Fun and Games in Atlantic City by Giovanna

I’m from Colorado but made a trip home to New Jersey to have an Italian weekend with my old college buddy Biagio and his Calabrese family, my Venetian/Napolitana good friend Rosaria, my Aunt Florence whose family is from Avellino, and my cousin Ken.  I topped it all off with the Il Volo concert in Atlantic City – two more Siciliani and a Rosetone from Abruzzo. . .  With this crew, we had most of southern Italy covered.
The Atlantic City Borgata Casino concert proved to be many firsts for me.  In the past I’ve only heard Il Volo in outdoor venues in Italy.  This concert was my first time see Il Volo in the US, my first time to hear them in an indoor theater, my first time to attend a soundcheck, and my first time to hear them with my family and friends.
Since I had never attended an Il Volo soundcheck before, I had no idea how tense the guys can be before a performance, and how tough they are on themselves while they’re preparing for the show.  Our small group’s entry into the soundcheck was delayed several times because of Il Volo’s personal dynamic on the rehearsal stage that day.  I was surprised, but also impressed, by several things I observed.
1. Gianluca is a perfectionist and when critiquing the rehearsal, did not even spare himself.  Because some of us at the soundcheck understood Italian, the guys could not hide the sharp exchanges they do in Italian to get each song perfect.  For example, while we were walking in, Gian was urging Ignazio to change how he comes in on Nessun Dorma.  He was identifying note sbagliate (wrong notes) and some parts of the interpretation that made that song brutto (ugly).  He sang Ignazio’s entry and repeated it with a higher lift so they could hear and change it.
2.  Much to Ignazio’s credit, he listened patiently and adapted instantly.  When they sang Nessun Dorma in concert, it was perfect.  I was impressed with Ignazio’s flexibility, Gianluca’s professionalism, and how fast they shifted gears before showtime.  Despite the tough criticism and hard work beforehand, by the time the show opened, Gian was laughing, smiling, waving, and playing with the crowd like normal, and Gian and Igna were hugging and hanging all over each other, as usual.
3.  I had no idea Piero is such a complete and utter gentleman. He took the time to come downstage, talk to us and make us feel comfortable despite the working tension on stage.  He made us welcome, asked us about ourselves, and actually listened.  Throughout the rehearsal, he clued us in on which number they were going to rehearse next, and thanked us repeatedly for our patience.   He also jokingly asked if these front section seats were our actual seats during the show. For some of us, they were.  By the way, I never knew that Piero’s speaking voice when he’s right up close to you was so soft and dark.  He sings tenor but speaks in a velvety almost baritone.  He apparently never raises his speaking voice before a show, to save the volume and power for the stage.  Ragazzo intelligente.  Smart boy.
Piero had noticed how empty Atlantic City is for a beach town.  He wondered out loud to us what people actually do around there.  The answer? Giocano a carte e perdono soldi.  They play cards and lose money.   Piero himself had dragged some of the Il Volo crew down to the casino the previous night.  He insisted he didn’t lose any money.  Maybe that’s because he spent his time in the casino taking selfies with fans who spotted him.  A few of the fans I met during the VIP reception had done that.
At sound check, I took some close-up photos of each of the guys running around in their warm-up clothes, hanging all over Gianpiero’s piano, calling instructions to the sound guys, and visiting with us.  Sorry I cannot share the pictures.  Marianna, the fan manager at this location, said we could take all the soundcheck pictures we wanted, but insisted we cannot post any of them on social media.  The concert pictures are a different story.

