Blind international opera star Andrea Bocelli has praised his mother for rejecting the advice of doctors to abort him on the grounds that he would be disabled.The Italian tenor, who has sold 70million records worldwide, paid tribute to his mother, Edi, for persevering in her pregnancy.Her self-titled debut album was released on RCA Records on January 30, 2007, and debuted at number two on the Billboard 200, selling 381,000 copies (as of December 2010). Her third album, the holiday-themed Christmas Is the Time to Say I Love You, was released on October 12, 2010.
"The doctors tried to cure me with various operations and they even used leeches but there was nothing that could be done." After he lost his sight Bocelli learnt Braille and used his fingers to run over the raised dots on music sheets so he could also play the piano.But his life was to change for ever in 1993, when at the age of 34, he was spotted by Luciano Pavarotti, who took him on tour and recruited him as his support.Since then he has recorded 13 solo albums and sold more than 70 million copies – earning himself a star place on Hollywood's Walk of Fame and he also performed at the World Cup in South Africa in the summer.He interrupted a TV show to recount a 'little story' to the audience of how a pregnant woman was admitted to hospital with appendicitis.'The doctors had to apply some ice on her stomach and when the treatments ended the doctors suggested that she abort her child,' said Bocelli as he continued to play the piano.'They told her it was the best solution because the baby would be born with some disability.'But the young brave wife decided not to abort, and the child was born,' he said.'That woman was my mother, and I was the child.' He added: 'Maybe I'm partisan, but I can say that it was the right choice and I hope that this could encourage many mothers who sometimes might find themselves in difficult situations but want to save the life of their baby.' Soon after his birth in 1958, Bocelli, 51, was diagnosed to be suffering from congenital glaucoma which made him partially blind.He then lost his vision completely at the age of 12 years after he was hit on the head during a game of football.Bocelli, 52, who was a favourite of the late Queen Mother, will bring his powerful voice to London in November in a concert and spoke in an interview to publicise his reworked autobiography The Music of Silence.He was already suffering from the eye disease congenital glaucoma and then, at the age of 12 he lost his sight completely when he was accidentally hit on the head during a football match and suffered a brain haemorrhage.In his tribute, Bocelli does not explain why doctors recommended an abortion at a time when it was still illegal in Italy. Nor does Bocelli say if his mother underwent surgery for appendicitis or describe the medical condition with which doctors suspected he might be afflicted.The film of Bocelli's tribute to his mother was placed on You Tube this week for the first time by the Whole Life Initiative, an American pro-life group.Although he was a gifted musician and singer, he trained as a lawyer in Pisa and during his studies earned money by singing in piano bars.His first major break came in 1993 when the president of Milan’s Sugar Label music company heard him perform Nessun Dorma and invited him to record it.