Even before the guys announced their ten-year tour celebration, Sharon Bear, Detroit IlVololover and fellow Flight Crew member, wanted to do something special to commemorate this momentous occasion. It had to be special, not just your everyday, average, congratulatory “key to the city” presentation, but something really big! This was Il Volo and she’d been following them from the very beginningwhen they landed in Detroit just over ten years ago. She was even in the audience for their inaugural DVD, Il Volo Takes Flight, taped from the Detroit Opera House and received Piero as he sang O Sole Mio to her in the audience. Yes, what could she do, what could she do? She thought.
The wheels in her head started to spin and she came up with a plan. But first it was time to contact Il Volo management. Through a good Il Volo friend connection, she was able to obtain Il Volo producer, Michele Torpedine’s email, and she contacted him. Shortly afterward, at the end of January, they arrived in North America to entertain us with their first few concerts, beginning in Canada. Michele forwarded Sharon’s email to Barbara Vitali, the guys’ personal and road manager. Barbara contacted Sharon. At first, Barbara was not too sure what Sharon was talking about and felt this was just another ploy of fans trying to get Il Volo’s attention. But when Sharon explained, in detail, how she had already put out feelers to the mayor and the governor, it really got Barbara’s attention. She listened carefully to the plan and was quickly on board. Barbara and Sharon stayed in close contact for the next few weeks, emailing and texting all of the details, both major and minor. In addition to keeping in constant contact with Barbara, Sharon worked tirelessly getting final commitments from the media and public offices, by making phone calls, late night texts, organizing press releases, writing biographical data, setting up remote Interviews, going through chains of command in sending emails, and even old-fashioned snail mail.
Since Il Volo was launched in Detroit at the Fox Theater and Detroit Opera House, Sharon decided to contact the Detroit mayor’s office. Well, why not? She called Mayor Duggan’s office and with a bit of negotiation and coordination, was able to get some agreement tohonor the guys with appropriate fanfare. However, as he was going to be out of town, who could do the presentation? Sharon and his office manager discussed a number of people and finally assigned this important task to a communications director in the office, who just happened to also be Italian. Then began the decisions of what to say and how to present it – a letter or a certificate? Both were cookie-cutter formats with only names to be filled in. Nope. Not good enough for the Il Volo guys. A new format had to be designed – personal, informative and exclusively for Il Volo. More work, but finally all were in agreement. Ok, one hurdle down, on to the next. Who else should she call?
Sharon then called the governor’s office of the State of Michigan, Governor Gretchen Whitmer. Again, she was able to get through to the governor’s office and relay her project, which was also met with cooperation. However, much time was required to process this request as Sharon insisted on a new, personalized certificate, which was specifically worded for Il Volo’s 10th anniversary. This endeavor consumed a couple of weeks of her time, ending with the governor’s office promising to overnight the document to Sharon’s home to arrive the day before the concert. Ok, who’s next on the list?
She called the Italian consulate, of course! Maria Manca is very proud of Il Volo and was looking forward to attending the concert.
Sharon had the three areas of government covered, now what else? The media, of course! She contacted the Detroit News, as well as TV channels, 2, 4, and 7, along with a local news radio station, WJR (with wide signal coverage to several states). Then Mike Hodges, of the Detroit News, was assigned the task of writing this beautiful article https://www.detroitnews.com/story/entertainment/music/2020/02/12/detroit-il-volo-fox-theatre-opera/4728557002/ celebrating Il Volo and the event which would happen before the concert. The entire event would include the mayor’s office presenting Il Volo with beautiful certificates of congratulations for their 10th Anniversary, as well as their ground-breaking roots stemming from Detroit. Also, the Italian consulate would offer comments and the governor’s commendation presented.
Our Detroit concert date, of Feb 13, was fast-approaching and the excitement of this whole event actually coming together was a bit mind-boggling. Even though this was what Sharon was used to doing in her past career, this was still a very complicated endeavor to take on.
As the Detroit Il Volo Gals celebrated Gianluca’s 25th birthday (Feb 11) at a local restaurant on Feb 8, Sharon could not contain this surprise any longer, and told us of her plans! This media project, was to take place after the soundcheck, at approximately 6p – 6:30p, with the concert beginning at 7:30p, at Detroit’s Fox Theatre. We sat there surprised and stunned at the news. We were also very happy for her and wished we could be flies on the wall, but alas, this was pretty exclusive, so we would not be able to attend the ceremony backstage.
