Luciano Pavarotti left half his estate to his second wife and half to his four daughters, including three from his first marriage, an attorney said Tuesday.
In the final months of his yearlong battle with pancreatic cancer, Pavarotti made two wills, said attorney Giorgio Bernini, who represents the singer’s second wife. One dated June 13 divides up his assets according to Italian law, with half going to his wife, Nicoletta Mantovani, and half to his children.
The second, dated July 29, elaborates on the first and concerns the tenor’s U.S. holdings, which he entrusted to Mantovani, Bernini said.
Interest in Pavarotti’s will has mounted in the days since his Sept. 6 death at age 71 amid reports that his three adult daughters from his first marriage were squabbling with Mantovani, and that there had been a “crisis” in their marriage.
The reports prompted Pavarotti’s three adult daughters to write a letter, which one of them read on television last week, denouncing speculation about “purported bickering, phantasmagoric wealth, last wills and testaments that we don’t know anything about.”
“Luciano Pavarotti now has his chance to speak out and, contrary to media reports and rumors, he did not change his will to the detriment of his second wife,” Pavarotti’s manager, Terri Robson, said in an e-mail to The Associated Press.
The wills were made public this week after Mantovani’s lawyers formally requested that they be opened. The Associated Press confirmed the contents of the documents in interviews with Mantovani’s lawyer.
Bernini said that according to the June 13 will, half of Pavarotti’s estate will go to Mantovani, and half will go to the daughters, each of whom get an equal, one-quarter share.
“The Maestro’s concern has always been not to treat his daughters differently,” Bernini said.
Two of Pavarotti’s friends will get $693,350 each “for their affection and loyal assistance,” Bernini said in a telephone interview, quoting from the will. Italian news reports have identified the two as Pavarotti’s assistant, Edwin Tinoco and his companion Veronica Zeggio.
The lawyer declined to give details on the overall value of Pavarotti’s estate. It also wasn’t clear how Pavarotti’s commercial interests, including royalties from sales of his music, have been handled.
Italian media reports have valued the estate at some $275 million; Bernini said such figures were exaggerated and that the tenor had no hidden “treasure” as some reports have also suggested.
Bernini said the second testament was essentially an addendum to the first, entrusting to Mantovani the management of three apartments in New York City’s Hampshire House on Central Park South. The properties, which are included in her basic 50 percent share of the estate, are to be put into a trust managed by Mantovani.
Mantovani is currently staying in one of the apartments with their 4-year-old daughter, Alice, Robson said.