"Con te partirò
" (literally meaning "With you I will leave") is an Italian operatic pop
song written by Francesco Sartori
(music) and Lucio Quarantotto (lyrics). It was first sung by Andrea Bocelli
at the 1995 San Remo Festival
and recorded on his album of the same year, Bocelli
, and is considered Bocelli's signature song
. The song achieved widespread success with a second version sung partly in English, pairing Bocelli with soprano Sarah Brightman
, released as "Time to Say Goodbye"
. It is Bocelli's only #1 hit under both versions. Since its release, the song has spawned numerous other versions and been performed by numerous other singers. Notable alternate versions include "Por ti volaré"
, a Spanish version with significantly modified lyrics, and "I Will Go with You (Con te partirò)"
, a dance
remix performed by Donna Summer
. In 2001, Journey
guitarist Neal Schon
released a solo album, Voices, which features an instrumental version of the song. In 2008 Danish pop duo The Loft released their single "Kiss You Goodbye"
' based on "Con te partirò"
/"Time to Say Goodbye"
and containing samples from the originals.
The song's original single release by Polydor Records
was not commercially successful in Italy, and received little radio airplay
there. Elsewhere, however, it was a massive hit. In France and Switzerland, the single topped the charts for 6 weeks, earning a triple Gold sales award. In Belgium, it became the biggest hit of all time, spending 12 weeks at No. 1.
In Germany, East West Records, in conjunction with Polydor, marketed a version of "Con Te Partiro", retitled "Time to Say Goodbye", and with some lyrics changes, as the theme song for the final match of boxer Henry Maske (then the light-heavyweight champion of the International Boxing Federation), having seen previous success when Vangelis's "Conquest of Paradise" was also promoted via Maske's fights. "Time to Say Goodbye" was also turned into a duet with Sarah Brightman, who had performed "A Question of Honour" for one of Maske's previous fights. German producer Frank Peterson, who has worked with Brightman since 1991, opted to give the song an English title, rather than the German title "Mit Dir Werde Ich Fortgehen". Recording of the song took place at Peterson's Nemo Studio, in Hamburg.
The match took place on November 23, 1996, pitting Maske against American Virgil Hill, and drew a television broadcast audience of over 21 million. Bocelli and Brightman performed the song to open the match, and it was used again during Maske's exit.
By December, the "Time to Say Goodbye" single, released on East West, had reached number one on the German singles chart, with sales estimated at 40000-60000 per day and projected for at least one million by the end of the year. Both singers' respective albums also received a boost in sales. Airplay on German radio stations such as Norddeutscher Rundfunk was well received by listeners. By February of the following year, the single had broken the all-time sales record in Germany with 1.65 million sales, and would eventually reach over 3 million copies sold. It is also the best-selling single in Belgium.
"Time to Say Goodbye" reached number two on the UK Singles Chart upon its release there in May 1997, and was certified gold. It remained in the top 30 for another two months, helped by steady radio airplay on BBC Radio 2, which was overtaking Radio 1 in popularity with an MOR-oriented playlist.
The duet was included on Brightman's 1997 album Timeless, re-titled as Time to Say Goodbye in the U.S. with the song itself moved to the start of the album. Brightman has also recorded a solo version, which was released on the duet single as well as later albums.
A spin-off single to Time to Say Goodbye called Time to Say Hello has been rumoured to be in the works.
Notable performances and associations
Although the song is most associated with sporting events, it has featured frequently in film and television and is a favourite concert item.
"Time to Say Goodbye" has been played or performed at a number of subsequent sporting events:
- Sung on the eve of Sunday (final day) of the 2008 Hong Kong Sevens rugby tournament by a local soprano and tenor.
- Played at the conclusion of the 2000 World Series.
- Sung live at the Ashes Cricket Test in Sydney in January 2007 by Sean Ruane, to mark the retirements of long-serving Australian players Justin Langer, Glenn McGrath and Shane Warne.
- Funeral of Hansie Cronje, the most successful captain of the South African Cricket Team
- Sung by Maria Lucia at the closing ceremony of the 2007 Special Olympics World Summer Games.
- Played at the final Irish rugby and soccer internationals to be held at the current Lansdowne Road before the stadium was demolished.
- The 2006 HERO'S Light-Heavyweight Champion, Yoshihiro Akiyama, uses this song as his entrance theme.
- Used as the outro music at the end of the Tostitos BCS National Championship 2007 game, marking the end of the BCS bowl games on FOX for the year.
- Some opposing teams would play this song when pitcher Jose Lima would leave the game.
Concerts and other uses
- One of the signature songs of Filipino singer Lani Misalucha.
- As part of the 2000 program - entitled "Red" - of the Boston Crusaders Drum and Bugle Corps (listed as "Time to say Goodbye"). The corps sang the lyrics (unamplified) in Italian in addition to playing on their respective instruments at various points in the work. With this program, Crusaders achieved their highest placement ever (5th) at the Drum Corps International World Championships.
- The Glassmen Drum and Bugle Corps have also played "Time to Say Goodbye" for a number of years as an encore piece and it has become a staple of the corps off-field repertoire.
- Used in the advertisements by the Bellagio Hotel in Las Vegas during the late 1990s when the hotel opened. It is also played during the Fountains of Bellagio water show in front of the hotel. On many days, the hotel plays it for a fountain show around noon when most guests are checking out.
- The song was recently used as the theme for the emotional final audio montage for Sydney based Australian talk radio icon John Laws on November 30, 2007. During the playback of memorable calls from listeners, a dance mix of the backing music was played in the background. This collection included calls from several Australian prime ministers, actor Russell Crowe and several other high profile personalities from around the world.
- The tune is also played in the famous Sentosa show in Singapore - Songs of the Sea .
- The tune is also played at the funeral of Sir John Compton, a former Prime Minister of St. Lucia
- The tune was also used in a match between Bayern Munich and Germany. The match was played as a testimony game for Goalkeeping legend Oliver Kahn who served as keeper for Bayern for 14 years. The song began playing in the 77th minute of the game as it was then that Oliver Kahn was being substituted out for new no 1 keeper Michael Rensing.