The night of the concert finally arrived. The plans and logistics had changed a bit and it was decided that Il Volo would be presented with this honor during the concert, before their last few songs. A local
spokesperson presented Il Volo with personally signed letters from the mayor’s office, from the City of Detroit, making them honorary citizens, along with pins, and congratulating them on their 10 years of success. They also received certificates of appreciation from the governor’s office. The Italian Consul was in the audience and her praise of them was expressed. Il Volo was informed that this was going to happen, but they did not know to what extent. The guys were very gracious and
surprised at this honor from the City of Detroit and the State of Michigan. Ignazio was pleased to be an honorary citizen of Detroit, as he is looking at the pin below.
After the presentation, they quickly went on to sing the aria from La Traviata and the remainder of the concert.
For those of us that were able to get home a little early after the concert, it was “news at 11”, or in actuality, more like 11:30p for Il Volo! Sharon was also able to arrange for channel 7 to do a short segment on the guys and the evening’s concert. It was just over a minute, but it was still a thrill to see them honored on our local TV news channel – an ABC affiliate – in the evening, and again on the morning news. There is a snippet of the segment here:
Although things had not gone quite according to plan, Sharon was still pleased for the guys in receiving this grand recognition for their 10 years of hard work and success in their home country of Italy (and the rest of Europe), as well as the United States, Mexico, Canada, South America, Australia, Asia, and Russia! They are truly loved, the world over, on all six continents! Well, who knows, maybe there are some happy penguins in Antarctica, waddling along to Grande Amore!?
(facts sourced via Sharon Bear, photo credits are mine)
Today is Ignazio’s turn. I found this video, shot immediately after the Sanremo victory. The entire city council and the whole city of Marsala gave a beautiful recognition to a very happy Ignazio and he does not lose his sense of humor.
Here is the translation:
(The crowd applauds and shouts IGNAZIO, IGNAZIO ……. Ignazio gets up and turns smiling, at that moment a girl’s voice shouts “Bravo my love!!”, everyone laughs.)
The city council expresses all the satisfaction of the city for the great goal achieved by the fellow citizen Ignazio Boschetto who, as a member of the trio IL VOLO, has won the 65th edition of the Sanremo Festival. (applause and again the girl’s voice “Bravo my love……..fantastic”).
And now, the proposal to appoint the fellow citizen Ignazio Boschetto as ambassador of the city of Marsala in the world. (much applause and ritual photos, the mayor tries to bring back the order but there is too much noise of the crowd and then Ignazio takes the situation in hand raising his voice ……. too nice)
IGNAZIO = Gentlemen, as it is an official session ……. (everyone laughs)
Man = The President Enzo Sturiano delivers the resolution to Ignazio Boschetto. (kisses and applause)
Let’s read the official prize:
“The city of Marsala, the gold medal to the civil value to Ignazio Boschetto, member of IL VOLO, ambassador of the city of Marsala in the world. The president of the City Council, Enzo Sturiano, city of Marsala, 18 February 2015”. ( photo and then the anthem of Italy sung by the whole crowd).
IGNAZIO = There would be many things to say, because it’s really unexpected, starting from a small city like Marsala and starting to study a little for fun, and then after 11 years, you’re ambassador of your city, so it’s really something inexplicable, it is also difficult to explain the emotion, but what I can say and that in recent years, sometimes I was also criticized by Marsala, people thought I was a haughty guy, who had found the opportunity to go on air to Rai1 and has become who knows what!!
What I have learned, and I do not want to be a teacher, is that before judging a person, one must know him. (applause).
The problem we have today is that many people judge immediately, instead of doing the actions, we all judge and say only words.
In fact here today, I came with a friend of mine, he came to my house. I unfortunately was not there, but then at home we talked about it, it’s this boy here . . . get up.
What’s your name?
Well, this guy is Italian boxing champion right? Lately I’ve heard people say that Marsala has recently forgotten about her talents and is only interested in me.
Instead I hope that Marsala is aware, even of these small but great realities, that they are like him in boxing and many other people in all sectors, because Marsala is full of talents.