On to the Show

First off, they did not wear any white suits this time, so Ignazio did not have to complain he looked like a white salami or an ice cream vendor.
After they opened with The Ecstasy of Gold, Piero explained what was so special about the Atlantic City Borgata Casino.  That helped me understand why the guys had been so stressed earlier that day.  I didn’t know that Il Volo’s very first concert on their first tour in the US, when they were young kids starting out, was on this exact stage at the Borgata.  The New Jersey, Delaware, and Philadelphia fans who come here every year were the first to accept them back when they were 16 years old.  Since then, the guys try to make every return performance there more powerful than the last one, so they put themselves under a lot of pressure.
Piero described Il Volo’s first Atlantic City concert describing themselves as novice performers, just young kids.  Ignazio described the three of them as little “cuties.”  Piero played dumb and insisted he didn’t understand what “cutie” is in English.  Piero asked the audience if they know what “cutie” sounds like to an Italian, then gave an Italian lesson.  In Italian it’s not “cutie,” it’s chiudi, as in chiudi la porta (shut the door).  Of course, nobody shut the door on them when they were young performers, which is partly why they are where they are today.
Piero promised they would perform some Italian favorites, some American favorites, some opera, and of course some selections from the late Maestro Morricone.  If you follow the Flight Crew you have all seen this season’s approximate song list in other postings, so I won’t repeat it.  I will highlight a few of the surprises I enjoyed, and some of the funnies.
I liked how they freshened up the act by replacing some of the solos. One of the new ones was Ignazio interpreting Celine Dionne’s version of “All by Myself,” even though that was not originally her song.  Gianluca wanted to know why Ignazio insisted on singing a song about “Obama’s Elf,” or at least that’s what it sounds like with Ignazio’s accent.
I was looking forward to Gianluca doing “If I Can Dream” because I heard him rehearsing it at the soundcheck.  He really nailed it for all its worth that night.  His version was hot, bluesy, and rocked in a way Elvis Presley never did.
The ragazzi reintroduced Tom Jones’ Delilah, which they have not done on stage in some years, but they added a twist.  They no longer finish the song with a shoving match as they used to do when they were teens.  This time, Piero added a remarkably long sustain, and Ignazio chose to almost growl his lines about “the knife in my hand” and “she laughed no more.”  They are not little boys any more.
I have never heard them do the Great Caruso or Funiculi Funicula in concert before, except on a CD.  Of course, Il Volo got drowned out by the front section of the audience who all know the words to Funiculi Funicula and insisted on singing along.  It reminded me of concerts in the Teatro Antico in Taormina.
Gianluca spent a good part of the concert patting Ignazio’s pancia (belly) and teasing him “No more cannoli for you.”  Ignazio claimed he had gained 10 kilos since the last tour, but didn’t care, then promptly told Gianluca to cut it out.  Igna recited to the audience the Italian expression Uomo di pancia, uomo di sostanza.  He didn’t translate it, but he didn’t have to with this very Italian-American audience.  (Man with a belly is a man of substance).  The fact is, he really doesn’t have a belly.
I had really liked Leonard Cohen’s Hallelujah from the first time I heard it in a Nicholas Cage movie.  I knew Gianluca and Ignazio have been doing it in the middle of their program as a memorial to those lost over the last two and a half years.  But I had no idea how moving and soulful their version is.
It was a delightful surprise that Piero and Ignazio chose to add La Donna e Mobile to the program.  Even though that piece has the most chauvinistic, insulting, anti-female lyrics ever written, it’s still a great song.  I took my daughter-in-law Anya to hear Verdi’s Rigoletto last summer performed by Central City Opera, so I have recently heard it live.  But Central City’s tenor couldn’t touch Il Volo’s two tenors, who simply blew him away.  Ignazio’s interpretation was creative and flat out powerful.  Piero revealed that when Ignazio first brought up the idea to duet this with him, Piero told him he was crazy.  However, they had so much fun practicing it with their voice coaches, they decided to let the rest of us in on the fun, and the result was amazing.
