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From Football to Films, Seven Fascinating Facts About Andrea Bocelli You Probably Didn’t Know

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Andrea Bocelli, one of the most celebrated tenors in modern history, will perform in Abu Dhabi on November 24, promising yet another unmissable experience for music lovers in the UAE capital. The world-renowned six-time Grammy-nominated artist will head to Etihad Park for a special one-off concert, marking his fifth appearance in Abu Dhabi.

While the Italian is recognised worldwide for his pitch-perfect performances and is sure to enthral his audience at the Flash Entertainment-produced show, his off-stage achievements, accomplishments, and accolades often fly under the radar. Here, we have compiled a list of seven brief – and sometimes intriguing – facts about Andrea Bocelli.

  1. A man for the big occasion, Bocelli has performed for four US presidents, the British Royal Family, three popes, and several prime ministers. He is the only artist to twice take part in the prestigious US National Prayer Breakfast in the presence of a sitting president. Barack Obama and numerous Heads of State watched him in both 2013 and 2016.
  2. On December 11, 2017, the opera legend was invited to the NASDAQ Stock Market in New York for the famous “ringing of the bell” ceremony that marks the beginning of trading on the global stock exchange. The visit was part of the 10-year anniversary celebrations of the Andrea Bocelli Foundation, which details its mission as “empowering people and communities”.
  • In 2017, The Music of Silence, a film based on Andrea Bocelli’s 1999 autobiography of the same name, was released. The Michael Radford-directed film starred Spanish actor Antonio Banderas.
  • In May 2021, while shooting “The Journey” documentary, the most adored tenor in the world rode more than 350 kilometres on horseback from Rome to his village of Lajatico, in Tuscany. A trip that started with him meeting the Pope and receiving his blessing at St Peter’s Basilica.
  • A section of beach at Jesolo on Italy’s Adriatic coast was named after Bocelli on August 11, 2003 as a gesture of appreciation. As a lover of the great outdoors and particularly the sea, this represented a fitting way for Italians to appreciate their compatriot.
  • Bocelli has performed at several major sporting events, including the Olympic Games, FIFA World Cup, European Championships, F1 grand prix, and even an NBA All-Star game. His show in Abu Dhabi will come just weeks after the UAE capital hosts elite basketball for the first time with the NBA Abu Dhabi Games 2022 pitting 2021 champions Milwaukee Bucks and Atlanta Hawks against each other at Etihad Arena.
  • The operatic tenor is a keen football fan and has supported Inter Milan his entire life. His passion for the sport and his boyhood club has remained intact as he continues to listen to games on the radio to this day.

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