Massimo -- a star ... Salvatore, -- the pur[i]st ... Alessandro -- "I like it here."
Wonderful. Why does it seem like all truth worth having comes in threes ...
Had I been so inspired, I might say that this ancient tale might of lost some other tidbits in translation, and maybe there is a better idiom for it.
For instance, the three maybe weren't opera singers, but bluesmen. Aikido is the moving blues. ("He that perceives the truth with resignation....")
. Muddy Waters, Robert Johnson, Tommy Johnson, Howlin' Wolf , John Lee Hooker, Eric Clapton. The real blues don't come from technique. Ain't never the same, ain't never different neither. Everybody knows you learn the REAL blues from that man(?) with those dark eyes waitin' for us all down at the crossroads (juji?). Some seek him out, but sooner or later we all come to the crossroads and meet him. The prince of this earth. (Don't the Japanese call him Sarutahiko?). (Izu, Mizu -- beauty born of the cleansed filth of the underworld.) Job was the first bluesman, and look who he learned it from.
If all of them dies, everyone they ever taught or heard them dies, and every sheet of music and every tape or scratchy 'ole phonograph dies too, but the blues don't die. There is still that man always waiting down by the crossroads we all must come to eventually, singing the blues for any to hear.
But -- if ever once you hear it true -- it will possess your soul from that time on. You will die still trying to coax more of that growling deep sad sweetness from the bottom of your being, always knowing you failed in some important way. You could never recreate on your own what that crossroads man makes so easy and cuts you to the core.
Those who try to go their own way are safe, sad and fruitless. The blues possess you; you become the instrument. Those that do that instead, remain sad -- the condition of this world and him that runs it, but they also touch beauty, and deeper truth on the dark road to salvation. Don't nobody practice budo but come to understand that it's a dance with the devil ... but that's a dance nobody gets to bow out -- or to decline when offered -- so best to learn the steps sooner than later.