What I wanted to tell you, is that I am the first who would like to have a friend ambassador in fact, I’m the first one who would like to share the emotions with another person, but I think that many people speak only to talk, and to get out the air from their mouth.
I wanted to say thank you, because in recent years I felt supported by Marsala, and, apart from the politics there is, with Enzo there is a great friendship.
I have always pulled back with regards to politics because in my position it is always better to avoid, but with Enzo there is a friendship that goes beyond politics, it is a beautiful person.
And then there are all of you here, I think that in the end there is always something that unites us, in this case THE MUSIC unites us all.
We may be acquaintances or friends, but in the end we are all the same, we are all in the same place, so sometimes I think there is no need to make any difference.
So I wanted to say thank you to all the inhabitants of Marsala and the city council. (applause, people shout Mayor you, Mayor you and Ignazio respond to them)
I would not run a city ….. I must be mayor of my life, first of all.
Thank you very much for this nomination, I am truly honored and I hope I will never disown this nomination, because it is really nice to be ambassadors of your city and I hope to always bring prestige to this city.
Man = You have the keys to the city.
(follows a hug, and then several short questions)
IGNAZIO = I think that in Marsala we have many beauties, there is the Stagnone (a reserve with natural landscapes, there are also salt pans), but I think that first of all the inhabitants of Marsala have to take care of it, because if all the inhabitants of Marsala will take care of all the things we have here it will increase tourism, it will increase the number of people who will come only for a weekend. So I think we are an important part of a new economic and tourist recovery in Marsala.
Touring a lot, you realize many things, when you go to Vancouver in Canada, you realize that there is not a cigarette on the ground, if we had the same efficiency of other countries…….. when I arrive in Marsala I wonder, “but you imagine, if everyone had respect for the city. “
Interviewer = I spoke with Mr. Tony Renis, he complained that none of the boys contacted him to announce the victory of Sanremo.
IGNAZIO = Obviously there is controversy. Like any relationship, over time …. when the glass breaks, it breaks. Critical aside, I do not want to think about it, we won Sanremo and it’s a nice emotion, and I want to enjoy it at the limit of everything, so I let it slip away.
IGNAZIO = Marsala has a population of warm people, when you come back to Marsala, you never feel alone, there is always the person who makes the joke, that makes you laugh, maybe, if you go to Milan and it’s a little more difficult to find people like that. But as I said before, maybe we should have more respect for our city, because we know that we have a beautiful city and we think only to exploit it but not to preserve it.
(At this point, Ignazio was asked for an opinion on political matters)
It’s something that does not belong to me. I have always said that I do not like giving preferences, however, I have a person here next to me that is very valid. I say only this, and in friendship I can say that I hope that all of Marsala will understand what this man can do, politically speaking, I’m for nobody.
Follow the images of the crowd outside the Town Hall, all sing Grande Amore with Ignazio, a woman imparts to him the wrong words and Ignazio scolds her and everyone laughs.
I believe that night all the citizens of Marsala felt proud of Ignazio. They filled the municipal hall and also the whole square in front of it.
How fun to hear the whole square that sang the verses of Grande Amore, which only a few days before had won Sanremo.
But the thing that struck me the most were the answers of Ignazio, clear and mature answers, of a serious, honest boy who does not want to obscure the success of other people.
This is simply Ignazio, one of the three jewels of IL VOLO.
On June 5 and 6, the WIND MUSIC AWARDS took place in Italy. This event awards Italian artists who have had the best sales during the year and also the largest number of people attending the concerts, the so-called “live” prize.
IL VOLO was expected in the second evening. The event was recorded and will be broadcast by RAI 1 on June 12 .
Piero, Ignazio and Gianluca received the “live platinum” award for a presence in the Italian concerts of over 100 thousand people.
The guys arrived in Verona in the afternoon to take part in the rehearsals, here is the video of their arrival.
We did not know what song they would sing, usually there is only one song, and I sincerely hoped it would be “Noche sin dia,” because the Arena was full of very young people, also what better stage to present the new single?
Evidently, the refusal to listen to the single in Italy, was observed and so, the choice went to a mix between “L’Amore si muove and Grande Amore”.
