We’ve recently had so many intriguing posts about the Verona concert, the latest Il Volo TV interview, and the history of Il Volo, that I took a short break from writing and translating (while I worked at my day job)! In any case, Flight Crew still wanted you to get the translation of an Il Volo interview article that appeared in Famiglia Cristiana magazine right before the Verona concert.
The Famiglia Cristiana article pursued some of the things many other interviewers have already asked the guys: their memories, their feelings about returning to the stage, upcoming recordings. But this article touched on one or two things that most of the media don’t usually get Il Volo to talk about: supporting each other during crises, their faith, prayer, marriage, starting a family. See if you agree with me that overall, Ignazio said the least, but revealed the most.
The Cover Story Title is “Exclusive: Il Volo at the Arena of Verona in Concert for Morricone. Once Again in Front of the Public.” The cover quote from the guys is “Our Strength? It’s Our Friendship and Our Faith.”
This posting will be a little different than my previous ones, because I am giving you the actual magazine pages, so we can enjoy the whole thing together. I put the translation of the call-out boxes into our own call-out boxes. In case some of the magazine pages aren’t super sharp, we have also embedded some of the original shots here and there for you to enjoy.
(Each image in this post can be clicked on to view a larger version.)
As you can see below, the inside headline, besides repeating the cover, adds: “The Three Singers of Il Volo are the Stars of a Concert in Honor of Ennio Morricone, Whom We Lost One Year Ago.
When I first saw this article, it added to my impression that the Verona concert was dedicated to more different people than any other show I’ve ever heard. Daniela’s and my translations of the stage talk from the concert over the past month showed that in addition to the show being dedicated to the memory of Maestro Ennio Morricone, Ignazio dedicated the concert to those we lost during the pandemic, and Piero dedicated it to Ignazio’s late father Vito. Now, at the bottom of this magazine article, we see Gianluca’s statement “I’m dedicating this show to my grandfather Ernesto who recovered from the [Corona] virus. It’s he who helped me discover the westerns of Sergio Leone.”
Sergio Leone, as you probably know is the Italian film director whose “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly” featured Maestro Morricone’s music, and like the other two films in that trilogy, A Fistful of Dollars and For a Few Dollars More, added up to help make Clint Eastwood a star. Leone also directed the “Once Upon a Time” series of western films. Given Leone’s Italia origins, he is the founder of the style that came to be called “Spaghetti Westerns.”
So, without further ado, here’s the translation of the article by Eugenio Arcidiacono. [Based on his name, he may actually be an archdeacon].
“The interview takes place remotely, with the three Il Volo guys linked by video from their homes. But on June 5 will put them back together again for the first big concert in Italy with the public (a live audience) since the start of the pandemic: 6 thousand people will listen to them in the Arena di Verona during their tribute to Ennio Morricone one year after his loss (and the lucky ticketholders will be allowed to return home later than the curfew hour). Many more are those who will follow them on TV, live on RAI1 and in other countries of the world, from the United States to Japan. A great challenge after a year and a half of inactivity for Piero Barone, Gianluca Ginoble and Ignazio Boschetto.“
“We’re only thinking about one thing: finally, we get to sing. We couldn’t stand it anymore!” exclaims Piero. “We prepared for months, partly because for us it’s a totally new repertoire, with the exception of Il Più Ti Penso, a song that was constructed by blending themes from Once Upon a Time in America and from Malèna, which we included in our first album.
EA: Did any of the other tracks have lyrics written purposely for you?
Ignazio: “No, they’ve already been performed with lyrics. The only “gem” is Ecstasy of Gold from the Good the Bad and the Ugly: the Morricone family gave it lyrics, so it was a debut performance.
Gianluca: “There have been so many tributes to Morricone, but this will be the very first time for a tribute done by a male group. A tribute that will be translated to a CD that will come out after the summer. Andrea Morricone came to us in the recording studio and will be a guest on the stage to conduct some of his father’s music.”
