Andrea Bocelli and Roger Federer know a thing or two about global fame.
Bocelli has sold tens of millions of records worldwide, and his soaring tenor remains to this day one of music's most distinctive voices. Federer won 20 major championships in his illustrious tennis career, drawing as much praise for his aesthetic grace as for his athletic skill.
They are the kind of icons with intercontinental cache, and their meeting at a Bocelli concert in Zurich, Switzerland on Monday amounted to something truly special.
Bocelli surprised Federer by inviting him onstage for his final number, "Nessun dorma" from Turandot by Giacomo Puccini ("Let no one sleep" in English). Bocelli then dedicated the aria to Federer, greatly affecting the Swiss great.
Andrea Bocelli dedicated a part of his performance to Roger Federer last night.— The Tennis Letter (@TheTennisLetter) November 21, 2023
“Among us tonight is a living legend, Roger Federer. For me it’s an honor to dedicate the last aria to him, for the emotions he gave everyone”
Roger was moved to tears.
"Among us tonight is a living legend, Roger Federer. For me it’s an honor to dedicate the last aria to him, for the emotions he gave everyone," Bocelli said. "I would like to have him here on stage."
As Bocelli sang, Federer repeatedly wiped away tears—a fitting tribute to Switzerland's greatest athlete in his home country.