A few years ago, I fell in love with the song “Dare To Live,” performed by Andrea Bocelli and Laura Pausini at the tenor’s concert at Teatro del Silenzio in Lajatico, a region of Tuscany, Italy in July 2007.

A few things struck me about this performance and the story behind it. (video below)

For one, Teatro del Silenzio (Theatre of Silence), the location of the performance, is an Italian open air amphitheatre, built with funds mostly by Andrea himself.

The venue hosts a concert by Mr. Bocelli, the honorary president, one day in July. The balance of the year, the hillside is silent.

Andrea’s love for his hometown, music, and the environment is undeniable.

Second, although it’s Bocelli’s event, he puts the gracious and gawjuss Pausini at the center of attention.

He proudly awaits downstage, smiling, holding the space for her to stroll, catlike, with violins in the background, as she makes a grand entrance in her silky, flowing, tiger striped dress.

Then again, at the two minute mark, the Italian tenor surprises the pop star from Emilia-Romagna Italy, by going down on one knee, keeping Pausini in the limelight.

Notice how Laura touches her heart? She’s awestruck, swimming in a wave of emotion as Andrea, blind since the age of 12, sings to her as if she’s the only one in the Theatre of Silence.

Mr. Bocelli is demonstrating one of the five practices of exemplary leadership: Encourage the Heart.

Great leaders understand, to accomplish extraordinary things takes a concerted effort from a group of people, not just a star of one.

The masterful leader gives everyone else on the playbill the standing O while inconspicuously standing tall, applauding with exuberance in the wings.

Sounds easy enough, not easy to do.


The last observation I have about the song are the lyrics:

Dare to live until the very last
Dare to live forget about the past

What part of your life is on hold?

What did you say you’d do last week? Last month? Last year? For some reason, that -to do- is still on the shelf collecting dust.

Perhaps you’re a master of procrastination?

Enough is enough.

I’m issuing you a challenge. Yup, I’m daring you. Check that. I’m double dog daring you to dare to live.

Dare to:

    • take that trip
    • start that business
    • take those piano lessons
    • make that call
    • dance
    • laugh
    • be a thoughtful leader
    • be silly
    • cry
    • get focused on your business
    • say thank you
    • give to a good cause
    • have that difficult conversation
    • step to the edge 
    • love
    • give them a hug
    • give without reciprocity in mind
    • act goofy
    • stop living the lie
    • discover a career that lights you up!
    • dive into wellness

“Be daring, be different, be impractical;
be anything that will assert integrity
of purpose and imaginative vision
against the play-it-safers.” 
 Cecil Beaton


Photo courtesy of Brett Jordan.

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