A LUCIANO Pavarotti lookalike called time on his career after delivering the ‘performance of a lifetime’ at the home of business tycoon Richard Branson.
Colin Miller, 62, of Gough Side, Burton, who works for Virgin Trains, had been invited to the billionaire’s 120-acre Oxfordshire home– along with 5,000 other Virgin employees – for the party which included trapeze artists, fire-eaters and a fairground.
He told the Mail he was asked to perform a song after news got around he was considering calling a halt to his career which has spanned 23 years.
“I said I would love to do it,” he said.
“I have never been nervous and even though there were going to be important guests and staff I wasn’t nervous.
“I got on stage and I gave the performance of a lifetime.
“I was exhausted and drained by the end but it was what I expected.
“I saw Richard in the distance and he gave me a quick wave.”
Mr Miller, who will now shave his beard for charity in an attempt to be less recognisable, said it was not a hard decision to make to stop performing.
Demand has slowed since Pavarotti’s death in 2007, he said, and following the birth of his fifth grandchild in July – on the same day as HRH Prince George – Mr Miller now aims to spend more time with his family.
He said: “In the next month the beard is coming off so if a charity wants to get on board they can.
“I have been doing more charity work which I will continue to do but it will take a backseat.
“I have had a wonderful career and I have done it all. Nothing can top what I have done already so I thought I would go out while I’m at the top.”
Mr Miller said the most memorable moments in his career included appearing on lottery adverts in Portugal and performing in Seoul, South Korea, four weeks after the death of his mother.
He said: “I did not want to cancel it. It was the hardest thing I have had to do in my life.”