreau, who performed with Bocelli on the “Night of the Proms” tour in Europe, in 1995, described him as “the most beautiful voice in the world,” and American talk show host, Oprah Winfrey, commented on her talk show that, “when I hear Andrea sing, I burst into tears.”
After attending Bocelli’s concert at the Hollywood Bowl in 2009, American actress Elizabeth Taylor said, “My mind, my soul were transported by his beauty, his voice, his inner being. God has kissed this man and I thank God for it.”
Taylor had been a passionate fan of Bocelli’s since the beginning of his music career in the mid-1990s. Other fans include, Prince Albert of Monaco, who invited the tenor to sing at his wedding, as well as Sarah, Duchess of York, and actress Isabella Rossellini.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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