The list of stars who will not be singing at Donald J. Trump’s inauguration grew on Tuesday, when officials confirmed that the Italian tenor Andrea Bocelli, who had been rumored to perform, would not be appearing after all.
There had been a certain logic to the idea that Mr. Bocelli might sing at the inauguration next month of Mr. Trump, who is known to be a fan of his. Like the president-elect, Mr. Bocelli was dismissed by many elite critics but has still managed to gain a large following through a combination of popular appeal, media savvy and a knack for drawing crowds. His crossover mix of classical and pop has helped him sell more than 80 million recordings and sell out large arenas.
The New York Post’s gossip column, Page Six, reported on Tuesday that Mr. Bocelli had decided not to perform because he feared a backlash from opponents of Mr. Trump and his policies. The chairman of Mr. Trump’s inaugural committee, Thomas J. Barrack Jr., said in an interview on CNBC that it was Mr. Bocelli who had originally made a tentative offer to sing, and Mr. Trump who had declined.
“The Bocellis came to him and said, ‘Look, if it would be helpful to you, if you would like us to perform, we would consider it,’” said Mr. Barrack, who noted that Mr. Trump had once let Mr. Bocelli use one of his airplanes. “And Donald said: ‘You don’t need to. We’re not in that kind of a framework. Thanks very much for the offer. You’re my friend. You are always welcome at the White House.’”
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SOURCE: NY Times, Michael Cooper