Il Volo 2014 North America tour – 6/6 Mountain Winery, Saratoga, CA

2014 has to be the luckiest year for me!  I am fortunate enough to attend my second back to back concerts.  And I don’t have to go far, both concerts are held within my area.  Mountain Winery is situated on a hilltop overlooking the famous Silicon Valley, and reaches as far as the beautiful City of San Francisco.  The weather and temperature was just right and with a slight smell from the winery, yesterday was bound to be a perfect night!  And it was.  Our guys were AMAZING, AMAZING, AMAZING!!!

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Unfortunately, there was a no photos and videos policy so these are the best I can get.  But WOW, don’t they look handsome (specially you know who!).


(Back) Elaine, Pirate/Connie (Front) Jeanine, Vicki, Lauren, Gerri
(Back) Elaine, Pirate/Connie (Front) Jeanine, Vicki, Lauren, Gerri

I was also able to meet up with several of our Flight Crew members.  These are the pictures we took before the concerts.  I am so surprised and amazed to meet two of our Crews from Guatemala – Agnes and Marisse.  This was their second concert just like me. But unlike me they will also be going to their third at LA’s Greek Theatre!  Bravo to them, what true Il Volovers!

Pirate, Jeanine, Marisse, Agnes, Elaine
Pirate, Jeanine, Marisse, Agnes, Elaine

Flight Crew’s in house Pirate -Connie had such a memorable experience she can’t wait and send me her concert story already.  I thoroughly enjoy her story as I share much of her feelings as well.  Connie also shares her M&G adventure and hopefully this will give us some pointers as to what to expect.



From Pirate/Connie,
I finally got to see IL VOLO in concert! Wow, it was even better than I expected it to be. This is one happy old pirate.  Jeanine and I traveled all the way down from Portlandia, Oregon to Saratoga, CA just to see them. On the day of IL VOLO I felt excited and yet calm. Did I mention how close we were….CLOSE! Jeanine and I were in row C seats 1 & 2 right in front of the stage with NO one to block our view. Happiness.

They were so close…and so handsome! I was struck by how Gianluca walks in a very deliberate way as he comes onto the stage. Piero was next and my heart lurched and my eyes got reaaaaaaaaallly wide. I am amazed the world still rotated in that moment. Then Ignazio, the handsome Ignazio. It suddenly occurred to me that Ignazio would look really good on a pirate ship, but then the vision of Piero pulled me back (he is really good at that!) I also have to note that the crowd cheered and applauded when each guy came out, BUT I do believe it was Ignazio who captured the loudest applause and cheer.

What can I say to you about the music?  That it was divine is something we all know. I wish I could have kept track of each song they sang. Piero has such a wonderful, GLORIOUS voice, I think I sort of, kinda, maybe quit breathing during his solos. I have heard many versions of “Memory” before, most of which were blah, but Ignazio sang it with such passion, I could tell by the emotion he invested in that song that it is clearly one of his all time favorites and he made me fall in love with it all over again. Gianluca did the Elvis solo – “Can’t Help Falling In Love”, beautifully but I so loved his rendition of “Night & Day”. No one can ever say that IL VOLO sings without passion and great meaning to each of their songs. It was simply thrilling to hear them sing live.

Then came the Meet & Greet, suddenly I began to feel a bit like I was in a cattle drive with one of their handlers moving us along. However, I kept my eyes on Piero, Gianluca and Ignazio and you know, as much as I like how spiffy they look on stage, I think I like seeing them look casual more. So eyes on the prize I watched them meet all the crazy fans and then…..came my moment: Arms wide, I advanced toward Piero and Ignazio and said ” ABBRACCIAMI” which means “Hug Me!” in Italian (Gianluca was busy talking to another fan who Did Not Realize This Was My Moment). I grabbed Piero and I heard him say to me, “Oh so sweet of you”! Then while I still had him in my grasp, I laid my hand on his chest and looked into those red glasses and said to him “You are my ThunderBaron, your voice is like that to me”. He looked a bit surprised and I saw Ignazio get closer. I turned to him with Piero right beside me and I told them, ” You make my heart sing”. Ignazio looked confused, so I repeated myself but this time I said ” IL VOLO makes my heart sing”. Right now I can see the moment and their faces but I can’t for the life of me conjure up the words that describe the moment . Instead I looked at them and said, “ok, time for my photo’ and put my arms around both of them. Finally Gianluca turned around and gave me a radiant smile, then CLICK- and it was over.

Now I have to figure out new ways to make plenty of loot so I can afford to chase them around concert after concert. I wish…



That was quite an adventure! Thanks for sharing, pirate style!

