PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- Thomas Jefferson University's newly minted doctors were treated to a commencement address on Wednesday that was part inspiration, part performance.
World-renowned tenor Andrea Bocelli spoke, and sang, to the graduates.
For a moment, the Kimmel Center's Verizon hall felt like an intimate Bocelli concert.
6abc's Alicia Vitarelli spoke exclusively with him about this moment, where one of his childhood dreams came true.
"Today is a very special day, honestly, it has been an incredible experience," he said.
That's because on Wednesday, the Italian tenor earned a new title: Honorary Doctor of Medical Humanities and Sciences.
"I promise I will never give an injection," he told the room of new MDs, who laughed.
He also told them a story about how he wanted to be a doctor when he was a child.
"It's really true," Bocelli said. "I was in the hospital for a long time for eye problems. The doctors were like heroes."
But life, he says, would take a different, more musical, course.
"I understood already, at the time, that music was my destiny," Bocelli says.
As many learned firsthand at the ceremony, the maestro is as gracious as he is generous with his talents.
"I say that I have never worked in my life," he noted, despite a storied career with six Grammy Award nominations and more than 90 million records sold.
"It's true because I always did what I like to do. I'm very lucky," he added.
Bocelli also has a great love for Philadelphia.
"They really love music," he says. "They come to the concert with the mind completely free. They are great."
Bocelli returns to Philadelphia for a concert at the Wells Fargo Center on December 7.