Thursday, September 6, 2007

Luciano Pavarotti, 1935-2007

from San Francisco Opera Programs, November 1967

The opera world lost a legendary performer today. Though Luciano Pavarotti was beloved by opera-lovers everywhere, he had a special relationship with San Francisco. He made his San Francisco Opera debut on November 11, 1967 in the role of Rodolfo in Puccini’s La Bohème and appeared regularly throughout the 1970s.

Martin Mayer, in Grandissimo Pavarotti has written:

“The most significant debut for Pavarotti in the rest of the 1960s was in San Francisco, a Bohème with Freni in 1967. Starting in 1972, it would be in San Francisco that Pavarotti would first perform new roles, and a long succession of them, too: Un Ballo in Maschera, La Favorita, Luisa Miller, Il Trovatore, Turandot (“the first and the only time,” Pavarotti notes dreamily), La Giaconda, and Aïda.”

In the same book, Pavarotti told of his love of San Francisco and the San Francisco Opera.

“Adler [Kurt Adler, the San Francisco Opera's musical director] offered me good conductors, good casts, good productions. The city is beautiful, the opera is first-class, first-class.”

The library’s Audio-Visual Center and many library branches have DVDs, VHS tapes, CDs featuring Pavarotti. In the Art, Music and Recreation Center, we also have long playing records.

The library has a number of biographies of Luciano Pavarotti including two books by the artist himself: Pavarotti: My World (from 1981) and Pavarotti: My Own Story (from 1995).

In our score collection we also have The Pavarotti Collection: Fourteen of the Most Famous Arias and Songs and Popular Italian Songs as performed by Luciano Pavarotti.

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