45 thoughts on “Il Volo 2014 North America tour – 6/6 Mountain Winery, Saratoga, CA”

  1. Pirate, it sounds like you were not rushed through the M&G. Can you estimate and tell us how much time was given to you. Also who took the photo? Was it from their photographer?

    By the way, I gave the loudest applause to Ignazio too because I was happy to finally to see them all on stage together. That was a nice entrance and arrangement. Sure keep the audience fired up waiting for them to appear one by one.

    1. By the way Elaine great pictures of the Flight Crew members. Its nice to know what who looks like when we are texting on the blog. I can just imagine us seniors (I don’t class you as a senior) vieing for attention in competition with the young crowd. Also was it your daughter that Piero pulled up on stage to dance with?? f it was lucky girl.

    2. Elaine, I did feel a bit rushed by the handler who seemed on the rude side. I suppose he was just doing his job but stilll… also wonder if I rushed myself. I do realize they were tired and there were plenty more fans to process through. There was not a professional photographer which could be good news/ bad news. As you can tell in my photo the lighting was very poor, in fact the entire area for the M&G was very peculiar but that is an issue to take up with the venue.

      I know I hardly had enough time and I rushed myself for them and I was sad not to really have a bit of attention from Gianluca, but then us pirates always love our attention!. It all boils down to one question:
      “For the money that was spent, was it worth it?”

      The answer has to be YES and YES times infinity and beyond!

    3. I felt the same, Elaine, that all Our Guys are so appreciated, and whoever is last gets the “Ahhhh… They’re all here now!” applause.

      Connie, I LOVE your article, especially your brave and wonderful M&G actions! Soooo special! You have such a fun writing style.

      We will probably Never Forget June 6, 2014!

      I’ve got my article written, and it will be posted as time allows. The Flight Crew has got a lot goin’ on with all these concerts and Piero’s birthday coming up. I’ve got a different flavor to my sharing, so it will be perfect timing whenever it works out.

      Gotta call it a night and do some more catching up tomorrow.

      Love and gratitude to all,
      ~ Jeanine, Compassion’s Doorway

  2. Oh Connie, how much fun you were at the Mt. Winery concert! However, if I had taken your advice about what to do if The Guys ( they are no longer boys!) got near our seats, I would probably be in the Saratoga jail waiting to see if my husband would bail me out. I could feel your excitement during the concert even though you were two seats away from us. I’m glad you were able to tell The Guys exactly how you feel about them at the M&G. Since I didn’t possess your clarity of direction, I blubbered something about their coming to Louisiana and gave them each a pecan praline from New Orleans (even though the man who searched my bag at the entrance had squashed them). Pecans aren’t grown in Italy, and The Guys were gracious enough to act grateful. Now I wish I had just thrown decorum to the wind and hugged those cuties, but I was afraid of their handler–aka Atilla the Hun.
    I would love to attend another concert with you, and Jeanine, and Elaine, and Isabel, and Jerri. I hope you are all safely back home, reliving that awesome evening when stars twinkled over the mountaintop and three handsome Italians sang with voices that sounded like they fell straight from heaven. (Did that sum it up?)

    1. Vicki, you asked me what was my favorite concert moment on my last post. My answer is Gianluca sings Night & Day. I am happy and relief to see that he putted behind the incident from Modesto and sang the song gracefully. I gave him standing ovation and blew lots of kisses – did you see that?

      Well, we definitely need to do this again. Next time Connie and I better accompany you to the M&G and show you how it should be done (No hugs?! What Hun, who cares).

    2. Vicki, I t was grand to meet you and Lauren too! I freely admit I was more than a little excited, which normally I try to be ultra cool and contained as a good pirate should but the concept of seeing these beautiful men live was too much.
      In case anyone wonders what I told Vicki to do, I told her if Ignazio or Gianluca came close she was to reach out and GRAB, DRAG and SMOOCH! I figured Piero was too smart to get too close to me and sure enough he avoided our direction!

      I want to go again. Somebody win the lottery and send me!

      1. I actually did get a nice “side” hug from Ignazio as we got arranged for our picture. He also squeezed me tightly as his arm was around my waist for the photo. ( and I squeezed him back). I must be satisfied with that. Last concert I got a lot of attention from Gianluca, and I even retired the rings I had on that night since he squeezed my right hand with both of his from the stage. Watch out Piero–you are next!!
        Connie, I agree that I probably rushed myself during the M&G. But I didn’t want that scruffy handler to say something rude to me like he did to another girl.

      2. Connie, if I ever win a lottery, I promise to send you to an Il Volo concert!! Oops, I guess I had better start buying lottery tickets.

