The Met wasn't auditioning him for a lead role in, say, Rigoletto or Turandot, though. According to an report from the Associated Press, the Italian tenor, who is friends with Met general manager Peter Gelb, was just running through a few art songs to find out how singing in the house felt. Elena Park, the house's assistant manager for editorial and creative content, told the AP that, while the company has no plans to cast Bocelli in an opera, he could certainly give a non-subscription recital with piano there.
Such a concert would likely attract a big crowd. Bocelli has legions of fans who are attracted by both his singing and his life story — he lost his eyesight at age 12 but went on to complete law school before developing a singing career — and the tenor's recordings are top sellers in their genre. (Four of the top ten titles on last week's Billboard classical crossover chart are his.)
Bocelli's admirers don't tend to be opera mavens, however. His occasional appearances in fully-staged opera and on complete opera recordings (he has made half a dozen of them) have received a chilly reception from classical music critics and hardcore voice fans.