The blind superstar had reportedly been tapped to take the stage at the Washington, D.C. event in January (17), and was even rumoured to be planning a duet with teenage opera singer Jackie Evancho, who will be belting out the National Anthem.

It was subsequently claimed Bocelli, a longtime friend of the real estate mogul-turned-reality star, was planning to withdraw from the event due to a backlash from Trump's opponents online, but now a spokesperson for the Republican politician has revealed it was the President-elect himself who turned down the tenor's offer to perform.

The chairman of Mr. Trump's inaugural committee, Thomas J. Barrack Jr., told CNBC, "The Bocellis came to him and said, 'Look, if it would be helpful to you, if you would like us to perform, we would consider it.'

"And Donald said: 'You don't need to. We're not in that kind of a framework. Thanks very much for the offer. You're my friend. You are always welcome at the White House.'"

Trump's representatives have yet to announce a headliner for the 20 January (17) inauguration.