Photo of Luciano Pavarotti Luciano Pavarotti

Known for his larger-than-life persona and extraordinary range, legendary opera singer Luciano Pavarotti was born Oct. 12, 1935, in Modena, Italy, and spent much of his youth listening to records of celebrated Italian tenors such as Beniamino Gigli and Enrico Caruso.

Pavarotti became an internationally renowned star after touring with celebrated soprano Joan Sutherland and performing in major opera houses all over the world, eventually appearing in more than 20 productions taped for television between 1978 and 1994. His famous roles include Rodolfo in Giacomo Puccini's "La Bohème," Alfredo Germont in Giuseppe Verdi's "La Traviata" and Mario Cavaradossi in Puccini's "Tosca."

But Pavarotti is most often associated with his rendition of "Nessun Dorma" -- an aria that would become his signature song -- from Puccini's "Turandot." Pavarotti died of pancreatic cancer Sept. 6, 2007.

Luciano Pavarotti in Puccini: La Boheme (Tianquiao Theatre)

Puccini: La Boheme (Tianquiao Theatre)

1986 NR

Giacomo Puccini's most beloved opera -- the inspiration for the modern Broadway hit "Rent" -- blossoms in a memorable production in Beijing's Tianquiao Theatre. This performance was filmed during the Genoa Opera Company's historic tour of the People's Republic of China in 1986. World-renowned tenor Luciano Pavarotti sings the role of the poet Rodolfo, with Fiamma Izzo D'Amico performing the part of his tragic love interest, Mimi.

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