Looking back over the last thirteen years, I see many changes along the way but never a departure from their style. They may sing different songs, but they never depart from their operatic pop. They introduce new music, but they never depart from where they started. They present the old with the new.
Their music is Operatic pop or popera. What is this movement? It’s singing Opera in a more classical style. While opera is very strict and regimented, popera is more ethereal it has a lighter feeling, and it moves freely. It takes away the hard edges of opera and replaces it with a more ethereal feel while still presenting the drama and the high notes of the opera. 
This along with the classical Neapolitan songs became a big draw. Why did it work? One reason, three amazing voices! If the voices weren’t there, it wasn’t going to sell.

So, let’s begin this Musical Journey….
I’ve been writing about the lives of Piero, Ignazio and Gianluca from the day they were born to the present day. 
As I wrote each story, there were certain highlights in some stories that I thought should be put aside and revisited in another article. These were, what I consider, moments to remember.

Of course, before I begin, I have to mention the fourth episode of Ti Lascio Una Canzone and the boys singing, “O Sole Mio.” They walked out on the stage, sang “O Sole Mio” and walked off stars!  
The rest is history!
Their musical journey begins in Los Angeles….

February 12, 2010 “We Are the World for Haiti”
I’m sure many of you have never seen the official video of We Are the World 25 For Haiti. It’s amazing! Look at our guys singing with some great American singers! Legends! Just the beginning of their journey but the guys would become legends in their own right!
In 2010 shortly after arriving in America, the guys were invited by Quincy Jones to join “We Are the World for Haiti,” together with 80 international artists such as Celine Dion, Bono, Lady Gaga, Carlos Santana, Barbra Streisand, Enrique Iglesias, Usher, Natalie Cole to name a few. Il Volo were the only Italian artists to be invited. The three voices from the background caused such a sensation. “Who was that?” Everyone present couldn’t believe what they were hearing but, “Who were they?” Soon they would find out!

May 2011, Il Volo, American Idol 
By far the performance that set them on the road to success! There was no turning back after this! They stole the heart of America!

October 25, 2011, the recording of “Tous le visages de l’ amour”
For me, this is one of those moments that you don’t forget. Look at these amazing teenagers. They are singing in French perhaps for the first time. Look at how professional they are. This is only two years after they met! Each one is developing his part and by the end of the recording they bring their three amazing voices together.

2012 “Back to Brooklyn Tour” with Barbara Streisand

In 2012 Barbra Streisand invited the guys to be an integral part of her “Back to Brooklyn” tour. They performed with her in America and Canada. They were not an opening act, no, they shared the stage with Barbara. To the guys this was a dream come true!

2014 Latin Billboard Music Awards 

In 2013, “Más Que Amor” was certified “Gold” in Mexico and Argentina. And this catapulted the guys into the Latin market. From that day on they took the Latin market by storm. 
In February 2014, at the Latin Billboard Music Awards they receive two nominations “Top Latin Albums Artist of the Year, Duo or Group” and “Latin Pop Albums Artist of the Year, Duo or Group.” At the awards show they were awarded as “Best Group of the Year in the Latin Pop Album” category and they also won the “El Pulso Social Award,” as the artist who dominated interactions on social networking sites during the Billboard Awards. This is unheard of! Three Italian kids taking over the Latin market! What a win!

December 21, 2014, The Christmas Concert at the Italian Senate
Ignazio wrote in their book: “We want to talk about the thrill of singing in front of the highest offices of state! What twenty-year-old boy has something like that happen? It happened to us, and it seems to me a beautiful result, an honor. You cannot imagine the emotional feeling to be called “guests of honor” inside the Senate. We were accompanied by the, fantastic, Filarmonia Orchestra Veneta conducted by Diego Basso. Half the beauty of the song is in the orchestra.
The most exciting moments? Everyone! But the hymn of Mameli was the heart-pounding one, the first song, singing in that place, with everyone singing along with us, including Giorgio Napolitano, (President) and Pietro Grasso (President of the Senate). It is one thing that I cannot explain.
And then, of course, the pleasure of shaking hands with the President of the Republic and of feeling that he knows Marsala, he has been there.
I have to say that when the guys sang ‘O Sole Mio with the children signing in the background, I got very choked up. It was very emotional for me! And the whole Senate seemed to be emotional too! An absolutely beautiful moment!