All the people I interviewed before the show wanted to send Auguri and other greetings to Ignazio on a card in anticipation of his birthday on October 4.  So, we collectively wrote him a handmade birthday card.  If you’ve ever heard Ignazio joking on American stages, he often laments that they don’t have decent Italian coffee like Lavazza or Illy in the US.  He also complains that Americans drink coffee in a mug the size of a swimming pool.  During soundcheck earlier in the day, I waved our handmade card to ask him if I could send it up to the stage later during the show.  He thumbed up that it would be OK.  But I deliberately didn’t show the back of it to him at that time.
What he didn’t know was that the funny-looking creased piece of cardboard we wrote on was the back of a Lavazza coffee poster.  It seems Igna was wrong about Americans and our coffee: we do have some good coffee here, at least in Italian communities.  You should have seen his face when he got the card in his hands, turned the used cardboard over and saw the coffee ad.  He was looking around but couldn’t find anyone in the crowd to make a face at.  (Or more likely gestures; you know how he is).  But he had already gotten even with us birthday greeters well before he got the card.  Early in the show he announced to someone near the stage who was wishing him happy birthday that, “It’s bad luck to wish someone happy birthday before it’s their birthday.”  I heard that, but it did not stop me sending the card to the stage anyway.  My thanks to Sandra Libretto from Delaware, a major Ignazio fan sitting next to me, who wanted to carry the card up to him on stage.  Thanks also to her husband Bob for letting her climb out over him in a rush to do that for us.
Most of you have probably already seen Piero and Ignazio do their “Sicilian sign language” and heard Gianluca joke about having to deal with two Sicilians all day every day.  This time when Gianluca made his usual complaint, and asked if anyone out in the audience was Sicilian (so he wouldn’t offend anyone) the whole front center section started shouting at him.  He was outnumbered.  Before the show, many people in our section were talking to each other in our various dialects and most of us in fact were Sicilian or Calabrese.  The man behind me was from Sciacca, Sicily (not far from Piero’s home), my family is from Palermo, and Biagio’s family is from near Cosenza, Calabria.  We all understood each other and of course the two Il Volo Sicilians, as well as Gianluca the “honorary Sicilian,” understood us when even when we shouted things in dialect at them.
The Covid years have not stopped the guys from roaming the aisles and playing with the fans during the show.  While they sang Here’s to You from Sacco and Vanzetti Piero came down my aisle and was fist-bumping, high-fiving, hugging and selfie-ing like the old days.
Normally, if you want a selfie with Piero, he takes the phone from you and takes the picture for you.  But the lady behind me had her phone ready to go, and he let her do-it-herself, as you can see.
You can tell how multi-talented Ignazio is, by watching just a few minutes on stage.   Beside his singing, he played the piano to jazz up Torna a Surriento, “conducted” the orchestra with his hands on several numbers, and announced Piero and Gian’s duet of My Way with the long, roaring rumble of a boxing emcee announcing a prize fight.  Piero shook his head teasing that with this crowd, Ignazio even got un applauso (an ovation) for eating a piece of bread behind the piano.
Let me explain.  One of the most remarkable things I saw at this show was something I’ve never seen at any concert, ever.  In my day, I’ve seen all kinds of stuff sent up to performing artists on stage, from love beads to flowers to hotel room keys.  You may even have heard the story about some young lady throwing her brassiere on stage to Gianluca, with her phone number pinned inside.  But this concert was a first.  A sweet little old lady struggled up my aisle hauling a huge double-thick paper shopping bag full of home-made Italian food.  When Ignazio caught sight of her, there was no stopping him.  He started waving and gesturing to everybody in our aisle to get out of his way and let her through, because she’s coming for him.  Then he personally came down to get the bag from her.  Two songs later, Ignazio was behind the piano eating fresh Italian bread.  Welcome to Il Volo in the New Jersey, Philadelphia ItalianAmerican style.
I think one of the best things about Il Volo is that they have great fans.  For two days I had so much fun meeting and interviewing fans from all around the NJ, Philadelphia, Delaware area, that I decided I need to do a whole second article.    Thank you to everyone who wrote birthday greetings to Ignazio, and to every fan who let me interview them.  You’ll get to meet them in my next article.
All photos by Giovanna Tischler

