GRAZIE MILLE TO GIOVANNA FOR TRANSLATING THIS FOR US!! 🙂
Anyone who has been to an Il Volo live concert knows that the guys are NOT stuffy, straight-laced, performers. The description I hear most about their stage presence, besides “thrilling,” is “warm.” In addition to great music sung by spectacular voices, a large part of the fun of an Il Volo concert is the guys’ non-stop joking, ribbing and “fuoco incrociato” (cross fire) on stage. Daniela gave us a lovely and letter-perfect overview of the magnificent music in her post on 6 June, 2021, never missing a single guest name, movie name or song title. I have the privilege of sharing with you the other fun part of the show – the “Chiacchiere Sul Palco,” the stage chatter. Sometimes it was pensive and touching, sometimes it was immensely funny. I didn’t translate everything verbatim, but my narrative is mostly in the order of the action on stage, so you can use it to follow much of the repartee if you don’t understand the Italian.
The “chiacchiere” didn’t start on the stage. Daniela showed and translated much of the Anteprima filmed backstage right before the show opening. Marco Giallini, former movie actor turned Italian TV comedian and TV host, was supposed to be getting the Il Volo guys ready for their big entrance by encouraging them on their opening with “Ecstasy of Gold” from the Good, the Bad and the Ugly. Piero comes on screen warming up, with Gian telling him not to force it. Ignazio limps on complaining of his shoes, which Marco thinks must be wood. Marco doesn’t help; he only manages to ask the guys if they’re nervous. Then the guys were too busy getting Marco ready, to get themselves ready. While adjusting Marco’s tie, Ignazio chastises him “Put yourself together better, this is an important event.” Gianluca, predictably, had to fix Marco’s hair. (Ignazio will razz Gianluca about his own hair later on). Piero does the last-minute run back to smooth Marco’s whiskers. It didn’t look like Marco got to do much for the guys at all.
After the opening number, Ignazio very gratefully expressed that after a year and a half of silence, their guests of honor were really the entire live audience.
Gianluca explained that this was the highest moment of their career, and it was such a responsibility that his legs were shaking. Ignazio quips that his legs are shaking, too, but in his case it’s because his shoes are a little too tight. He reassures the audience he can handle it, though. Piero, straight-faced, complains that even after a year and a half not singing in public, Ignazio hasn’t changed a bit. The rest of Piero’s remarks are to thank the Morricone family and Maestro Andrea.
The guys often talk about how inexperienced they were when they started as 15-year-olds. They decided to share what happened their first time rehearsing the theme from C’era Una Volta inAmerica with Maestro Ennio Morricone at Piazza del Popolo in Rome. Ignazio asks who made “la brutta figura” (the lousy impression/bad mistake) that time. Gian admits it was him, so he’ll finish the story. At that age, he had no training and no idea how to respond to the conductor, who is the only one who can tell them when to come in, or even how to address him. When the Maestro pointed at Gianluca to lead off, he didn’t make a sound. Confused, he turned to the other guys and the Maestro, calling him the informal “tu, instead of the formal “lei.”” (No Maestro is never addressed as “tu” in front of the orchestra or audience). The Maestro, ever the forgiving father, told them, “It’s OK guys, just do what you do, I’ll handle it.” I noticed that as he told the last few lines of the story, Gianluca lapsed into Abruzzese. It may have been an embarrassing memory.
Piero, to rub it in to Gianluca, then (loudly and properly) asks the current Maestro (Andrea) Morricone, “Maestro, we’re ready. Can you kick us off now?”
Ignazio announces that now that they are grown up they don’t goof up like that anymore. (You should always check out the eyes on the other two, when he says things like that).
When they introduce “Nessun Dorma,” Ignazio explains they sang it during a different tribute (to the Three Tenors) in a different place (Florence), adding that some of the folks in tonight’s audience were probably there. When Ignazio gets no audience response, Piero throws in, “No. I guess no one at all was there.” After they gave a breathtaking performance, Piero got visibly shaken by the deafening applause, and had to explain that it was very emotional to hear that welcome response again after a year and a half of silence.
It’s at this point that we start to understand exactly how extensive their responsibility was. Piero mentions that he hasn’t slept in 40 days, since it was decided that the three of them would host and help plan the entire show. Piero explains he couldn’t sleep because of Ignazio. He was worried about managing the behavior of the usual crazy one. If you follow Instagram, you know that Ignazio is a self-confessed “rompiscatole” (pain-in-the-rear prankster).
