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On Comparison & Expectation


I believe it is the fate of all people to be hindered by comparison, and that this is not necessarily a bad thing. We are compared to our mothers and fathers from the moment of our birth and those comparisons place upon us our very first expectations. The expectation that we shall be like our parents, whether in our physicality or our mentality, is often quickly done away with once we begin to develop our sense of individuality in either of those realms. It seems, though, that it has been fairly well documented that those who are continually pressured to live as prescribed by any external force - that is to say those forces outside of the self - from and beyond their youth tend to exit those prescribed forms of living with certain immutable traumas.


This is, of course, not to say that I would think for a moment that I have been personally traumatised by such a flattering comparison! It is merely to surmise that expectations placed upon any person may hinder their self actualisation, and in doing so, to consider that the inverse must therefore also be true.


Within my own personal experience I can say that the comparative expectation placed upon me by a number of people has driven me towards self-realisation; by not taking the whole thing too seriously I feel I’ve gotten the positivity from this comparison without allowing it to become a hindrance. When people make remarks in such a vein it should not be considered gospel, for allowing oneself to live and abide by any remark of another will obstruct the self. Instead these should be considered complementary, sudden outbursts of friendliness if you would. If a person places an expectation upon you; it is most useful to accept as an act of trust that you will make the correct choices for yourself.


Pavarotti and I are and shall always be two different people. I can learn from his outlook and the results of his career, but our journies began in different places, in different eras, as different individuals. I hope to honour his memory in the same way that I hope to honour any singer that has touched my heart. Those people who leave imprints upon our lives, whether they know it or not, are not to be idolised but perhaps admired from a distance; not to be emulated but instead to be considered.

12 comments

12 Comments


Gabrielle Ridgway
Gabrielle Ridgway
May 18, 2021

Once A Legend Is Created It Is Very Difficult To Dislodge It From It's Pedestal-And Who Would Want To - As Long As It Is Not Always The Bar By Which Everything Is Measured! - Great Art Is Great Art- But It's Appreciation Is Also Subjective!- Who Knows Why One Artist And Not Another So Touches One's Heart & Soul!- For Me -ItWill Always Be The VOICE OF THE MAESTRO!

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That is true. I only got into opera from my mom. I've listen to all the greats, the three tenors, Jose Carreras. Placido Domingo and Luciano Pavarotti. Jonathan keeps getting better and better. I REALLY feel we are just beginning to hear the Maestro. And he shares it with ALL of us!! He is so humble, so well grounded.

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I don't if you remember me. It was when you asked for songs for your new album. I asked for E lucevan le Stelle. You response was, "that's a hard one". You did the song wonderfully. I listen to that song on your album, ALL the time! It's my favorite.

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Gabrielle Ridgway
Gabrielle Ridgway
May 18, 2021
Replying to

Puccini & The Maestro - A Match Made In Heaven! (And It Probably Was! Puccini just had to wait a little!)

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If you haven't been gifted with the voice which you have so beautifully refined through the years, you would have definitely been a cherished writer, a thought provoker. Well done with the response, Jonathan.

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gatelock
gatelock
Apr 07, 2020

Well stated!

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Judy Orta-locati
Judy Orta-locati
Feb 26, 2020

Thank you for your reply Maestro. I enjoy getting to know you through your story, your performances, your interviews and your posts.

I especially love your reflection that a friendly outburst can be perceived as an action of trust.

This is a very encouraging statement and I love to read it along with the other insights you share in this heart felt reply.

Thank you for allowing us to be friends. It is thrilling for me to not only be able to follow your incredible journey, but to be able to get to know you as a genuine fellow human.

From my family to yours. From my community to yours, Dear Jonathan, we wish you well and only the best.

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