After the beautiful Christmas performance of Il Volo in St. Peter’s Square, I followed with interest the various comments under the video published on YouTube by RAI.
Among the many compliments and some (but very few) comments of Italians who said that the boys are obnoxious and arrogant, I noticed a nice comment made by an Italian man Christian Panico, who I discovered to be an Italian singer with a tenor voice.
His comment went something like this:
“I don’t understand this aversion to Il Volo, they are good and I personally met Ignazio Boschetto, a nice guy, good and very helpful.”
I got very curious, it’s really rare here in Italy that other tenor voices compliment our guys, so I looked for other news on his Facebook page and here’s what I found.
Really many, many compliments Christian Panico, you have a beautiful voice . . . very beautiful your performance of Grande Amore!
This beautiful video is accompanied by these words from Christian: “The Italian bel canto in the world, the new generation that goes on and represents us. Three clean faces, three good guys, I like this thing! Well done, you deserve your success! Here is my little gift for you.”
Double honor to you Christian, who sincerely recognize the success and merit of these guys.
I read that you too have a story similar to theirs, you have a beautiful voice that deserves success, but you had to leave Italy to have it. You are known and successful in eastern Europe, but I admit that I, here in Italy, had never heard of you.
On Christian’s page, there is also a photo of the meeting with Ignazio.
And this is his comment on the photo!
“Curious about life! You are leaving for Iceland and who do you meet at the airport bar while we ask for a vegan croissant together? Ignazio Boschetto from Il Volo. Is he vegan too? He too is a tenor … He is also very nice and a very simple and humble person. He has all my respect for this, very helpful, we had a quick chat, they went to do a concert, I instead spent 12 days in Iceland, before resuming work on my recording project.”
Then I found this beautiful video.
Listen to the beautiful voice of Christian Panico in this beautiful “cover” of THE SOUND OF SILENCE, translated into Italian IL SUONO DEL SILENZIO.
And therefore, I decided to contact Christian Panico and asked him if he wanted to answer some of my questions.
He was extremely kind and immediately accepted.
So here’s his little interview:
1) I know you accidentally met Ignazio at the airport. Did you already know him or was it your first meeting?
Hello! I did not know him and I have to thank my mother who recognized him even though he had a mask … We were in the airport and it was the first time I met him.
2) Did you also meet Piero and Gianluca?
Unfortunately no. Ignazio was on his way to them but I don’t like being intrusive even though I admit I would have liked to have a chat with them.
3) You wrote that Ignazio was immediately nice and helpful. What do you think about the fact that these guys are often accused of being obnoxious and arrogant, thanks to what our journalists have always written?
I only met Ignazio and seemed to be talking to a friend, very helpful and nice, a really nice surprise. In short, Il Volo are now among the most famous Italian singers in the world and could certainly be “full of themselves.” (But Ilvolovers know they are not!)
The journalists? I don’t know what to tell you … In no uncertain terms, maybe those who speak badly do it because they don’t take money, like those who speak well of those who make music, which I wouldn’t dare call music, like Trap, and the like. There are also those who write well about that stuff, so anything is possible!
4) As a vocal coach, do you think Piero, Ignazio and Gianluca have had vocal study commitments during these years? What do you think of their vocal background?
I am sure that they have taken lessons over the years. There is a vocal growth that is not just their own thing. I would be surprised to be proved wrong, but anything can be … Even Bocelli himself confessed to me in one of our meetings that he had studied and continues to study even now.
I don’t want to hurt others, but I think Ignazio is the most vocally gifted. I think Piero studies a lot and there have been significant improvements and that Gianluca has a very beautiful timbre, a beautiful voice quality.
5) Have you heard about the next project dedicated to “Morricone”, what do you think?
No, I didn’t know anything about it. In my interpretations, too, I paid homage to the teacher with a piece that is very close to my heart (I was also moved while I was singing it). Morricone’s disappearance was a great loss.
6) Would you give vocal coach lessons to Il Volo or have you already given them? In case, how did you find yourself?
