Thursday, September 6, 2007

In memory of Pavarotti

Luciano Pavarotti, the great Italian tenor, died today of cancer. In his memory, we present here his final public performance, from the opening ceremonies of the Turin Olympics in 2006, where he performed the aria "Nessun Dorma" from the Puccini opera "Turandot". (It also happens to be my favorite opera aria.)

For a little background on this opera and how this aria fits into the grand, poetic scheme of things, here is a nice, short rundown:


Nessun dorma! Nessun dorma!
Tu pure, o, Principessa,
nella tua fredda stanza,
guardi le stelle
che tremano d'amore
e di speranza.

Ma’il mio mistero e chiuso in me,
il no me mio nessun sapra!
No, no, sulla tua bocca lo diro
quando la luce splendera!

Ed il mio bacio sciogliera il silenzio
che ti fa mia!

(Il nome suo nessun sapra!...
e noi dovrem, ahime, morir!)

Dilegua, o notte!
Tramontate, stelle!
Tramontate, stelle!
All'alba vincero!
vincero, vincero!

None must sleep! None must sleep!
And you, too, Princess,
in your cold room,
gaze at the stars
which tremble with love
and hope!

But my mystery is locked within me,
no-one shall know my name!
No, no, I shall say it as my mouth
meets yours when the dawn is breaking!

And my kiss will break the silence
which makes you mine!

(No-one shall know his name,
and we, alas, shall die!)

Vanish, o night!
Fade, stars!
At dawn I shall win

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