2015 Sanremo Music Festival
On February 14, 2015, the guys participated in and won the Sanremo Music Festival with “Grande Amore.” This is the top award in the Music Industry in Italy. With this win the guys really came home. They were finally recognized by the Italian people. This win also gave them the opportunity to represent Italy at the Eurovision Song Contest 2015. 

2015 Eurovision
As Italy is a member of the Big Five, Il Volo went straight into the Grand Final of the Eurovision Song Contest, which was held in Vienna on May 23, 2015. Grande Amore came in 3rd with 292 points but, they won the televote with 366 points and won the Marcel Bezencon Press Award, as best song according to the collective voting of the accredited press.
The extended play Sanremo Grande Amore was released in Italy on February 20, 2015, and it was certified triple platinum by FIMI. The people speak!

July 1, 2016 “Notte Magica” Piazza Santa Croce in Florence

2016-2017 were the years dedicated to the “Notte Magica” project, the tribute to the 1990 event where the Three Tenors, Josè Carreras, Placido Domingo and Luciano Pavarotti, enchanted the whole world from the stage of the Baths of Caracalla.
On July 1st in Piazza Santa Croce in Florence Il Volo presented on stage “Notte Magica – A Tribute to the Three Tenors,” which was broadcast in prime time on Canale 5.  The guys were joined by Placido Domingo who conducted the orchestra. This marked the beginning of the world tour of “Notte Magica – A Tribute to The Three Tenors” which debuted on March 4, 2017 at the Radio City Music Hall in New York. The show was sold out. After 15 stops in the United States, all sold out, the tour is extended to Europe from May 5, 2017, for 29 performances and from September it extended to Latin America. The concert “Notte Magica – Tribute to the Three Tenors” was filmed and broadcast in the United States by the national television network PBS, and in Italy by Canale 5 and, starting in June, it was broadcast in over 500 cinemas in Italy and around the world.

Jul 5, 2017, Ignazio Conducts the Asti Symphony Orchestra 
During the rehearsals of the last date of the Notte Magica Tour in Naples, Ignazio stepped  in as conductor of the Symphonic Orchestra of Asti while Maestro Marcello Rota sang Ignazio’s tenor part! They sang “Libiam ne lieti calici.” Ignazio had everyone in awe of his performance as a conductor. The guys enjoyed singing with Marcello who usually conducts for their Concerts. Gianluca enjoyed it so much that he hugged Marcella in the middle of the song! All good sports! They all had lots of fun! A unique performance!

Jan 27, 2019  World Youth Day 
If you ask the guys after winning Sanremo, which truly brought them home, “What was your greatest performance,” they would probably answer, singing for the Holy Father at World Youth Day. I know for Piero it was one of the most amazing events in his life!

June 5, 2021, The Tribute to Ennio Morricone
When I wrote about this event I said, “I’m going to use the word phenomenal a lot in this article.” Let’s relieve the opening of this fantastic concert!
I can write at least five pages just on the opening of the concert. If I wrote what I felt, saw, experienced in this concert, I would have to write a book!

Let’s set the scene!
The first note and we immediately know it’s “The Ecstasy of Gold.” The whistle of the wind!
The setting is gold! Then white! Then gold! Look at the gold flecks that come in and out! The orchestra vibrates! Each note intensifies our senses. We’re drawn to the back of the stage. To a tunnel where we know our guys will appear! The focus is always rear center stage! The lights change to intense red and now we are looking at the stage from the back of the arena. We are coming forward. The shadow of Il Volo turns into a force that is coming towards us! The theme of the concert is set!
Listen to the intensity of their voices! What force! Watch their motions. Look at Gianluca! Watch his body react to the music! The fist that comes at you saying this is the punch, just the beginning.  Listen to how Ignazio rides the note that guides us into the story! Now we’re sailing on the wind! Piero intensifies the moment with his powerful voice that says the journey has begun! Follow us!
The scenery is in motion again. In the background, the movie comes into view and blends with the voices! Everything on the stage comes to life! We’re now inside the film. Even the guys are taken by the movement around them. They look around and they are feeling the moment! Andrea Morricone steps up the music and we step back and look, in amazement at what is before us!
What exactly is before us? A work of art! A Titian painting. In Venice there is a very magnificent painting by Titian called the Assumption. It is a painting in motion! Believe me, when I tell you what you are looking at on that stage is a Titian painting. Titian was known for his movement in painting! Titian was 24 years old when he painted the Assumption. Our guys are in their mid-twenties and they have painted the scene before you. If you don’t know the renaissance artist Titian, Google him! You’ll understand what is going on here!
Now let me explain what is before you. Movement. Lots of movement.
Take a look at the stage! You the audience are the spectators! You’re being drawn to the stage. You watch the guys’ approach and, you are in awe of their presence. You feel the intensity of the music, you and the guys are pulled into the movie. The music is all around you!  Their voices are a force in your head. You look up in amazement! You are a part of the scenery! You are a part of the orchestra! You are a part of the movie! You are a part of ~ Il Volo!  You have arrived and you are ready to follow the guys no matter where this journey leads you! It’s only the beginning! Fasten your seat belts. Phenomenal! 

