Happy Birthday Maestro Puccini

I have Giacomo Puccini to thank for my, some say obsessive, love of opera.  The first time I heard Renata Tebaldi and Carlo Bergonzi sing the love duet from La Boheme I was hooked.  I was 13 at the time and haven't looked back since.

His ability to tear at your heart strings with his artistry remains pretty much unparalleled. I consider him to be one of the greatest composers for the human voice and the fact that most of his operas are among the most performed in the repertoire is testament to his amazing talent.

So as a tribute to this most inspirational of composers on the anniversary of his birth would of course have to be the finale of Act 1 of La Boheme, sung by Renata Tebaldi and Jussi Bjorling.  Check out Renata's facial expressions while Bjorling sings Che Gelida Manina, they are worth the  price of admission alone.