They will certainly have more qualified and talented teachers than me, even if I have taught professional tenors from Japan to Russia, a country where I have achieved some success as a singer. I would love to sing with them, but also among us, for to have some fun, who knows … Never say never!
7) You have a beautiful voice and undisputed vocal skills, as well as heart, you also have a strong technique due to study, which today is rarely found in most young singers, yet radio and TV spur relentlessly to follow these singers often out of breath, what do you think about this?
They are killing the music! That’s all … Probably, those who decide and move the gears of the music world and beyond, want us stupid! There are no other explanations. Being a singer is a profession and as such must be taken seriously, you must be prepared and do it by professionals and not improvised.
Instead, now there is the fashion to see success, people with no art or part, as if they wanted us to understand that to become famous (and not singers, which is very different) you don’t need to be a good singer or have studied. I do not think that in 30 years we will listen to the music these gentlemen produce, on the contrary I am sure that we will listen to the great hits of thirty years ago, which we still listen to today. You draw the conclusions.
8) Il Volo had its first real successes abroad and then, consequently, managed to establish itself in Italy as well. You too have had a similar approach, you have been successful in Russia and in Eastern Europe and despite your skill you have often been hindered here in Italy. Why does Italy struggle so hard to recognize deserving people?
Il Volo had the opportunity to get off to a good start here in Italy with a television program that gave it visibility. I too was one of the singers of the great Paolo Limiti (a good songwriter and host of Italian music programs), whom I remember with great affection, a great professional.
I missed the period after the debut …… Il Volo had the TOP in Italy as management. I have not had the same luck, perhaps that is the missing piece for me in Italy. Italy is not a meritocratic country and honestly I have not understood how the music world works in Italy either. If I hadn’t been a good singer I wouldn’t have been successful in Russia or I wouldn’t have had 10,000,000 views with my Italian HALLELUJAH on Facebook. I am very sorry not to be able to break through here in Italy, in my country. I had to be born in another era.😑
9) What do you think of the current Italian music scene?
One word DRAMATIC!
Except for rare cases. The thing that leaves me speechless is to see that not even the Big of music, are no longer able to pull off real hits, as they did in the past.
We are experiencing the musical Middle Ages, as a historical period.
10) What do you think of talent shows?
Maybe I’m the cause of this situation ????
I think they are not meritocrats like those of other countries and I assure you that there are people who are very deserving talents. Indescribable talents … Back from Russia, I also tried to audition for some reality shows and you think that I didn’t even pass the first audition! I remember in particular one for XFactor and I want to tell you about it. I went from Rome to Milan to participate in the selection. They let me into one of the many small rooms and there was a 20 year old boy there, alone, without a microphone and he asked me to sing 60 seconds of a song, guess which one? “Grande Amore” by Il Volo.
After singing, he gives me many compliments and then tells me: “But they don’t take you anyway.”
Surprised, I asked him why and he replied: “Because we are looking for something different. Even today I don’t understand what this ‘different’ is.
This year I auditioned for ‘All Together Now’ and this time after four auditions, I arrived in the top 28 but in the end Ricci (program author), told me that I was good, nice but they were looking for “other” and he put me as a backup. Unfortunately for me it is fortunately for the competitors, no one retired. 😑
Mine is a very difficult job, but I love it, I love to sing, it is the truest expression of my soul. I am naked at that moment and I will never betray the music, which has given me so much. This is why I sing, if I am successful, I will be happy but only because more people can listen to me and because I will have the opportunity to do many beautiful things!
Greetings to all and ‘Hurray Il Volo’ , you are the Italian pride, keep it up!”
And since Christian Panico mentioned his Italian version of “HALLELUJAH” in his answers, I propose you listen to it, you will not regret it!
Grazie Mille Christian, it was nice to be able to interview you.
It was a real pleasure meeting you, you are a good artist as well as a good person, you have talent, you have technique, you deserve great success and we wish you so with all our heart.
For those wishing to get to know Christian Panico better, here are his links:
Credit to owners of all photos and videos.