You will note this is out of order. Let’s backtrack…. I want to show you what has happened with these guys over the years. As I said in the beginning, they were with all these legends in the music industry. Now they have become legends! But what I want you to see is in the beginning they worked with many people to start on this amazing road. Now they have moved to another place. A place where they present themselves. A place where they bring all the magic together! We see this in The Tribute to Morricone, but this started long before then. Let’s go to Luna Park October 2019.  Here you will see a magical moment!
October 30, 2019, Il Volo at Luna Park Buenos Aires Por Una Cabeza
I will end by going back to the beginning. This last moment tells me how far the guys have come and how the strangers became brothers.
When these three young men started out, they were 15 and 16 years old. Think of being 15 or 16 years old and you have a dream, and someone tells you that that dream, needs to be shared. To fulfill that dream you have to leave your family, your friends, your home, you have to go to another country, and you have to share this journey with two people who you really know nothing about except that they had the same dream you did. You have to trust that the decision that was made by you and your family, was the right decision. If not, it’s back to square one! You’re going to be lonely, and you have to learn to survive without the people you love. So, you learn to lean on one another. That dependence turns into a friendship and that friendship into a brotherhood. It enabled them to trust enough to collaborate and perfect something truly amazing. Something that revolutionized the music industry. Let me go further by showing you a collaboration by these three amazing, very, very talented, young men that is so unreal that it boggles your mind. This is a collaboration of love. You will notice that the whole Orchestra is in awe and Giampiero Grani can’t stop smiling. Stop and listen to this performance of “Por Una Cabeza”.

Look at how they smile at one another during the performance. A smile that says yes that’s it! Their faces are ablaze! Their expressions let one another know that it works. And, finally, when it’s over, they are so excited they can hardly contain themselves. Look at their faces lit up in joy and their embrace says it all! They are brothers who love one another! This is truly a moment to remember!
It’s ironic that when I started this story, I was randomly choosing moments in their lives that were very memorable. There are so many memorable moments, but I had to limit how many I could use.  I had no idea when I started this musical journey that I would end up with thirteen events. How appropriate! One for every one of the Thirteen Amazing Years they’ve been together!
Join me next week as I go back Through the Fields of My Mind and open the door to a new adventure!
If you would like to share a story with me, please email:
To read more Il Volo stories visit us at
Credit to owners of all photos and videos



  1. I look forward to reading these stories about our fabulous guys. I can’t thank you enough for the time and dedication you put into this. It is great to know what went on and how they developed into the award winning trio that they are.thank you again, I look forward to reading more.

  2. Susan, your articles are such a blessing to me! I’ve loved these young men since the beginning and appreciate keeping up with and re-living the events in their lives! THANK YOU ❣️

  3. Susan, you are a magnificent story teller! I had a laugh out of Marcello Rota singing opera, then the glorious Ave Maria at the Vatican and couldn’t stop the tears when they sang Por Una Cabeza. Such love and affection was so evident, you had to feel it, too. Thanks so much, again, Susan. Dolores

  4. What a fantastic 13 years these have been for 3 young guys. !! Thank you so much Susan for bringing the highlights to us, and thank you guys for daring to make your dreams come true. The sky is the limit , and possibly even beyond, as your voices bring so much pleasure and you are such a great example for others to follow. Looking forward to seeing you again in person at Sunrise Florida on October 2022.