As Piero mentioned, it was decided that the Il Volo guys would not just be the stars, but also do the music selection and be hosts. That meant choosing songs, scripting the stage act, interacting live with the guest stars, and coordinating with other artistic media. On top of that, it was being filmed live. That’s why you keep hearing Ignazio make comments throughout the concert about “il bello della diretta,” meaning “the beauty of what happens when you film live.” Even more, this was not a concert; it was a multi-media tribute. As you watch, you will notice that in addition to the 100-piece orchestra, choral backup choir, and powerful vocals, there were film clips, ballet choreography, still photo backdrops, and narrative readings. Our guys had to mesh these with the parts they scripted and performed themselves. Major responsibility, yes, and they carried it off beautifully.
Ignazio promises he could behave and feel better if he had “una piciottedda, una fimminedda.” Daniela explained these were Sicilian for a young girl or young lady. Gian decides Ignazio means he needs a muse. That’s when they bring on actress Laura Chiatti. She says she’s flattered because she’s never been a muse. Piero corrects her that she’s a muse for him and Gian, but for Ignazio she’s “una piciotta, una fimminedda.”
Ignazio brings her to his side, explaining, “We rehearsed where to have you stand. These other two told me, ‘Ignazio, you stand next to Laura.’ You see, those two have a fear of heights (paura dell’altezza).” In Italian, “altezza” doesn’t mean only high places. It also refers to a person’s physical height. Igna was intimating that Piero and Gian are afraid to stand near tall women. (But we know they are not!) Laura admits that without her heels, her height wouldn’t be a problem for anybody. Igna tells her he wants her to leave them on. Laura helps them introduce “Se Telefonando” by playing around with Ignazio using the three notes it’s known for.
Afterwards, Gian recounts that because they have been travelling since they were 15 years old, there were times when they got on stage and totally forgot where they were. Piero claims that Ignazio was the worst of the three. Ignazio explains that once when they arrived in Vienna, he shouted out to the crowd, “I love Germany”, but of course they were in Austria. Gian insists Ignazio also said “Good evening, Berlin,” when they were in Vienna. Ignazio argues that it was the exhaustion. Piero fires back to Igna, “No, that’s just you. Exhaustion has nothing to do with it.” Then Piero underscores Ignazio’s forgetfulness even more, saying “Let me tell you what he’s like: When we go on stage wearing socks, he forgets his socks. Then he forgets the bowtie. Then he forgets the cufflinks.”
As Ignazio slinks away in ignominy, Gian interrupts Piero, “Excuse me, but he has this incredible voice.” Piero goes after the escaping Igna calling “But without him… but without him…” and wins Ignazio back.
Piero explains that Ennio Morricone arranged the most requested song at all Il Volo concerts. When they get ready to sing “Il Mondo,” they get their places mixed up and Piero is headed downstage towards the audience. Ignazio is fussing that Piero has to be on stage to sing this next song, unless he intends to sing it from up in the balcony. (I have actually seen Piero do that for Puccini arias). This is another place that Ignazio remarks on “il bello della diretta.” (live filming). When they sort it out, Gian promises they’ll come down into the audience later. Read Daniela’s post to hear how gracious Piero can be when he’s down in the crowd.
After Riccardo Cocciante performs with the guys and announces he’s had 50 years of career, Gian says he hopes Il Volo will be able to say that someday, too.
Marco Giallini finally joins the guys on stage. In preparation for the next love song, he asks the guys about their first kiss. Igna tells a story most of you already know. He remembers being four years old and crawling under the sofa to hide from his first kiss. Marco asks Gianluca about his first kiss. Gian says he doesn’t know, he hasn’t had one yet. Marco encourages him, “There’s still time.” When he turns to Piero, Gianluca says it’s better if Piero doesn’t answer this one. (I don’t know what that was about). Gianluca also asks Marco if they can call him “Zio”, Uncle Marco.
The guys bring on Salvatore Cascio who played little Salvatore “Toto” Di Vita in “Cinema Paradiso” in 1988. (My late Uncle Salvatore was also Toto). Igna describes Toto as “The little boy (“picciuteddu”) who has grown up a lot.” Igna tells him he wanted to speak to him on stage in Sicilian but he’s not allowed, so, they will visit backstage later. Note though, that Ignazio had been throwing Sicilian around on stage all evening, anyway. I don’t know what put Ignazio in that mood, but he may have been remembering and honoring his late father in some way. Before Toto leaves, Piero remarks how many people he made cry during that film, but Toto adds, “and made them laugh, too.”
Nina Zilli joins them for “Metti, Una Sera a Cena.” After pianist Raphael Gualazzi says his goodbyes, Ignazio brings Nina forward saying “Look at all this splendor.” She flirts back with “You’re not looking bad yourself.”