92 thoughts on “Fun and Games in Atlantic City by Giovanna”

  1. A brilliant article…..thank you so much for sharing your experience, I was with you all the way from the soundcheck, to coffee, to the concert. Now I understand where the bread came from Ignazio was eating. Much appreciation to you 🤗🤗

    1. You’re very welcome. Hope you had a great time. It wouldn’t matter whether anyone brought food or not. Ignazio sometimes has bread backstage, anyway!

  2. Great summary on sound check—didn’t know they do that. Love the Italian food portion. Grazie. 🙏🤗❤️

    1. If you buy the annual membership to the Il Volo Fan Club, they email you a notice before any concert, of where and how to go to a soundcheck if you have a show ticket. God bless the lady who cooked and fed Igna!

  3. The guys are just older and already master showmen. So very talented. I play there music daily and know the words in Spanish, english, ITALIAN. MY 103 YR OLD MOTHER.She says can we play the boys again they sing like Angels. She says if I go to Heaven it is perfect music to listen to. We are all Italian also.

    1. Your mother is 103? Dio la benedica! Their music probably would be pretty good backdrop music for heaven. Never thought about that.

  4. Thank you so much for this overview of IL VOLO in Atlantic City. I had seen them 2 other times and was looking forward to this show very much. Unfortunately when they were in Atlantic City in 2020 I had just come home from the hospital after a Lung Transplant. Then in March of this year their show was delayed until Sept 23rd. My luck I was back in the hospital. Hopefully they will come back to the US next year and I will be able to hear their fabulous voices live and up close. In the meantime, I will continue to follow them and enjoy their music on uTube and my CD’s.

    1. I’m impressed. I never knew anyone who went through a lung transplant. I also had March tickets postponed to September. They’ll be back and you’ll get there.

  5. Thank you so much for this article!!🙏🥰Love how you captured their professionalism but also their fun and goofy side- they are truly just amazing!! 💖💖

  6. I am not Italian and sometimes I feel left out when they speak Italian at the concerts, so thanks for the translation of what they were saying at the sound check and during the show. I’m not complaining, just wish I understood more than I do.

  7. Grazie!, wonderful post. Love the insight into the Italian conversations during soundcheck. Every time I write or speak of i ragazzi I find I am smiling. A beautiful gift.

  8. THANK YOU for this wonderful detailed article about all three of the guys and your overall experiences at their show. I’ve only been following them since their tour began in Italy this year. I find them fascinating and can’t wait to see them at the Dolby in Los Angeles on the 14th.

    1. Article intéressant. Lors d’un commentaire que j’avais fait suite à un extrait de leur spectacle, je mentionnais que je trouvais qu’à leur occasion de leur nouveau duo(Halleluia) Gianluca s’était rapproché de Ignazio et en avait trouvé la confirmation avec d’autres extraits où je trouvais Gianluca plus cool et participant davantage aux blagues et fous rires d’Ignazio. Je me demande si ce rapprochement est toujours présent lorsqu’ils descendent de scène et si le perfectionnisme de Gianluca qui l’entraine à critiquer lors des répétitions(même s’il se critique lui-même) ne risque pas d’entraîner un jour au l’autre des tensions qui pourraient être néfastes au groupe, ce serait dommage. Peut-être devrait il être plus modéré; je pense là à Ignazio puisque c’était lui la “cible”. Peut être est il moins perfectionniste mais moi j’apprécie enormément quand il chante et en plus comme on dit en France il a “plusieurs cordes à son arc” : auteur, manager, musicien et je pense qu’il ferait également un très bon comédien

      1. Thank goodness for online translators (French to English)! Yes, I agree that Gianluca may find some of Ignazio’s antics annoying as he appears to be the deepest thinker and the perfectionist of the group. I noticed that Gianluca seemed really tense at the Detroit concert and I wondered what was “up” with his attitude. And I commented on another’s post about how they travel from city to city and do it gracefully . . . I said that they’re young. But, as a person who traveled weekly for 15 years to do my job (and it wasn’t singing), I cannot emphasize how exhausting travel can be. Yes, exhilarating and the audience does provide the oxygen to continue but still tough. I haven’t yet seen them perform in person and will report my thoughts after the 14th . . . but based on all the fans wonderful posts to instagram, facebook and youtube, my observation is that Ignazio tends to force his voice more than Gianluca or Piero. I wince each time I hear him sing “All by Myself” and I’m hoping he comes across better in person. He’s definitely the comic relief though and continually makes me laugh out loud.

        What did all of you think about Gianluca’s diary post from the other day? Does it pertain to what Giovanna has written about the sound check? This inquiring mind would like to know but may never.

      2. Gianluca est très affectueux envers Ignazio même après une répétition ou un spectacle où Gian est stressé. Les personnes qui assistent aux événements Meet and Greet après le spectacle disent qu’elles sont affectueuses et enjouées les unes avec les autres. Dans des interviews, ils racontent comment ils ont appris à s’aimer à travers certaines de ces choses difficiles. Je ne pense pas qu’il y ait de quoi s’inquiéter. J’aime l’expression “plusieurs cordes à son arc”. Il décrit très bien Ignazio.