They are two beautiful songs and, even if it’s just a video recorded from the top of the Arena, it’s great to see the total ensemble and to let you listen to how the audience sings with the guys “Grande Amore.”
In addition to the compliments, the guys were asked what programs they have for the future and Gianluca has confirmed that there will be BIG SURPRISES.
Of course, hearing all the people singing along with the boys makes me shiver …..
Here are two other videos taken by the public.
And here’s a special photo. The boys are in the company of Federica Andreoli, and Francesca Loy respectively they are the producer and actress of the film Un Amore Così Grande.
More photos of the evening.
Good as always, the guys deserve all these prizes.
IL VOLO will be present at the Wind Music Awards 2018.
The event will take place on June 5th at the Verona Arena, which on its historic stage will resound the notes of the greatest hits of recent months with the performance of the stars of Italian and international music. There will be many guests, and like all, even IL VOLO, will perform a single song.
The question arises: What song will they sing ?????
Since the WMA audience is essentially a young audience, that wants to move and dance, I hope that for that date, the new single has been published.
I think that making the new music would make us feel, in an evening like this, over the top. Moreover the boys have warned us several times that with that Latin rhythm, they will make us “dance.”
So, I hope we will all be ready to dance with them!
Hello all…. I told Jane before she posted this that I wanted to add a few words….
Daniela, bless her heart, works tirelessly for us finding info and translating videos and appearances like this. I will be honest and say, I don’t usually have time to read everything, but Jane sent this to me in hopes I had time to do it. Unfortunately, I didn’t quite make it and sent it back to her. Then, after sending it back to her, I had a chance to read it – below is my reaction…. Jana
OMG!! I seriously have tears in my eyes, so much so, that I can barely see straight enough to type! Those words from Ignazio, so honest, true, passionate. I just want to give him the biggest, greatest hug and kiss ever!! Ok, the tears are now running down my cheek…
It is true, he has suffered much for his young age. To think that people tell him he is a “fool?” I think, and hope, the better translation though is “the funny one?” 😊 I really hope the Americans don’t call him a fool? I always knew I liked him the best and the more I read about him and the beautiful words he says, the more sure I am. I know when I see him, I always say he is my favorite and I do think he really cares when he says “aww….” 😊 It is so sad though, we get such little time to talk to them at the meet/greets – we don’t have time to tell them how we really feel sometimes. He always seems to comment that people don’t get to “know him” for who he is. I’m sure there are MANY fans that would do anything to get to know him personally! I know I would!
Every time I’m feeling down in the dumps about the site, or the guys, or my life in its current state, I read something like this and the passion is once again renewed. I can’t fight the tears and emotions that are expressed. His honesty is so raw, so innocent and touches me right through the heart! Not sure about the other two, but I think he really expresses the humility the group always professes. He still doesn’t realize how awesome he really is. Maybe that is why he sings with such passion and vulnerability? I so feel him…. Here come the tears again! Maybe we really were connected in another lifetime?
This is so beautiful – enjoy!
On March 29, this announcement appeared:
All ready to welcome a great international artist to the Shakespeare Academy … today an artistic meeting with a surprise guest exclusively for our students. Stay tuned.
Yes, our Ignazio Boschetto received the SHAKESPEARE THEATER AWARD 2018 award.
The event was not at all publicized because it was reserved only for students of the theatrical academy of Palermo. An event that took place in a very informal way and where Ignazio was able to meet and give advice to young students.
These are some statements made by Ignazio.
“My goal is to make my art known, I want to get there in a healthy way, it’s all about consistency, there’s no right or wrong, then it’s important to enjoy what you have, but never be satisfied.
Sacrifices, I have made them and I will do it, but if you want something, if you choose it, you do it.”
“I still remember my first time on a stage, a country bullfight, I was excited because the audience had more than 250 people and – says Ignazio – I forgot the words of the song that I had to sing, I watched the floor all the time.
Now, I face the stage in a different way, I’m afraid afterwards, my hands and legs tremble at the finished show.”
“We are establishing a label of our own, we – continued Ignazio – we were lucky enough to be in the right place at the right time, I owe a lot to my parents who always believed in me, but never forced me to a life that maybe I did not want .
To be able to feel good, you must always treasure the people who love you.”