After the break, Piero starts the next “battuta” (gag) by saying “When we meet people on the street they often say, ‘I remember you when you were this little.’” Ignazio gibes that Gian and Piero may once have been that little, but he was never that little. Piero snipes “Let’s look at a picture of Ignazio when he was little, so darling, so fascinating, so attractive.” They show the pudgy, round-faced little guy he was. Gianluca points at today’s Igna, saying “What a miracle. Look at how handsome he is now.” Ignazio rebuts Piero with, “Ok, do you want to talk about what you were like: ‘pafutello’ chubby.” We see a chubby Piero with the wild ears and chopped hair. Gian is waving at the current Piero and calling out “Miracle 2.0!” Then they show Gianluca as a child. Same smooth face, same smoldering eyes, same daring stare. Piero is yelling “Always the same. Same pose, even. Peter Pan. Never even a wrinkle.” Gian says he can still do that look, does a spin and comes around in the same pose.
Marco Giallini shares a narrative about the lives of Sacco and Vanzetti before the guys sing “Here’s to You”. Afterwards, he tells a story about Ennio Morricone having a face-off with Franco Zeffirelli who rejected “E Più Ti Penso” for one of his films, and chose a Diana Ross song instead. Marco always manages to slip in F-bombs and funny Italian obscenities into his stories, and of course does it here. That doesn’t mean I’m going to repeat or translate them.
Ok. Next skit. After “E Più Ti Penso,” Ignazio uses one of their old lead-ins that “We are three different personalities, with three different tastes in music, and three different heights. But, of course while we’re sitting down right now you can’t see that.” You can almost tell what’s coming. Piero reacts with “Yes, three different personalities, and three different musical tastes. But the three different heights, Non c’entrava niente.” (Had nothing to do with anything). Igna insists, “Yes it does. For Gianluca to look as tall as me, he had to start styling his hair up really high (“allungare il ciuffo”) like he does.” Gian points out that he had his hair styled lower this evening. (He did).
Igna explains how their different tastes led them to start performing solos. Gian remarks that it’s hard to be alone for a solo after 12 years of performing nearly everything together. He also recounts being distracted by music even as a schoolboy constantly wearing earphones. It struck me that he introduced Elton John’s “Your Song” by saying it was 51 years old. (It was a pop hit when I was in high school, and that can’t be 51 years ago). It was easy to figure out where Mama Eleanora Ginoble was in the audience, because after dedicating the song to her, Gian kept pointing her out. Afterwards. Gian came back to the other guys asking how he did, saying he values their opinion. Piero congratulated him on how beautiful it was, then told him next time he sings it to turn around and look at the beautiful ballet choreography behind him. So, we can expect to hear this one again.
When it’s time for the next solo, there’s another Sicilian argument. Piero stops Igna who’s moving forward with a microphone in hand, saying he’s going to the solo area downstage to get ready. Piero reminds him, “Always the same story. This was the agreement: him (Gian), then me, then you.” Igna then insists he was just putting the microphone on the stand. (Right). Gian tells Piero “OK, let’s hear what you got, Il Torrucciddu.” You can tell my two paesanos are still teaching him Sicilian.
Piero introduces his accompanist, Andrea Griminelli, by saying that he has seen and heard him accompany Luciano Pavarotti, Sting and other powerful artists. After Piero’s heart-stopping “No Puede Ser,” Ignazio tells him he sounded better than ever. Then Ignazio shifts gears, saying we all know what we lived through this past year: separations, distance, missing people, losing people. He adds if you have a love far away, you can call them near again. He adds there were great losses, yet great satisfactions. Most touching, he dedicates the concert to all those who at the start of this year, were no longer with us, adding “Our thoughts are with them who are now up there” (pointing to heaven).
Then Ignazio goes to the solo mike stand and says, “OK. My turn. I really feel alone over here.” Piero assures him he’s not alone and reminds him to do a mini-interview with his coming guest. Ignazio introduces his saxophonist, 8-year-old Julian. Ignazio described him as a big and little surprise. Big, because he’s insanely talented. Little, because he’s of short stature. Gian interjects “Like me and Piero.” Daniela gave us a literal translation of the little mini-interview Ignazio did with Julian after the solo of “Listen.”
After the solo, Marco narrates the story of “Mission”, and how Ennio Morricone came to compose for the protagonist, Padre Gabriel’s, oboe. Gian tells us that the film allowed us a peek into places paradisical and un-contaminated. Piero adds that that we need to protect our planet and preserve the beauty of these places. Ignazio explains that it’s not just because two of them are Sicilians that he wants to thank the ecological rescue team that has restored one of the most magnificent beaches in Lampedusa, one of the most beautiful there is. They restored it from a state of degradation to a place now magical, especially because of the indigenous turtles, the Caretta Caretta. Ignazio is always Ignazio, so he quips that if you’re not familiar with these turtles, they are friends of his. Then he mis-reads “nitificare” on his prompter, and also misreads the text on the migrations, settling for “They’re there every season.” Gian is giggling “See, what happens filming live.” It also happens that June 5 was World Ecology Day. Piero provides an Italian text number 45593, for donations to support eco-restoration, then has trouble reading his own prompter. Ignazio is gibing, “Now we can’t even read anymore.”
