If you've ever seen Pete Michaels perform live, you know that the highlight is The Little Tenor: A Tribute To Pavarotti.
Pete, who has been singing professionally since 1977, credits a performance by The Three Tenors as the inspiration for this most unique part of his act.
"My Grandmother was a big fan of Enrico Caruso and Mario Lanza, so I had an early appreciation for the Tenor voice. One night, while watching Luciano Pavarotti, I thought it might be fun to do a tribute to this world renowned performer." Fun, it was not!
Pete first had to return to his voice studies, then find a suitable piece of music. His attention turned to Puccini's Nessun Dorma, Pavarotti's signature finale. A MOST difficult aria. He spent months rehearsing, vocalizing the traditional way, with his lips moving. Then, he began singing the aria without moving his lips.
"I wouldn't even consider having the puppet made until I was sure I could sing it with a still lip." And sing it he does. Royally! Luciano gets standing ovations at every show, and is Pete's crowning achievement.
How does Pete feel about the audience response? "When I first start to sing, the audience is quiet. Listening to the music and thinking it's me lip-synching. Then, you can hear them whispering things like, "That's HIM!" or "HE'S singing!" Happens every show. Even those non-opera buffs in the audience love The Little Tenor. He has such universal appeal."
Most recently, The Little Tenor has taken a comedy turn. Before singing La Donna e Mobile, from Rigoletto, he remarks that he in fact has eaten a large bowl of Pasta e' Fagioli before the show. Well, you can only guess what happens during the aria.
And would he ever have liked to meet the real Pavarotti? "Are you kidding? I'd have been honored! I think he'd have gotten a real kick out of it! Could you just picture him and his puppet self singing a duet?" Sadly, with the passing of the Opera Legend, one can only dream about what might have been. God bless you Maestro Pavarotti.
Note: The Little Tenor is performed by SPECIAL REQUEST and at SMOKE FREE VENUES ONLY.
All Content, Materials, Images, Photos & Original Characters Copyright: Pete Michaels