      3. So cool to read the sweet details, Vicki and Connie! Love the hug around the waist and the rings details!

        I’m not sure who the handler is, but I can tell you that he walked in front of the camera when my photos were being taken. I have in my mind a nice little list of suggested ways of communicating that would get the point across clearly and respectfully with warmth in the air. Oh, maybe I should volunteer for the job! 😉
        Then I wouldn’t need to win the lottery!

        The amazing thing was that, as we were leaving the M&G, that same man said twice to Connie and me, “Thank you, ladies!” What a surprise!

        Sweet IL VOLO dreams!
        ~ Jeanine, Compassion’s Doorway

      4. Marie, Il Volo’s M&G handler at the Mt Winery looked a lot like the man who sold the Il Volo merchandise last August in Fresno. I think he is the same man. He had a gruff manner then, too. Actually, that handler wasn’t rude to me or Lauren either, mainly because we hurried our visit with the guys by going up to meet them together. We should have met them separately and taken more time. We did, however, witness some unnecessary rudeness to other girls. I sent a text to, telling them that I paid a rate of $620 a minute for the meet and greet, which included about 30 seconds for me and my daughter. However, I suspect that the man is an Il Volo employee.
        But , in the end, we were right there with the incomparable Il Volo–Up Close and Personal! I would do it again.

      5. Vicki, thanks for sending the text. (I’m not set up for texting.) Perhaps they’ll consider how to proceed more kindly and effectively. I’m putting out my prayers for that.

        ~ Jeanine, Compassion’s Doorway

  3. Pirate, thank you for your report of the Meet and Greet. I have been to two previously, and have been wondering about how this one would be handled. The Meet and Greet is such a curious thing….expectations are to unrealistically high that the fast moving pace of the whole thing can be disappointing. It’s a moment that you want to make the most of, and it’s over almost before it’s begun. It’s worth uf, of course, just to get that close and (sigh) touch. Conversation is difficult, if not impossible. You want to grab that moment and hang on, and poof, it’s over. Thankfully the photo is proof that it really happened and helps you to relive the experience. I love that Piero said that “it was so sweet of you.” He is that kind of guy. I hope your memory of the event stays fresh in your mind—such a fleeting bit of heaven to remember and cherish.

  4. What a wonderful report (Scoop Pirate) I heard an instrumental on Charter MC – “You Take My Breath Away.” Who wants to write the lyrics and call it “Il Volo – You Take My Breath Away.” There is so much talent on this website – I am proud to be a part of it. Grazie!

    1. Love your idea, Marie S! Always good to see a post from you.

      Mary B, loved your comments.

      Look forward to meeting you ladies, and so many more! one of these days.

      ~ Jeanine, Compassion’s Doorway

  5. PIRATE!!!!!! You are so lucky and I am SO glad that you had an amazing time, if your above story is anything to judge by! Getting to hug Piero sounds like 5 seconds of pure Heaven! Congratulations, and I hope I’ll be able to meet you and everyone else next tour.

    P.S. I know that you wouldn’t let your chance at the Thunder Baron go with just a hug. I want to know what REALLY happened later, when Ms. Crider isn’t looking! 😉

    1. Isabel, I wish I could have gotten his autograph for you but they were not permiting such a thing. I will tell you this: when I hugged him I smelled his cologne which was a lovely spicy scent, just like him!

  6. I was so happy to meet my Il Volo Flight Crew sisters at Mountain Winery. Elaine (such a doll!) Jeanine (oh my gosh!) Pirate (she was so excited!) and all the rest. Ok first of all it was a beautiful venue, but they wouldn’t let us take pictures and they kept an eagle eye on the audience to make sure. It was a a lovely concert, felt very intimate. Each boy (I mean man) sounds richer and they have matured. I couldn’t tell they had jet lag. Backstage Gianluca was so friendly. I asked him if the ring he wears was from Belinda, “he said ohh no no this is a gift from Barbara”. I said to Piero “I know you’re tired” he showed me his big watch which was on Italy time and said “I am tired its 7:30 am at home”. Oh I wish Il Volo was part of my family. I asked Piero to take a picture with my phone and he did.

    1. It’s nice meeting you Gerri. We sure have fun and the concert is amazing – the best one for me so far. We definitely need to do this again. Love your M&G moments and thanks for telling me/us about Gian’s mystery ring, lol.

    2. Oh Gerri, that is so cool! Its just a shame they couldn’t have let the guys rest up and get “Un”-jetlagged before the concerts began. Did the picture turn out well?