Of course, Gianluca starts in with, “Well now that you have mentioned Sicily, I need to mention Abruzzo, and greet all the Abruzzese watching.” Piero throws out, “I was actually asking myself, how is it Gian still hasn’t mentioned his home, yet.” (Because we all know Gianluca does that at every show.)
When Laura returns after “Volare,” she tells the guys that in her role as muse, she requests a favor that they cannot refuse her. She asks them to sing “Un Amore Così Grande.” Igna offers it from the bottom of his heart “corazon” in Spanish, but Gian has him say it in Portuguese “curação.”
After describing their appreciation for American music and artists, they try to introduce “My Way.” Piero explains that they’re turning their back to the audience so they can talk on camera to those at home. Ignazio is trying to pontificate and have a suspenseful introduction with a flourish. You can see that Piero, losing patience, blurts out the title too early. The other two chastise him, “You ruined it.” “Don’t interrupt.” You’re too intense, calm down.” That’s why Piero finally runs up to the camera face first and announces “My Way” really hard.
This one is followed by Andrea Morricone’s s new composition, “Il Colore dell’Amore”. Then the guys take turns “conducting” the audience for “Libiamo de Liete Calici.”
When Marco gets ready to leave the stage for the last time, Ignazio thanks him for being a pillar of strength for Il Volo, because he believed in them, supported them, and taught them how to relax and take all the mistakes in stride when recording live.
Before singing “Conradiana,” Piero dedicated the concert to Ignazio’s late father, Vito. There are no words to add to Daniela’s impressions of how moved and emotional the three of them were. I can only echo Piero’s promise that he knew Vito was watching from “up there.”
Afterwards, what grabbed the Italian media reviewers besides the spectacular vocals and professionally polished delivery? They latched on to Ignazio’s dedication, and have started calling the Verona concert what Il Volo calls it, “Il nostro concerto per chi non ce l’ha fatta”: Our concert in honor of those who didn’t make it.
We are grateful for Il Volo’s sensitivity and care.
Do you feel that? The excitement in the air! It’s been going on since last week but, it intensified on the morning of June 5th with Ignazio’s message. “Finally, June 5th! You don’t know how long we waited for this day! How many days to think, to study, to develop ideas! How many days to hope it would come! Today is an important day for the entire music industry. We start singing in front of an audience!”
You can hear the excitement in his voice! His words sent chills up and down my spine. His words say it’s over! We made it! Live is back!
Let’s go to the stage!
Did you notice the interesting scenery? So different from what we are used to in an Il Volo concert. Spectacular scenery! And the videos that go along with each song. Such precision! Just amazing! Everything so well thought out. Down to the last detail!
The guys kept the set list a secret. They wanted to surprise all of us. Piero said, “As for the set list we like to keep it a secret. We will try to satisfy every need of our audience by always keeping the master at the center.” And that they did!
Remembering Morricone’s music and having our guys sing it is by far one of the most incredible things that can happen for us. An event that will never be repeated by anyone! Spectacular!
Piero went on to say, “The Concert will anticipate the album that will be released later.” We anxiously await the release!
While they were dealing with the pandemic, they were being very productive. Gianluca said, “We dealt with the pandemic productively, we tried not to give up. Young people must not give up the strength to believe in their dreams and pursue their goals.” He also went on to thank the Morricone family for allowing them to sing an unreleased song, written by Andrea Morricone, “I Colori dell’amore.” A very beautiful song!
Piero was excited to say that: “This is the first time we have performed live TV.” Well guys you did an amazing job!”
We really appreciate the tribute to Ennio Morricone because as Ignazio reminded us “it is the only (concert) date scheduled in 2021.”
I must say, the Morricone project kept them very busy. They had to select and study songs from the master’s repertoire. That was no easy task.
So how do you go about selecting the songs and fitting them to your voice. It’s very difficult! Let me remind you about something Ignazio said about recording a song. Ignazio explains, “….a take is the recording of the single phrase that each of us sings when we record a song. We continue to redo it until we get the best version.”
Can you imagine going through all of Morricone’s songs and deciding which ones to choose? Remember a song that may be good for a baritone may not be good for a tenor. So, what do you do? You redo the arrangements to fit your voice. How? You take the song apart and then decide which part is able to accommodate a tenor or baritone. Not an easy task! Think about some of the concerts where the guys have sung a song as a group (the three) and then decided it should be a duet. Why? Because it is more suitable to two voices perhaps baritone and tenor or tenor and spinto tenor. You need to see how it fits your voice and how it relates. In the end it’s all about the delivery. Once you’ve taken the song apart, you must put it back together again. Shall I say it again, not an easy task! It takes months to rearrange this many songs and believe me these guys worked very hard for long hours and long periods of time, many, many months, to get these songs where they needed to be. Great songs, arranged to great voices!