    2. I’m jealous. I didn’t get to go to Italy this year. I’m sure LA will be a great show, too.

  9. I didn’t know you were from Colorado and I wondered why they have never been to Red Rocks. They would love singing there.

    1. Il Volo was in Colorado at least once. The airport almost lost Piero’s suitcase with his eyeglass collection. Don’t know why they haven’t come back. I think Red Rocks would be a fun place for them and us. I’ve spoken to several Italian restaurants who would host a pre-show fan meet, if they came here, too.

  10. Thanks. Your article made it more personal and fun to see the real personalities of the “boys”.

    1. Article intéressant. Moi j’adore Ignazio, peut étre n’est il pas aussi perfectionniste que Gianluca mais il sait faire beaucoup de choses. En plus de très bien chanter( je suis souvent très émue par son interprétation ), il écrit des chansons, il est manager, il adore diriger les orchestres , il a beaucoup d’humour et cela est un peu plus pour le groupe. Il ne faudrait pas que le perfectionnisme de Gianluca finisse par créer des tensions néfastes au groupe

      1. Oui. Ignazio est talentueux dans de nombreux domaines, et il ajoute tellement de dimensions supplémentaires à la performance. Le perfectionnisme de Gianluca n’affecte pas leur amitié ou leur fraternité.

  11. What an interesting report–well-done, Giovanna. Grazie mille! I do agree with Eliane (if my rusty French is translating correctly) and am surprised that Gianluca would correct Ignazio vocally–especially in front of fans. Professionals don’t normally do that, although, of course, they say (and all agree) that they are like brothers.

    1. I have watched videos of this tour where Gianluca praises Ignazio about his voice. Ignazio does his share of taking aim at Gianluca and Piero.

      1. You’re right. Gianluca loves Ignazio’s “stretch” and energy, and says so on stage sometimes. Ignazio has certainly razzed Gianluca and Piero and it’s all play, of course.

  12. Thank you, Giovanna, for the wonderful account of the sound check and concert in Atlantic City. Judi, I think the guys are so close that they know that any comment or critique from one to the other is always meant well. The more I learn about their personalities and interactions, the better I understand why we love them so much. Intelligent and super-special young men; there never has been and never will be another “Il Volo”.

  13. Thank you Giovanna, you provided a retrospective
    view of what the Borgata venue means to the guys.
    Loved the humor, the coffee poster, the homemade
    Italian food. I can see why they were anxious to
    make it perfect for their “first” audience in the U.S.
    Thanks to Pat, I hope you are doing well.

    1. You’re welcome, Martha! I am doing well……full recovery is slow, but I’m standing much better and longer, the walking long distances is another thing! It will get better! Thanks for thinking of me! 😘

    2. Pat it artistic and had the clever idea to put the different languages in different colors and make the article eye catchy. We are praying for her recovery so she can get back to traveling and live shows. Hang in there, Pat.

  14. I am so excited! I have followed Il Volo since I saw them on PBS doing the concert in Detroit! They were children! I have all their albums and play their music almost every night as I go to sleep. On Oct 7, my dream will come true! I have a great seat at the concert in Clearwater, Florida. What a wonderful time for Il Volo to visit Florida. Almost everyone has suffered some kind of loss or damage. We were fortunate to have only a little damage. I am a senior citizen (76) and care for my 82 year old sister 24/7 (she has no short memory) and visit my husband (82) in a nursing home as often as I can. Life is very hard, but the sound of Il Volo really keeps me going. I can’t afford the meet and greet, but just seeing them will make my life complete! I bought my ticket as soon as they came on sale 2 years ago. This is the third try to see the boys, oops, men who have held me make it through all the challenges in my life. Much love to everyone!

    1. I’m glad the hurricane is passed, and you will get to see your show. Have a great time. You deserve it after all you deal with.

      1. I drove down to Atlanta from Charlotte to see them. It was hard to believe I was actually seeing them in person. The funny of things I’ve seen on the videos. They were wonderful! The solos were spectacular!!❤️

    2. Hang in there Jayne……I can fully agree with you about the peace they offer us. I’ve also been a fan since the Detroit PBS show with 3 adorable young teens singing their hearts out and being so engaging. My husband passed away 5 years ago from ALZ and they have been holding my heart during that time, always will. They are heaven sent especially to those of us who may be experiencing difficult times. They raise us up !!
      I went my first concert with them last Saturday at Radio City in NYC……it won’t be my last, they are so amazing. I’m excited for you!
      Thanks the Pat and Giovanna for a beautiful article about our favorite trio!