  5. Susan traveling through Il Volo’s journey in this way was an interesting and enjoyable experience. It solidified that they were carefully and premeditatedly guided in the planning of these 13 years. Thanks to their beginning with Gatica, O’Brien, Renis and of course the experienced hand of Torpedine. Even today they don’t just “do” anything. Their exceptional voices and still developing talent sustain them to careful excellence. Thank you for this view.

  6. Love your stories as they explain every detail snd are in English too a bonus !
    Thankyou ❤️

  7. It’s always a treat Susan on Wednesday to get your latest commentary.
    YouTube stores most of the old videos from the beginning of this great story. I love to watch them all with my iPad and fire stick. There’s one that won’t make the thirteen but will always tell it’s own story. Dec. 2018, Zagreb (Poland?). During “O Sole Mio”, Ignazio loses his grip and his key and goes into a laughing fit, leaves the microphone and continues his laughing fit behind Gianluca on the stage. G and P pick up his part weakly. Ignazio collects himself, returns to the mic and stops the orchestra with a great sweep of arms. He picks up the song with a fabulous acapella and brings the house down while Gianluca waves his arms yelling “applausa” and Piero claps and laughs.

    A beautiful example of their ability to handle anything together. Even their mistakes become a joyous event!

    1. Thanks, Boston Girl! I Googled Zagreb/Poland Dec. 2018 and found the video you were referring to. Igna certainly broke up with laughter and his buddies covered for him. Got quite a kick out of watching him keeping time with the music by nodding his head and bouncing on his feet. Never a dull moment with these wonderful entertainers! Hugs, Dolores.

  8. Thankyou so much, it is such a joy to share these wonderful stories I so look forward to each “chapter”. As a newish fan ( 2 years now) There is always something new to all the wonderful videos you share….these boys are such and inspiration so wonderfully wholesome and “normal” and so full of love for what they do.I hope they know how much joy and pleasure they bring to our lives.
    Much love from downunder🦘🇦🇺

  9. Thank you for another wonderful story. Always looking forward to the next one. Love these guys and after your words about them make them even more lovable.

  10. The president of the senate was singing along with Gianluca! I think the song was an old Italian standard from back in the day. I could tell he was really enjoying the concert. How old was the President of Italy?

  11. A note to DB and Roz, if and when you ever have a bad day, go to YouTube Il Volo Ignazio Incidents. Fix you right up!

    DB, you and I have a lot in common beside Il Volo and Irish roots. How about a birth date in the 1930s? Not too many of those around. Roz?

    1. Thanks flower, will have a look see. It always amazes me how he can be funny without actually doing or saying anything. He just puts on ‘a look’ and I laugh. 😉 😉 😉

      Nope, even ‘himself’ can only make a claim for just after the 30’s, as in September 1940! When we moved to this bungalow fourteen years ago, was it really that long(?) I was the youngest on the estate. Had I been on my own I wouldn’t have been allowed to put in a bid with the council for it as I wasn’t over 60. As it was we only got it because the council were knocking down our previous estate, so they had to rehouse us somewhere.

      I will be 74 next month, and in all honesty I don’t feel it. Age is definitely a number, and I am not going to say what that number might be in my case! 😉


      1. Ladies, you’re only as old as the man that you feel. Proven fact.

      2. Or even want to……………. That makes me 28 then!!! 😉

        Ooooo I think we are getting into very deep and ever so hot water here. 😉


    2. I knew there was something i liked about you! I’m just getting over a full weekend of birthday parties for my 90th! Have to rest up for the next five years before another BIG set of parties! Hugs, Dolores

      1. Go on, have one every year love. Now shhhhh, but I may be converting Christine. I mentioned the double CD/DVD Tribute to the Three Tenors Kate has bought me for my birthday, though I have been good and not opened it yet. As she was a fan of theirs she said she would look into buying it. Sooooo who knows, she might just become a fan. 🙂

  12. Dearest Susan….I hardly know how to express my emotions as I type. These young men have had my heart since I first saw them perform in Detroit for the PBS Special. Your descriptions and eloquent ways of writing about them is so beautiful. You lighten my heart, as they do, whenever I watch them sing and take in their voices into my soul. Thank you, thank you, Susan. God bless you and God bless our “boys’. xoxo

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