Let me give you an example of what I’m talking about. These are the words to the song “Se Telefonando.” It is a song that was performed by a famous Italian singer, Mina. It was released in May 1966. I want you to listen to Mina sing the song and then listen to Il Volo sing it. You will note that the words did not change. Just the arrangement changed to fit the voices of our guys.
Lo stupore della notte Spalancata sul mar Ci sorprese che eravamo sconosciuti Io e te. Poi nel buio le tue mani D’improvviso sulle mie, È cresciuto troppo in fretta Questo nostro amor. Se telefonando Io potessi dirti addio Ti chiamerei. Se io rivedendoti Fossi certa che non soffri Ti rivedrei. Se guardandoti negli occhi Sapessi dirti basta Ti guarderei. Ma non so spiegarti Che il nostro amore appena nato È già finito. Se telefonando Io volessi dirti addio Ti chiamerei. Se io rivedendoti Fossi certa che non soffri Ti rivedrei. Se guardandoti negli occhi Sapessi dirti basta Ti guarderei. Ma non so spiegarti Che il nostro amore appena nato È già finito
So now you can understand what I mean by taking a song and arranging it to fit another voice. Without changing the words look at how the song has changed. The delivery is spectacular! Just magnificent!
The studio work is done. The songs are in the bag and everything in place. It’s time for the guys to restart the live concerts! In essence, symbolically, restart the entire sector.
As to Rai 1, Claudio Fasulo explained, “For our flagship network it is an honor to host this date. Rai 1 wants to remember Morricone who has done so much for our culture through the many arts. I wanted three young people to do it that I admire so much. They were born into a talent, but they also teach us that talent is sometimes meritocratic.”
“Il Volo has the artistic and behavioral characteristics of Rai 1. It is no coincidence that in our schedules of great music, the trio is always present. Dedicating an evening to Ennio Morricone was a duty for us.”
Gianluca says: “For us it is a great journey, a wonderful adventure. A year after his death we want to remember the master in the best way. We were born as child prodigies and after 12 years of career we can say that this project makes us proud and makes us feel more mature”.
Piero says, “At last, we sing. It’s been a tough year and there’s a desire to get on stage and bring all the workers in the show with us. I want to point out that it will not be the orchestra that will accompany us, but we will sing together.” Alluding to the long-awaited return to live, Ignazio said, “Let’s go back to singing in one of the largest outdoor theaters in the world, finally safe. The ancient sayings are always the truest, hope is the last to die.”
In an interview given to the magazine Mio, Piero, allowed himself to go to a painful confession about the very hard period from which we come and, which now seems, fortunately, to give us a moment of respite. “Finally, we sing, after a year and a half we could not take it anymore! Ours is a dream job. We are incurable dreamers. Every wish is finally coming to fruition. On June 5th we will give a message of hope, there is a great desire to get on that stage.”
And that is exactly what they did!
So, let’s turn to the master!
You can ask anyone if they know who Ennio Morricone is, many people will say no. But, if you ask them if they know the theme song from “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly.” They’ll say of course I know it. Everyone knows Morricone’s music! They may not know his name but, they certainly know his music.
So where did our guys begin the concert? They began with the most famous of Morricone’s songs from The Good, the Bad and the Ugly – “The Ecstasy of Gold.” Smart! This song set the mood for the concert. What they did with this song and, the other songs, is amazing!
Let’s talk about some of the music. Let’s start by asking the question, “What made Morricone’s music different? Why was it so popular? Why was he the most sought after composer in the last 40 years? The answer is his arrangements and his style. Unlike anyone else in his time Morricone composed and wrote songs that reflected nature and reflected everyday life! In his music we hear the wind and the rain, the howls and the silence! Again, I will go back to songs like “Se Telefonando,” where we hear three notes in this song that represent the siren of a police car. He wrote about reality. How he heard it, is how he wrote. He didn’t describe the event he used the event! When you write a theme song or compose a score for a film, it has to draw you in. It has to tell the story before you witness it.
Now I’m going to step out of the concert for a moment but stick with Morricone because I need to pay a compliment to Ignazio.
As you recall, the first time we heard the song “Makari” which Ignazio composed and wrote, was during Sanremo 2021. When I heard the song, I felt like there was something very familiar about it. Last night after I wrote about three quarters of this article, I was tired so I went to bed. And, as it often happens with me, I wake up in the middle of the night and think about something I want to say in my story. This is what came to me. I finally figured out what was so familiar about “Makari.” Ignazio wrote in the style of Morricone. Think about it. What is Ignazio doing for us in this theme song? He is painting a picture for us! Remember I said, it has to draw you in. It has to tell the story before you witness it.
