Personally Speaking ~ An Idol Becomes a Friend ~



This beautiful picture of Andrea Bocelli’s son Matteo,  Gianluca, Andrea and Ercole, made me think of this meaningful quote by Wilma Rudolph,  a famous American track and field sprinter.

“Never underestimate the power of dreams and the influence of the human spirit.  We are all the same in this notion: The potential for greatness lives within each of us.”

We all know that Andrea Bocelli has been an idol of Gianluca’s since he was very young.  Who can forget the heart warming reaction Gianluca had when  Andrea congratulated him on winning the Ti Lascio Una Canzone competition?  Gianluca was not the only one shedding tears during that beautiful moment.

Seeing this photo of the two of them together made me think of the “greatness” they both possess, the power of Gianluca’s dreams and the important  influence this person had in Gianluca’s life.

Born with poor eyesight, Andrea became permanently blind at the age of 12 following a football accident.  As a young boy he showed great passion for music.  At the age of six, he started piano lessons, and later, also learned to play the flute, saxophone, trumpet, trombone, guitar and drums.  Then, when his nanny, Oriana, gave him the first record of Franco Corelli, he realized that pursuing the career of a tenor was his destiny.  By the age of seven, he was able to recognize the famous voices of the time and tried to emulate the great interpreters.

Like Gianluca, Bocelli also spent time singing during his childhood.  He gave his first concert in a small village not far from where he was born.  At the age of 14, he won his first song competition, the Margherita d’Oro in Viareggio with “O Sole Mio.”  Does this not sort of parallel what we know of Gianluca’s start in singing?

Andrea has gone on to show the world his greatness not only in music, but in philanthropy and charitable work.  Gianluca has been doing the same giving of his time and talent to various charitable organizations and important causes close by his home town.

I see Gianluca being so positively influenced by not only his extraordinary parents and family, but by watching and learning from this great man as well.  Andrea gave him powerful words of advice upon winning that memorable competition...“Always think with the mind, Sing with your voice and listen to your heart.”   Look where the power of his dreams has brought him to this day.  

When introducing Andrea Bocelli during one of her Christmas specials, Celine Dion said, “if God would have a singing voice, he must sound a lot like Andrea Bocelli.”  I think it’s safe to say the same when talking about the voices of the men of Il Volo.


Photo credit to All Things Il Volo

Story excerpts from Wikipedia




20 thoughts on “Personally Speaking ~ An Idol Becomes a Friend ~”

  1. Jane, this is stunning! Just a few years ago it would have been a giant blunder to compare anyone to Bocelli, much less three young boys attempting opera. But it’s our wondearfully talented Il Volo your talking about. Even Bocelli, early on, could see Gianluca’s bright future.

    I keep remembering an interview when Piero was asked if he was going to sing opera soon. He replied not until he was around 40 would he/they be ready for such an undertaking. Well Piero, I guess you were wrong. With the training and dedication they have invested in their future, much to our delight, they were indeed ready.

    Thank you Jane for another post that only adds to my love and respect for those marvelous three.

  2. Jane, you and the other Flight Crew ladies always have the best posts. How true what you wrote. Makes us appreciate IL Volo all the more, if that is possible.

  3. Such wonderful piece Jane. Thank you so much. I wonder if Il Volo will sometime do a concert with Bocelli as they did with Placido Domingo. One can dream !!

  4. Jane, what a splendid post!! One reason I love this site is so I can read thoughts and facts from fellow ilvolovers such as you! Our love and devotion to these three guys is hard to explain, but it’s real! Thanks so much! Keep up the good work!!♡♡♡from Texas with love, Dot!

  5. Thank you for your beautiful comments. This post was a joy to write! If any of you want to read a really good book I highly recommend Andrea Bocelli’s autobiography…ANDREA BOCELLI THE MUSIC OF SILENCE A MEMOIR. Beautifully written. Comes in an Italian as well as an English version. Will give you all the more respect and admiration for what this man has accomplished in life. Michele T., having been a part of his career, is also written about in here. Very interesting book!

