Though the Italian cathedral from which opera legend Andrea Bocelli delivered an Easter Day performance was physically empty due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, millions of fans, from all around the globe, enjoyed the touching concert from the comfort of home.
Bocelli livestreamed the aptly named “Music for Hope” show free of charge on his YouTube channel, to encourage both his fellow Italians and the billions of others who are fighting to overcome the COVID-19 crisis.
Additionally, the venue from which the 61-year-old showcased his talents was symbolic of Italy’s battle against the novel coronavirus; the Duomo di Milano is prominently located in Milan, which is the capital of Lombardy, the Italian region that’s been hit hardest by COVID-19.
At the time of this writing, the five-track performance had garnered nearly 30 million YouTube views, as well as over 750,000 likes.
Andrea Bocelli opened the show with “Panis Angelicus” and followed with a moving rendition of “Ave Maria.” “Sancta Maria” and “Domine Deus” came next, respectively. To conclude the concert, Bocelli proceeded outside and, complemented by a gorgeous view of the Milan Cathedral’s exterior, sang “Amazing Grace.”
Bocelli and his team also posted hymn sheets for the works performed during the concert, so that fans can follow and sing along.
On social media, prominent figures and fans alike praised Bocelli’s effort. One Twitter user succinctly wrote: “Andrea Bocelli made today better.” Another individual tweeted: “Beautiful voice for an ugly time.”
And finally, a different fan yet said: “So poignant, gave me hope in these terrible times.”
Ultra-successful singer-songwriter Celine Dion praised Bocelli and linked to his performance, writing: “your voice brings hope and comfort to all of us during these difficult times.”
Andrea Bocelli and his namesake foundation are currently sponsoring a coronavirus-relief fundraiser, contributions from which will help to provide doctors, nurses, and first responders with medical equipment and protective gear.