Ignazio’s song invites us to take a better look at this other land in the south (Sicily). It speaks of “a land of sages and a land of fools, made from devils and saints.” It invites you to live a new reality through his eyes. This is exactly what Morricone does in his songs.
In a Morricone song you hear life! In Ignazio’s song you hear the sounds of Sicily. It is the “silence” of the land that screams for you to open your eyes and look around at the wonder of the landscape, of Makari, and the traditions of the land that go deep into your soul?
There is something very mysterious in the song, Makari. Very much like Morricone’s “The Ecstasy of Gold” from The Good, the Bad and the Ugly.
Ignazio’s song sings about approaching Makari and, the colors of the island come to life. The houses, the people, it’s all there. It comes to life before you approach the shore! It’s written very much like a Morricone song. And that’s what I was feeling when I heard the song!
Ignazio, I said you are a great composer and, some day you will compose a great opera. This is the proof. You learned from the master! Imitation is the greatest compliment you can give anyone. You are your own master but, we have to begin somewhere and where you began was at the front door! Amazing!
Now, let’s get back to the concert!
I’m not going to write in any detail about the songs. There are a few other articles which will be written for Flight Crew this week which will discuss the songs individually. I am merely going to name the new songs and where necessary, give you some details on how they came about.
“Your Love” from Once Upon a Time in the West, is a song we all are familiar with. It is the song that the guys sang at Sanremo 2021. As Il Volo fans, this song will be with us forever. There are tender moments attached to it. It is an absolutely magnificent song. No one else could sing it like our guys. I know it touches my heart not just because of the circumstances but because of the emotion and passion the guys have when they sing this song. It will always be a signature song for them and for us!
So, what did they need in this production, a good pop song, set to music by Morricone, “Se Telefonando.” As I already mentioned, “Se Telefonando” is a song that was performed by a famous Italian singer, Mina. The music was composed, orchestrated and conducted by Ennio Morricone to Italian lyrics by Ghigo De Chiara and Maurizio Costanzo. The song was written for an episode of the Aria condizionata a Sunday morning television program. The main theme of the song was composed around just three notes, taken from the siren of a police car in Marseilles.
At this point, the guys did their solos. Where do I begin to talk about the solos?
As I said, I am not writing about the individual songs, but I will say that each of the guys’ solos were phenomenal. Gianluca’s “Your Song,” Ignazio’s “Listen” and Piero’s “No Puede Ser” were exceptional experiences in a sea of amazing voices.
What I will comment on is little Julian. Many critics praised him and so do I! See guys, this is how you were at 8 years old. Blowing everyone’s mind. Ignazio, if you didn’t already sign him, you need to do it before he gets away!
Riccardo Cocciante the guest of Il Volo sang “Quando finisce un amore,” an Ennio Morricone song which he first recorded in his Riccardo SOUL 1974 album.
We go back to the theme song of “Nuovo Cinema Paradiso” from the film of the same name. At the end of the song there is a small exchange between our guys and Salvatore Cascio, the child, now adult, of Nuovo Cinema Paradiso.
Raphael Gualazzi on the piano and Nina Zilli, together with Il Volo perform the beautiful theme song from the film of the same name, “Metti, una Sera a Cena.”
Next came “Here’s to You”, the theme from Sacco and Vanzetti. This was preceded by a reading of the story of the two unfortunate Italian immigrants, read by Giallini. For those of you who don’t know the story of Sacco and Vanzetti here is a brief summary:
Nicola Sacco and Bartolomeo Vanzetti were Italian immigrants, anarchists, who were controversially convicted of murdering a guard and a paymaster during the April 15, 1920, armed robbery of the Slater and Morrill Shoe Company in Braintree, Massachusetts.
A series of appeals followed, funded largely by the private Sacco and Vanzetti Defense Committee. As details of the trial and the men’s suspected innocence became known, Sacco and Vanzetti became the center of one of the largest causes célèbres in modern history.
Responding to a massive influx of telegrams urging their pardon, Massachusetts governor Alvan T. Fuller appointed a three-man commission to investigate the case. After weeks of secret deliberation, the commission upheld the verdict. Sacco and Vanzetti were executed in the electric chair just after midnight on August 23, 1927.
And so, we come to the end of the concert and the dedication of “Conradiana” to Vito Boschetto, Ignazio’s dad. “Conradiana” is a beautiful song written by Andrea Bocelli and Ennio Morricone. Very touching, very emotional and it certainly touched the heart of Ignazio and his brothers Piero and Gianluca, and I know it also touched our hearts.