  15. I am so excited! I have followed Il Volo since I saw them on PBS doing the concert in Detroit! They were children! I have all their albums and play their music almost every night as I go to sleep. On Oct 7, my dream will come true! I have a great seat at the concert in Clearwater, Florida. What a wonderful time for Il Volo to visit Florida. Almost everyone has suffered some kind of loss or damage. We were fortunate to have only a little damage. I am a senior citizen (76) and care for my 82 year old sister 24/7 (she has no short memory) and visit my husband (82) in a nursing home as often as I can. Life is very hard, but the sound of Il Volo really keeps me going. I can’t afford the meet and greet, but just seeing them will make my life complete! I bought my ticket as soon as they came on sale 2 years ago. This is the third try to see the boys, oops, men who have held me make it through all the challenges in my life. Much love to everyone!

  16. Giovanna, Thank you for this wonderful post!! I just saw them in Bethlehem, PA and I am still on Cloud Nine! It was an amazing concert, filled with love, warmth, and incredible talent. I am Italian too, I hope to do a Meet and Greet the next time I see them. Grazie, and Ciao.

  17. Going to be at the Atlanta concert tonight. Drove down from Charlotte Any flight crew going to be there. I am by myself in row t seat 1 on the left aisle. Would love to meet you.

  18. By far one of the most interesting articles on our young men yet! I have been a fan since they were teens. You hit the nail on the head about each of their personalities. At the Concert I attended was just at the first of Covid and our meet and greet was quick pictures with them, no conversation or sighing album’s. However they were concerned that everyone there got a picture with them before they had to quickly leave America. Thank you for an interesting read!

    1. Glad you got to see them before they left. The concert I was supposed to attend in March 2020 in Las Vegas was cancelled. Glad you got to have at least something of a Meet and Greet.

  19. Thank you Giovanna, what a great article. Being able to understand their conversations during sound check and to see how they aim for perfection in their singing was interesting. In my opinion they usually do achieve just that.
    I loved the message on the back of the coffee cardboard. That was genius, and I bet Ignazio got a kick out of that, as well as the Italian food package. It sounds like a great concert and I am waiting my turn in Phoenix in 10 days. Grazie

    1. By the time they finish the tour, Ignazio will have so many cards and notes and paper things, he will probably not be able to take them home in his luggage. So some of them won’t survive long. But he does read them. Have a great time at the Phoenix concert.

    1. We were concerned more concerts on the southerly leg of the tour would be canceled due to the hurricane. Glad they were not hit.

      1. I was at the Atlanta concert last night. I saw a few empty seats, maybe 10-15. It was my first live concert. Spectacular!! No pictures or videos were allowed. Piero said we were the warmest, most enthusiastic audience so far. Lots of Latinos! Loved it!!❤️

      2. I guess it depends on the venue whether pictures are allowed and what you can carry in to the show. And the guys love Latinos y Latinas, no doubt about it, but they rave about any group that’s really energetic. Glad to hear your audience was like that.

  20. Giovanna, I appreciate you telling us about the sound check.
    I didn’t know anything about this and thought that it would be about checking the sound levels or something.
    We knew that Gianluca is a perfectionist but I’m surprised that he had Ignacio making changes on Nessun Dorma. How could it get better than it has been. Remember the audience reaction at the original Morrison’s concert? The audience blew them away.

    1. In a way, you are correct. They did make adjustments on the sound board. Piero wanted the pickup volume adjusted on his hand mike, for example. But it seems soundcheck is mostly the last minute polishing before showtime.

  21. WOW! What an outstanding article.I have poured over it more than once. So full of life and love from Il Volo and the audience. So sorry I will miss their tour this time, but grateful for all the Flight Crew members who are giving us these articles and pictures. Thank you to all who made this happen.

    1. It’s our great pleasure to share as many experiences as possible with those who can’t get to a show or have never been to one.

