WATCH: Trump Tells Italian Prime Minister Pavarotti Is a ‘Great Friend.’ Pavarotti Died 10 Years Ago.


Pavarotti's Family Didn't Think So

As he so often does, President Donald Trump embellished a written speech with some personal anecdotes Thursday afternoon, but this time they turned out to be rather embarrassing. In a joint press conference with the Prime Minister of Italy, Paolo Gentiloni, the U.S. President heralded his "great friend" Luciano Pavarotti.

Luciano Pavarotti died in 2007.

"Through the ages your country has been a beacon of artistic and scientific achievement," Trump told Prime Minister Gentiloni. "That continues today."

"From Venice to Florence to Verdi to Pavarotti – friend of mine," President Trump said. "Great friend of mine," he concluded.

Trump should remember the late Italian operatic tenor. Last summer during the race for the White House the Trump campaign frequently used Pavarotti's rendition of the Puccini's aria "Nessun Dorma" ("None Shall Sleep") without permission. Pavarotti's family sent a letter requesting they stop using his music.

The family's statement was not a generic request, but rather, an attack on Trump's character. It said that "the values of brotherhood and solidarity which Luciano Pavarotti expressed throughout the course of his artistic career are entirely incompatible with the worldview offered by the candidate Donald Trump."

So much for being great friends.

Mic's Andrew Joyce writes:

There are other reasons to doubt the supposed friendship between Pavarotti and Trump. One account from a 2002 report in the Guardian claims that Pavarotti once gave such a lackluster performance at one of Trump's Atlantic City casinos that Trump demanded Pavarotti return his fee for the event. 

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Image: Screenshot via Washington Post