We were so busy waiting for this Tribute that it seems we have missed an important event. Italy won Eurovision. What does that mean for us? It means next year Italy will host Eurovision. Rai, I don’t want to tell you how to do your job but, I think I know three very handsome, very talented young men who would absolutely be the best possible hosts for the program. Are You listening? Great events should have great people hosting them.
In closing today let me say that the guys showed us their talent and their love in this concert. And they really dedicated it to us. When they were singing their song, to Sacco and Vanzetti, they were saying to us, their fans, “Here’s to You.”
But what I really need to say is “Here’s to You” for a phenomenal, unforgettable, Concert!
Join me next week as I go back Through the Fields of My Mind and open the door to a new adventure!
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I’m still stunned by all the beauty I saw last night.
A stratospheric concert, wonderful voices, rested and powerful, beautiful music, spectacular sets, all like a fairy tale.
It was not a “Magic Night”, it was a “Starry Night”, because Piero, Ignazio and Gianluca are three stars that shine with a wonderful light, and when they are combined the result is simply spectacular.
Three beautiful and elegant young men bewitched and delighted the whole audience.
In my ears I still have their beautiful voices and my eyes still see everything that last night was unique and unforgettable.
I tell you right away that they did not allow us to enter the Arena with the camera, so I could not take videos or beautiful photos, I could only use my mobile.
But RAI1 has re-taken everything (filmed it all) and who better than them? I hope you all can see it as it will be a truly rewarding experience.
Click the photo below to view the concert.
There were 23 beautiful songs, some already known because they are part of the repertoire of Il Volo and many new for us and one completely unpublished.
Now let’s go over with some nice fan videos (not done by me), and some of my comments.
The preview begins with a joke with Marco Giallini, where Ignazio jokes saying that his shoes are very bad and Giallini tells him that he took them out of wood !!
Click the photo below to view the Anteprima.
The start was truly overwhelming with “The Ecstasy of Gold – The Good, the Bad and the Ugly”. Wonder!! A spectacular start !!
THE ECSTASY OF GOLD. THE GOOD, THE BAD, AND THE UGLY
Then they sang a beautiful YOUR LOVE, from the film Once Upon a Time in the West.
and then, remembering Notte Magica of 2017, NESSUN DORMA.
At this point a beautiful Italian actress enters: Laura Chiatti, whom Piero and Gianluca call “muse” and whom Ignazio calls “picciotta” (in Sicilian: young girl)
So a good pop song, also set to music by Morricone: SE TELEFONANDO.
The show continues with the introduction of IL MONDO, halfway through the song a guest enters, a famous Italian singer-songwriter (he also wrote Notre Dame De Paris): Riccardo Cocciante.
Then he will sing one of his songs to music by Morricone: “When a Love Ends”.
It starts again with another music from the film, NUOVO CINEMA PARADISO, at the end of the song there will be a small exchange between our kids and Salvatore Cascio, the child, now adult, of Nuovo Cinema Paradiso.
Two other guests, Raphael Gualazzi on the piano and Nina Zilli, who together with Il Volo perform the beautiful song from the film METTI UNA SERA A CENA.
Something from the repertoire of our boys, but which we always listen to very willingly:
O SOLE MIO and GRANDE AMORE
Back to Morricone’s film music: SACCO E VANZETTI, preceded by a reading of the story of the two unfortunate Italian immigrants, read by Giallini.
While Giallini was reading the story, Piero, Ignazio and Gianluca went down the corridors among the audience, to sing from that position. Piero was in the central corridor, just that close to me. I want to describe what I saw and that made me extremely happy.
Piero was in the corridor, but further ahead of my seat (farther from the stage) and I had to turn around to see him, he was with his back to me. RAI was in front of Piero for the video shoot, but at that moment Piero was not filmed.
He was hot, he was sweating and an assistant came over to wipe his forehead and then walked away from him. At that moment two elderly people, who had perhaps gone to the bathroom, were returning to their seats, which were right next to where Piero was. The man was old, large, and walked laboriously with a cane, supported by his wife. It was clear that if the TV shooting started, they were right in the middle, so Piero, who was already ready, began to call the assistant in a low voice to tell him to solve the situation, but that assistant was far away and did not hear and therefore Piero, seeing that the man was having a hard time getting into his seat, he went to him, held his seat in place, and helped him to and enter his row.
Despite the live TV, Piero was kind and thoughtful to this person, I don’t know how many artists would have done the same. Very good Piero !!
After Sacco and Vanzetti, they sang E PIÙ TI PENSO from Once Upon a time in America.
We are at the moment of the three beautiful singles.
