PAVAROTTI: My Own Story by Luciano with William Wright Pavarotti


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Pavarotti fans--who've probably read the stories in Time and Newsweek, seen the 60 Minutes profile, and watched a handful of opera-intermission interviews--will find little that's new in this bland potpourri: Pavarotti recollections and opinions, interviews or statements from friends and colleagues, and some life-with-Pavarotti segments by co-author Wright. ""My childhood was ideal,"" begins Luciano--and from there on it's all agreeably cheerful as he recounts his studies, the singing competition that won him a La Bohème performance (a top agent was there), and the Dublin appearance that led to Covent Garden, Joan Sutherland, and San Francisco acclaim. The only slight flies in the ointment: being so much in the critical public eye, the seemingly slow acceptance at the Met (he had the flu at his debut), separations from family, his desire to lose weight, and a scary plane crash that lifted him out of a depression. Luciano thanks Sutherland for sharing her diaphragm-support technique; his most completely satisfying role is Riccardo in Ballo; he likes tennis and riding; he tells how he feels moment by moment through a typical performance day (using L'Elisir d'Amore as the example). And, between the Pavarotti chats, there are words from Sutherland & Bonynge, Mirella Freni, wife Adua, plus LP's manager, secretary, teacher, accompanist, etc. Unfortunately, however, the Pavarotti personality isn't something that comes across on the printed page; readers will probably respond more to Luciano's picture on the cover than anything written here. Okay for those fans who haven't heard it all, then, but Pavarotti's life story--unlike Beverly Sills' or even Tito Gobbi's (My Life, 1980)--hasn't any of the punch of his high C's.

Pub Date: March 13th, 1981
Publisher: Doubleday