Nessun Dorma

Album: Turandot (1926)
Charted: 2
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Songfacts®:

  • "Nessun Dorma" is probably the best-known Italian song throughout the English-speaking world, having been popularized by the great tenor Luciano Pavarotti; after it was used as a TV theme song for the 1990 soccer world cup, it reached #2 on the UK singles chart, the highest position ever for a classical song.
  • In Pucinni's Turandot, "Nessun Dorma" is sung by Calaf (the unknown prince). The title translates as "None Shall Sleep," but although it has been recorded in English, the Italian version is usually preferred.

    The opera, which has a libretto by Giuseppe Adami and Renato Simoni, saw its first public performance on April 25, 1926. Pucinni did not live to see it; he died in November 1924, shortly after being diagnosed with throat cancer.
  • "Nessun Dorma" was published as a standalone piece several times from the 1990s, including, according to the British Library catalogue, as "World Cup Italia '90 theme: as featured on TV: Puccini's Nessun dorma!" This is an easy-play version for recorder, flute, violin or clarinet/tenor saxophone and piano, arranged by Barrie Carson Turner. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Alexander Baron - London, England, for above 3
  • In 2013, Billy Joel added "Nessun Dorma" to his setlist, although he didn't sing it. Joel had a singer named Mike DelGuidice perform it as an intro to "Scenes From An Italian Restaurant."

Comments: 2

  • Ross from Grand Forks, NdThanks Alexander for posting a classical song; my favourites are Italian love songs and few are listed on this site. Maybe we can change that...lol. Ross, Grand Forks, ND
  • Sarah from Austin, TxI was told by my brother in law that "Nessun Dorma" was chosen as the World Cup theme because the time zones insured most of the people watching would have to stay up late (or all night) to watch the games. Now, that could be a crock, but hey it sounds good to me.
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