Gianluca begins who amazes us with a beautiful song by Elton John written 51 years ago: YOUR SONG.
Gianluca dedicates the song to his mother.
Piero continues with the beautiful NO PUEDE SER accompanied by the flutist Andrea Griminelli.
And so Ignazio concludes with a wonderful LISTEN performed in the company of Julian Iorio who is only 8 years old.
A little, sweet interview with Julian at the end of the song.
I = Julian, you have been very good, but how old are you?
J = Thanks. 8 and a half years.
I = And where are you from?
J = From Fregene (locality near Rome)
I = Are you passionate about music?
J = A lot.
I = Where do you go after the concert?
J = I don’t know.
I = Aren’t you going home?
J = Yes, I’m going home. Tomorrow I wake up, make the trip and go home.
I = But in how many hours?
J = When we arrived it took us 6 hours, and I don’t know to go back.
I = Sure, it depends on the traffic, (laughter) Thanks a lot !!
J = You’re welcome.
I = Julian Iorio
Let’s go back to film music and continue with the beautiful GABRIEL’S OBOE, taken from MISSION.
And now a song that is part of our boys NEL BLU DIPINTO DI BLU.
In the middle of the song, when the boys descended into the audience, Ignazio approached his mother and gave her a kiss on the forehead. ❤
At this moment Piero was close to me doing the high pitch, you can see me sitting next to Piero, wearing an electric blue jacket. I made the photo, Piero, Ignazio were really close.
Below, Il Volo performs UN AMORE COSÌ GRANDE and MY WAY.
A beautiful unpublished song follows, an absolute first, I like it very much and I really hope to hear it many times, written by Andrea Morricone, I COLORI DELL’AMORE:
We have reached the end of the concert. The song with which it all ends is taken from the opera La Traviata: LIBIAM DE LIETI CALICI.
And so the concert ends, but before leaving us the boys tell us that after the finale there will be a surprise.
In fact after the applause Il Volo returns and makes a beautiful and moving dedication.
It is a very touching moment, because Ignazio begins by dedicating the song to all those who in this long period have lost so many loved ones.
Piero goes on to say that this concert was dedicated to Vito Boschetto who they all miss a lot. After the announcement was made, you could see Gianluca and Piero biting at their lips trying to hold back their emotions for their dear friend, Ignazio. There are some very touching moments of support and hug to Ignazio by Piero and Gianluca. Really very moving.
Ignazio, Piero and Gianluca perform CONRADIANA a beautiful song written by Bocelli and Morricone.
Thunderous applause and standing ovations. The concert is over and the TV shoot is over. Piero, Gianluca and Ignazio greet us and leave the stage.
People don’t go away, everyone stands all ahead, everyone murmurs BIS (BIS means we still want a song) and so the boys come back and, just for us, audience, they perform THE GOOD THE BAD AND THE UGLY, taking off their jackets and saying goodbye for the last time. A short piece.
A memorable evening.
Perfect performances, formidable guys and full of affectionate gestures towards each other. Incredible.
Both live and home audiences poured out all the love for these young men.
It goes without saying that the concert in RAI had the highest ratings.
For now, the comments of the press are few (today is Sunday) but good.
I want to conclude with a beautiful comment by a well-known Italian singer Rita Pavone.
Yesterday I saw the concert of the Tribute to Ennio Morricone aside of IL VOLO. Well, folks, there’s none for anyone! (This expression means that they are the best and there is none better than them!) Those three guys are sensational, they’re great. They face lyrical and pop arias, two worlds light years away, with a totally different setting and register voice but managing to be just as credible as to leave the listener amazed.
The “Listen” by Ignazio Boschetto, with the contribution of the very talented Julian – it is really true that talents are born! An 8 year old boy who plays the sax like a new John Coltrane but with the look and grit of a Lisa Simpson -, he was a real punch in the stomach for all those, myself included, who would never have imagined how much soul there is in that voice. I knew instead of this vocal duplicity in Gianluca Ginoble, because I had already had the opportunity to listen to him some time ago in some pop songs, but his version of “Your Song” last night was so beautiful that if there had been Elton John in the room, he would be the first to stand up and applaud. The opera singer par excellence, on the other hand, remains Piero Barone, whose ease in taking the highest notes and the most difficult treble notes is for him like drinking a glass of water.
What to say ? That we just have to be proud of having similar talents who bear the name of Italy in the world. And whoever says the opposite either does not understand anything about music, or is in bad faith, or is envious.
I know that in this project, the choices were completely made by our three treasures. This shows their artistic maturity, as well as physical – they are young but with a lot of common sense and good taste !! But we already knew it!
I was there, it was unforgettable: Daniela❤❤❤
Here are some of my photos.
With Deborah Georgini Beaupre
Before the concert, during the connection with the TG