The afternoon with the students of the Shakespeare Theater Academy in Palermo was very pleasant, alternating with questions to which Ignazio always answered with sincerity and simplicity. There were musical moments, especially duets and choral moments.
In this video, Ignazio gives advice to emerging artistic talents.
“We are in Sicily, in Palermo, and I wanted to send a message to all the Sicilians in particular to the guys like me, who are chasing their dream, in all fields, singing, acting, dancing, even in the working career.
We live in a land that is Sicily, one of the most beautiful lands in the world, a very rich territory, unfortunately maybe the management is not the best, but we can make this country with our art, something beautiful.
I, in my small (way), with Piero, my travel companion, we are trying with our art, and I want to entice everyone to produce, do a lot for this land and above all give a smile and maybe a better day to those who listen, or who sees you.
So a big hug and hope to see you soon in some concert.”
In this other video, Ignazio talks about his physical appearance.
“I was 120 kg. in practice I was an arancino al ragù, with meat, now I’m with pistachio, with the tip (the arancini with meat sauce are round, those with pistachio, pointy).
Not everyone is lucky enough to be thin (and he jokes with the boy at the piano).
I know people, but also I personally, there was a period that I did not accept myself, let’s say you’re in the eye of the storm, they see you all, so to feel better, you look in the mirror, and then I’m always been very self-critical, and so many times I have suffered from this. The best was when we had to go get some clothes, and then, we went toArmani’s shop and the clothes were too small, we looked in the big sizes and those were too big.
So in practice I was almost alone in my underwear and socks. But then all started from a fever, I began to lose weight, I liked it, and then lost 35 kg all at once.
However, in 2018 women like a little bacon, so I do not have to lose weight anymore, I’m joking.
Even today, however, I do not like myself, because we are a bit ‘all like that, we never like each other, but this is a stimulus to do something, like the gym, which in a year I went at least 5 times. (everyone laughs)
They (referring to the public) did not understand one thing in training, it is important to rest, to me, like to rest the muscles, and then be more active. (laughs)
In the last video, the merits and defects of IL VOLO are asked to Ignazio.
You can not describe a person on television because you do not know him.
Speaking of Gianluca, which may be the one for which the girls are more crazy, he is handsome. During interviews, it may seem like the most haughty one, the one that attracts the most attention,
He may seem the most haughty, the one who keeps his distance, but it is not always easy to be yourself in front of the camera.
However he really is the best person in the world, and I would like a 10 percent of his determination, because when he wants to do something and thinks it’s the best thing for him, he’s determined, very determined.
Piero, on the other hand, is fiscal (physical), he is very strict with himself, he has a passion for opera, he is studying to improve his lyrical technique, and he goes back and forth from Bologna because there, we have the teacher. He too is very determined and knows what he wants to do, he wants to do the classic opera and I often tell him that I can one day be in the front row listening to an entire opera where you play the tenor part.
And then there’s me, I’m the fool (the funny one) of the situation, and I tell you the truth, sometimes I suffered from this.
It’s bad when at the end of the concerts, they come to greet you and say: you are the onewith the lyric voice (to Piero), you are the one with the romantic voice (to Gianluca) and you are the fool. At the beginning I suffered a bit of this, but I have always tried to give my best, and in the end I managed to change a bit, the idea to people.
I am a person who has no filters, for me cameras or not, I am always the same.
(intervenes Tony Colapinto) Not only cameras or not, but that there are 5000 people in the theater or three at home, for him it is the same.
I was in Taormina during a concert, there were many foreigners, very many, from anywhere in the world, from Australia, from Russia, from Brazil, from America, people who laughed, even if they did not understand, what he had said, or at least I suppose.
Ignazio = Then to me, I do not like to talk about myself, in the end, I let people judge and that’s it, I do not talk anymore.
Really nice, this speech by Ignazio all the ART TEATRO of Palermo, I liked how it was held, as a chat with friends.
And you, what do you think?
Well, Flight Crew fans, my reaction is above, let’s hear yours! – Jana
This person was present at the event and took a selfie with Ignazio and then posted it with this dedication:
“Great person, great humility that for a boy of his age is rare, a beautiful example for all young people …
I wish you the best Ignazio Boschetto Il Volo ”
Credit to all owners of videos and photos.
Come in and share the love of life, friends and Il Volo!