  22. Thank you Giovanna for such an interesting article. It’s nice to hear what goes on at the different concerts. I also just saw them in Bethlehem, PA and as mentioned above they were fantastic. The sound check was really nice but they didn’t say to much to us. But it was fun to see them rehearse.

    1. Whether the guys can talk to yo during the soundcheck depends on what point in the soundcheck you are admitted into the auditorium, and how busy the guys are at that point. Yes, it’s fun to see them rehearse no matter what.

  23. Thank you so much Giovanna for the very informative intelligent & amusing stories about the “Boys”- I am from Queensland Australia with no chance to see these beautiful young men in the flesh – like you I adore them – they lift my spirits & I thank God for their talent & passion for all things music – much appreciate your insight & ilvoloflightcrew.

    1. Maybe you can see them. I understand they are headed to Australia after the US leg of this tour. They will be in Sydney at the State Theater on October 24. It’s not right next door to you, but close enough, maybe.

  24. Thanks a million Giovanna for this treat! I did thoroughly enjoy reading your story pinpointing so many sweet, funny and interesting little details. I am still learning new stuff about our guys. I would have loved being at that sound check being able to watch them when they are themselves working with their performance. I am not surprised to learn that Gianluca is a perfectionist and he wants to correct possible errors arisen over time – in fact I am sure they all appreciate getting things right and hence, of course, take any comment from anyone of them to heart without having their friendship touched by that. I commend them for their professionalism – making it look like a piece of cake on stage – but thoroughly working on perfecting each move while preparing. From my own time as a ballroom competition dancer, our fellowmen would some times think that my partner and I were having a “fight” when practicing as I have some temper and would let steam out – but once we left the floor we were once again smiling and laughing being best friends (and now hubby and wife). So I can relate to Gianluca and Ignazio at rehearsal. I look forward to reading your next story.
    Greetings – Kirsten, Denmark

    1. You were a ballroom dancer? So you and your understand there was nothing bad going on during the soundcheck, that’s just the way it works. During my martial arts years, our performing team was tough on each other, too. There’s an old saying “Cry in the dojo; laugh on the battlefield.” You prepare hard, no matter how much it hurts, then you go out and perform with fun and style. Il Volo seems to do it that way, too.

      1. Yes Jo Ann – I was once an amateur ballroom competition dancer ranking no 10 in my country. But it is a million years ago (read in the 1970-80th) These days I sing in an amateur Gospel Choir and hence I am very familier with Sound checks as well. Each time before a concert we spend approx 1/2 hr partly securing that technical stuff like amps and monitors are placed correctly and give the right sound and the individual mikes for those singing soli are correctly adjusted to especially their voices, spotlights in place etc. – but most of the time we use to polish off difficult passages in select songs, maybe try a new ending or correct an interpretation or the dynamics of a song. There is always something you can improve but some times you just need to run theough a section trying to recall previous corrections that may have been forgotten. So to me it is most likely that Gisnluca and Ignazio were working on the perfection of a song/passage that either during time had taken an individual twist by one of them and needed to get back in place or maybe trying out a better harmony or something. And that in the best and most professional manner and in full respect of each other. All 3 guys are fantastic singers – but they can go wrong of a note or two too or have forgotten what they once have decided upon – so, of course they need to correct each other from time to time. Gianluca is the one having taught himself how to sing by simply using his ears and intuition, so he will no doubt very fast detect if a harmony is not working perfectly, and I am convinced that Ignazio will fully respect remarks to that effect – and they will still be best of friends. Just my thoughts without being present there myself.
        All the best – Kirsten

    2. Thank you Kirsten for giving us the perspective of a performer. It helped me understand why work needs to be done on something that has been presented repeatedly. It didn’t occur to me that it could have deteriorated since I have no experience in this.
      It’s more proof of how hard our angels work for our enjoyment.

    3. Gianluca really doesn’t like his curly hair but I’d like to see it again. In his many social media postings has he ever shown what he has to do to straighten it?

      1. They have hair stylists, and I’ve seen still photos of him getting haircuts. I have never seen or heard about the actual process.

  25. For those who thought Gianluca wasn’t professional making a comment about Ignazio weight, Ignazio, at the Chicago concert told the audience that Gianluca needs a haircut, and the audience yelled NO. At the Meet and Greet, I told Gianluca I loved his hair and Ignazio said, “Do you really like his hair and I said yes, it’s beautiful.