    3. So sweet, Gerri!

      Next time we gotta all have some time together for real visiting. It was a delight to meet you and your friend (Helen, I think)! I spent the intermission checking in with my family (who were thrilled) and trekking to the ladies room.

      GERRI, I have a nice photo of you and your friend. If you write to me
      I would be delighted to send it to you.

      I wish I could work with the guys to help with jet lag! I’ve got several techniques, which I finally remembered to use for myself for another travel experience: feeling “the road is still moving” (2 days later!).

      Love the inside story about the ring from Barbara.

      You looked so happy and excited, Gerri. Keep smiling and dreaming of the joy that is soaring with IL VOLO!

      ~ Jeanine, Compassion’s Doorway

  7. WOW Elaine sounds like you had a an unbelievable time in Saratoga. If I every get as close to Piero as you did I think I might just faint. He is my everything. You were so lucky. I’m going to save my money and when they come around here again next year I for sure am going.

  8. I hope that I am able to act as you did and get such a lovely response and picture. Never been to a M&G and only my second concert. Have listened to the video clips and can only image how much better they will be in person!

  9. Pirate/Connie, that’s a great review of your first Il Volo Experience! I am just speechless when I am in the same building with them! I totally understand your feelings! <3

    1. Thank you Barb, I remember thinking how bold I was to actually lay my hand on Piero’s chest so I could capture his full attention for my Thunder Baron remark but all the same I would do it again in a heartbeat.

  10. What a wonderful experience you had, Connie. I am so looking forward to my first concert! I’m so afraid I’ll turn into a stuttering idiot when I get to hug Piero. And of course, the stunningly handsome Ignazio, and gorgeous Gianluca will also leave me voiceless. Just 12-1/2 days until Milwaukee!!

    1. Allene, Jeanne and I will look for you in Milwaukee, will you be wearing your FC badge?? These experiences shared by these lovely ladies are so filled with love and excitement…. I can only imagine the heart-pounding moments they had hugging and being so close to say a word or two to these young men. I hope I don’t whither or say something silly to them in my happiness…I might have teary eyes, oh my!!! ♥

  11. Love the pics, Elaine, and thanks for your posts these last two days. 🙂

    And Connie, it sounds like you had a great time! Thanks for sharing with us. 🙂

  12. This was much fun to read. exciting times for all of you. thank you. I will have my report from L.A. tonight.

    1. Thank you, Myron, for all your news and inside ‘scoop’ you share with us. Look forward to reading all your news!!! ☺

    2. Hi, Myron. I am also looking forward to you account. I was also at the Greek last night so I will be telling my experience with these wonderful singers and also, as you know, the “famous” person in the audience. I am still smiling and singing! (This was my first concert!!) Victoria

  13. It’s been great reading Elaine’s last two posts, we were all looking so forward for info and photos and we got it all.

    Looking forward to your review, Myron.

  14. Thanks for sharing your amazing experience !!! And I must say it”s just great to see the faces that go with the names. Now I can visualize you when you blog !! Cool !!! Six days and counting down to the Stamford Concert !!!! Jumping up and down with excitement !!!

  15. Wonderful story. I loved seeing the faces put to names we see here. Your account of the evening was so fun to read. Pictures are awesome. Sounded like a night made in heaven for sure! So happy for you !

  16. Thank you, from my heart, all of you wonderful fans for your details about your experiences seeing our wonderful young men, up close and personal. I am very excited and a little nervous to be seeing them for the first time in concert on the 21st. Hoping I can tame my fluttering heart at the M&G and say something of the deep appreciation I have for them. Thank you again and a

  17. Thanks everyone for all the tidbits–my first concert I was quite far back and this one I will be in the third row. So excited and it will be my first M & G. If they don’t allow pictures/videos I will be very disappointed. Thanks for the tip about asking Piero to take your picture. I will definitely try that one!
    Myron, I too am eagerly awaiting your “professional” report!

  18. Concerning the M&G, if you can afford it and if it is really important to have a few seconds of their undivided attention, buy it. If I had to choose, I would use the money for a front row seat again–that experience was hours of eye contact and exchanged smiles. However, those seats are hard to come by.

    1. I agree with you Vicki, if push comes to shove I would put my money on getting the best seat I could for a concert over the M&G. A friend of mine just this morning told me she was surprised I did this trip because she knows I need a new computer and some car work…I just shook my head and told her that sometimes life events are more important that objects. Loving IL VOLO, seeing them in concert and then in person just made 2014 a stellar year for me!

      1. I know, Connie! And you can re-live the experience by listening to their music anytime. It just takes you to another place when life bears down on you. You did the best thing for yourself, IMO.

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