11 July 2019, The Tablet

Power of the moment: Ron Howard's documentary on Pavarotti

Power of the moment: Ron Howard's documentary on Pavarotti

Superstar tenor Luciano Pavarotti


Director: Ron Howard

Luciano Pavarotti’s talent emerged in his parish choir, and his life was bound up with Catholicism and the Church. But it was in an Italianate version of the Graham Greene life story: and some of us will probably relate to that.

The greatest tenor of the twentieth century was “happily married” to Adua Veroni, who is interviewed in Ron Howard’s documentary, for almost 40 years. But things weren’t all they seemed. The Pavarottis were not happy. Luciano had an affair, probably more than one affair, and eventually the couple, parents of three daughters, divorced.

Three years later, in 2003, the larger-than-life singer, who turned opera into global rock and roll with a rollicking concert in Rome in 1990 with Plácido Domingo and José Carreras, married again. His second wife, Nicoletta Mantovani – fun, thoughtful – spoke briefly at the press screening I attended.

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