EA: You’ve been conducted by Ennio Morricone in concert in the Piazza Del Popolo in Rome in 2011. You weren’t even 20 years old. What memories do you have?
Gianluca: “It’s true, we return to being children when we think of him. We were really naïve. I remember that during the general rehearsals with a one-hundred-piece orchestra he gave me the cue to start singing, but I didn’t start. Morricone turned to me [for not starting], and then I said to him, “So you give me the start cue?’ I saw the first violinist turn white [with shock] because I addressed the maestro as “tu” [the familiar/intimate form of you, which is not supposed to be used to conductors and music directors]. But he just smiled at me and said to me ‘Guys, don’t worry about it. I’ll deal with it.’”
EA: What is the first film with his music that you saw?
Piero: “Nuovo Cinema Paradiso. As a real Sicilian I recognized myself in that little boy who wanted to get away from his homeland to find his own way, and who listened to the adult he was most attached to, who counseled him to not get trapped by nostalgia. I’ve only cried a few times in my life, but when I saw it and heard that poignant music, I melted like a popsicle.”
Piero stops, and begins to hum the theme song from Nuovo Cinema Paradiso. “Who knows these notes? With our concert we want to make our audience take a dip into their past, rediscovering the emotions they experienced the first time they saw these films.”
Gianluca: “I, on the other hand, am fond of westerns, because I watched them with my Grandfather Ernesto, whom I’m extremely attached to. When I let him hear The Good, the Bad and the Ugly sung by us, he got very excited. I dedicate the concert and the CD to him, because at 87 years old he became sick with COVID and took a month in the hospital to recover. We were very scared, but in the end, he made it.”
EA: The concert was originally expected to be in St. Peter’s Square, but instead became the season opener in the Arena of Verona.
Piero: “We thought of St. Peter’s Square because Morricone was from Rome, but they didn’t have the conditions to guarantee [everyone’s] safety there. At the Arena of Verona, on the other hand, these conditions were present and it’s as magical a place as any, and recognized all over the world. But we still want to return to St. Peter’s Square as soon as possible.”
EA: Morricone has also composed musical scores thick with spirituality. Will you also perform one of those?
Gianluca: “In Fantasy, a track based on the theme of Gabriel’s Oboe, from the film Mission, one of the most mystical melodies ever composed by the master, accompanied by words like “In fantasy exists a warm wind which blows over the cities, like a friend. I dream of souls that are forever free.”
EA: As ambassadors of Italian music to the world, what do you think about Maneskin’s victory at the Eurofestival?
Piero: “We’re very happy. They are young people with great personality who present an “unpublished” side of Italian music to the outside: rock.”
Gianluca: “They do a completely different genre than ours, but we like them. We don’t listen to lyric music from morning to night. I grew up with David Bowie and Elton John.”
EA: In these months of forced inactivity, how has the relationship among you been, especially as friends?
Piero: “We got to know each other better. We talked a great deal, not just about music; and above all, we learned how to listen to each other.”
EA: How do you feel about those three child prodigies who in 2009 appeared on Ti Lascio Una Canzone?
Piero: Much tenderness, but also pride. We have been fortunate but also good at not getting sucked into the most ephemeral, fleeting parts of show business. We have managed not to lose contact with reality, because we have always remained anchored to our families.
EA: All three of you are believers and practicing [Catholics]. What reflections have sustained you in these times we’re living in?
Ignazio: “Like Piero said, this pandemic has made us grow as persons, because we have held each other up in difficult times, like the death of my father and the illness of Gianluca’s grandfather. But our faith has been fundamental in helping us. Prayer, in particular, has proven its power.”
EA: After the Arena of Verona, you won’t be doing concerts [in Italy] for the rest of the year. You can take advantage of this to start having your families.
Gianluca: “I’m still such a kid, that I can’t imagine myself as a father.”
Piero: “For sure, the first of us to get married will be Ignazio.”
Ignazio: “Yes, it’s true that I have always dreamed of a wife and children. With the job I do it’s not easy. But I’ve been working on it…”
Credit to Famiglia Cristiana and owners of all photos.