  26. Glad you got to a Meet and Greet. I think Gianluca’s hair is OK. Most everyone I met liked him better with the trimmed beard than the clean face, though.

    1. Gianluca does love his curls! I like him either with
      clean shaven or with a beard……I mean how do you really improve on a face like that!! I think he must be comfortable with how he looks….really his decision!😉❤️

  27. After hearing Piero’s participation of the song Hallelujah for the Pope I think his voice is needed in this song as he added so much depth, power and richness to it.

      1. Come to think of it, I did hear Piero join in this song in front of Pope Francis at the Conference of Families, which was televised. Yes, he adds a lot of fullness to it.

  28. Ty for some of the things I missed I was there too great show of course my husband didn’t have the camera ready when Piero and I held hands darn! Next time !

  29. I didn’t cross paths with you, or I would have interviewed you, too. I would have had you sign Ignazio’s card, too.

  30. This is a wonderful story, Giovanna! I felt like I was there with you! And it is my pleasure to help get it published here for you!

  31. Remember when Ignazio lost 75++ pounds? It was part of the act for years. They patted his waistline and told the audience hoe they used to be 4. Now they’ll kid him about a gain..Ignazio is the sexiest man alive – if he weighed a ton!

  32. This was a fun account of a day with Il Volo. We just finished ours yesterday in Atlanta: Sound Check, show and Meet and Greet. The concert was an amazing two hours straight – just fabulous. Interestingly, I enjoyed the Sound Check more than the Meet and Greet which was very rushed. The guys only interacted with the Sound Check audience from the stage this time though. But it was surprisingly long and very entertaining. All criticism was said in Italian, so it went over our heads!

    As a tip: during the actual concert, one woman in the first row stood up during one of Ignazio’s antics and motioned she wanted a hug and he jumped down and gave her one!

    The Atlanta audience was enthusiastic and sold out according to others. They sang El Triste to the Latinos in the audience which was a real treat (and a n addition, I think). No white suits at all though — boo hoo!

    By accident I did meet several other Flight Crew members there : Judy from Nashville and Linda from North Carolina. Many other fans traveled long distances to attend. My sister flew in from IA to go with me. We all were on cloud 9 and wished it never ended!

    Thanks Jo Ann and Pat for sharing your fun day.

    1. You’re welcome, Sally. It was Jo Ann’s fun day, not mine. I only helped publish her story here. But it sure made me feel like I was there! 😀

    1. Every venue they play is different. I stumbled into one that was pretty relaxed and didn’t have too many stiff rules.

  33. Thank you for your perspective on the three gentlemen who are known as Il Volo! You make it so personal which is wonderful for me as I don’t speak a word of Italian. I try to get all the information I can from everywhere but, so much that is live is in their language and I miss jokes, etc. I love these men’s voices and it is so wonderful to know them personally through your words. They are such wonderful young men and I wish them all the best always. Happy Birthday Ignazio I appreciate your time put into the work you do and the wonderful information that we, the public benefit from as being truth not a scammer. Thank you all for sharing your day!

  34. What a really fun and interesting post. It’s like a good novel, you don’t want it to end. And Pat, you make that novel come true with all your tech knowhow.

    1. Thanks for your kind words, Mark.. I do the best I can with the posts. It is my pleasure to help get these stories to everyone!

      My late husband and I owned our printing business for 25 years. I was the typesetting and layout gal. Coming from Adobe InDesign to WordPress (the program we use to make these posts) was a shocker! WordPress is all web-based with HTML code in the background. It isn’t as easy to make things look the way I want them to here as it is in InDesign. I only know a little about HTML and had played around with it some, but I don’t know enough to manipulate the code to make the posts look exactly like I want (paragraph spacing, etc.). But I think everything usually looks pretty good. 😊

      1. You must be doing something right Pat – Mark is right – your editorials are so uplifting – I feel your are an amazing lady – we appreciate your hard work.

      2. Thank you, Jude. I enjoy working with Jo Ann/Giovanna, Daniela, and Jana to get these wonderful posts published. And the best part . . . I get to read them first!! 😉😄💕

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