  6. Such a great post, Jane. That incident that you mention when Gian won the contest when he was just a “baby” and Andrea sent the video of his congratulations, is so touching. The sweet expressions on GG’s face and the emotional tears are so endearing. And also endearing is the fact that he has retained that sensitive, sweet
    persona over the ensuing years. Thanks for recommending Andrea’s book…I will certainly want to read it.

  7. …“Always think with the mind, Sing with your voice and listen to your heart.” This says so much! Gianluca and the boys have certainly followed this way of thinking. Such an exciting time for them and for us! I believe a quote like this from Andrea Bocelli applies to all of us no matter what our ages. If we engage our hearts, our minds and sing our own songs we can’t help but make our dreams come true! So glad I looked at the sight today Jane, I NEEDED this reminder, thank you. Everyone have a great day!

  8. Wonderful post, Jane!!! Always loved Andrea Bocelli ‘s music! His PBS Specials are so beautiful! Very nice that Gianluca & family have become friends. Our precious trio have heeded this good advice while following their dreams!!!

  9. Andrea Bocelli has always been a big favorite of mine. I enjoyed your post immensely, Jane. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if our guys could have a concert with Andrea Bocelli, just as they did with Placido Domingo? I can’t help but wonder if Andrea’s handsome son can sing also.

  10. I read your comments and I am sorry but I am a little bit colder towards Bocelli . I state that I have always loved , already ‘ since the night he came first in the youth section of Sanremo . Its success is always rose as high and he has become more like the opera and I ‘ve always had a lot of pride and respect for him . The episode of TI LASCIO UNA CANZONE in which he gave the message to Gianluca I loved him, almost advice from father to son . All this until the children were never to be considered as antagonists . Lately Bocelli in interviews to direct questions about the boys IL VOLO responded so that I did not like .
    Immediately after Sanremo to the question what do you think about the boys IL VOLO Bocelli responded “They are very lucky guys . ” After participating in BOCELLI AND ZANETTI same question , same answer . No compliment to be accrued , for having studied and made ​​sacrifices , for their achievements . Nothing , just luck ? Perhaps journalists have reported only the sentences that they were comfortable, but I have remained a little bad . By a person who has had almost the same path they expect something more to gratification of our boys .

  11. This is a wonderful side story. Thank you for including it. Last November when Gianluca met with Jeannette and myself we talked mostly of Fan Faire but for a brief moment the talk went to other singers that are regular at the MGM and Gianluca was interested to hear that Bocelli is here every December. He always pulls in a good crowd.
    My point was to hint that Il Volo should be “a regular ” each year at one of the Vegas places.

  12. Comment for the above : Behind the scenes he can run “hot and cold”. But sometimes a person remains friends anyway.

  13. Jane: Great post. What is also amazing about Mr. Bocelli is that he studied hard and got a law degree. Very impressive for someone with his disability. I bought that book many years ago. It was so interesting of how he didn’t let his loss of eyesight make him give up on life and what anyone can do, no matter what.

  14. It’s funny, as I was driving the other day and listening to my new Il Volo CD I called my friend and said to her “I just heard angels sing!!!” While I’ve been following them since their first concert in Detroit and know the magnificence of their voices, when I heard Piero sing the chorus of Ave Maria on the Notte Magica CD the earth move and the hairs on my arm stood out straight and I cried. What power and beauty in his voice!!!! I told her that when I think of angels worshipping and praising God this is what I imagine, not cute cherubs but might Serphim with powerful voices…… that is our Piero!!!! These 3 young men from Italy have brought joy and happiness in my life through what has been the hardest 3yrs of my life. They are my angels here on earth!!!! Gianluca, Ignazio and Piero I hope one day that you will understand, I mean really understand and appreciate what you mean to us and how much you have changed our lives!!!

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