Category Archives: Our Stories

IL VOLO AND THE NEW SANCTUARIES by Daniela

A post published by Maura Pucci made me remember this beautiful feat, made by four very tough women.

Unusual and … amazing aspects of Il Volo’s popularity. 

THE NEW SANCTUARIES

We are in 2015.

Four American ladies, from different States, who met on social networks, animated by a great passion for IL VOLO and enthusiastic about the recent victory of the beloved group in Sanremo, decide to join together to undertake a trip to Italy.

Some new Il Volo fans might think: It’s not new! At their concerts in Verona and Taormina there are many fans from abroad and in particular Americans.

It’s true.

Today the Arena of Verona and the ancient theater of Taormina are places of great appeal for the fans of Il Volo from all over the world, who arrive there in droves, both to attend a concert in scenarios such as only Italy can offer, and to meet the virtual friends, frequented on Facebook.

SANCTUARIES 01

But in the spring of 2015 things were still not exactly like that. And the four ladies embark on an Atlantic flight, for the ONLY purpose of visiting the places of residence of Piero, Ignazio and Gianluca, with the same spirit with which the romantic young people of Northern Europe, three or four centuries ago, left for the Grand Tour at vault of Italy, to be satisfied with beauty and culture, but at the same time with the same religiosity of those who want to embark on the journey of Santiago de Compostela.

Because, let’s face it, when it comes to doing this, it means that the three characters have already risen to the glory of the altars and that their places of life have become three new Sanctuaries, pilgrimage destinations …

Montepagano, Marsala and Naro, three small towns in the Italian province have become places of international resonance.

SANCTUARIES 02

Okay, I just wanted to joke around.

But there are still many fans, especially Italian, but also foreigners, who go, or dream of going to Montepagano, favored by its proximity to Rome. And some of them even went as far as Naro.

Unfortunately, after five years, the sanctuary of Marsala today is not very frequent because S. Ignazio moved to Bologna.😂😂

When I read the news of this trip in 2015, I fully understood the attractive power of these extraordinary and unique guys.

Maura

SANCTUARIES 03

That trip, was undertaken by Deborah Georgini Beaupre, Joan Brenin, Madeline Vitella and Maria Lagostini Leps.

In Italy, it was an event, it had never been heard that fans came to get to know the countries of their favorites. Also Sanremo had just ended with the victory and therefore, the local newspapers talked about this trip, here are the articles.

Roseto.com Article – Click Here

FROM AMERICA TO ROSETO, TO SEE THE PLACES OF GIANLUCA GINOBLE

(I translate for you.)

Saturday, May 16, 2015

“I crossed the Atlantic Ocean to see you” is film stuff. Indeed, no?

Because four American ladies have been stronger than exaggerated idioms, making something that even in the best dreams come true: they came from the United States of America to Roseto just to see the places where Gianluca Ginoble, a member of Il Volo, grew up, then headed straight to Sicily and do the same in the native places of Piero Barone and Ignazio Boschetto.

SANCTUARIES 04

The super fans are Maria Agostini Leps from Pennsylvania, Joan Brenin from Florida, Madeline Vitella from New Jersey and Deborah Georgini Beaupre from Texas, who say: “We met on Facebook in 2014, thanks to an article written by Maria after a concert by Il Volo. Having the same passion, we decided to meet and organize this trip to Italy, to see the places of our three darlings. It was enough for us to have the photo all together with the sign of the name of the three cities, but today a dream has come true.”

The dream was to meet Gianluca Ginoble and it became reality again thanks to Facebook, given that Maria wrote to Ercole, the father of the singer, saying of their presence in Roseto.

SANCTUARIES 05

And since fate sometimes puts a good word on it, chance has meant that Gianluca was in Roseto in these days, before leaving again for the artistic and promotional commitments of Il Volo.

So, at five in the evening, on the Roseto seafront, the meeting of a thousand hugs and smiles, with selfies, dedications on records and photos.

Deborah shows a photo of the license plate of her car in Texas: “IL VOLO”, saying that after the death of her husband the songs of the group gave her strength.

SANCTUARIES 06

Maria confesses that she returned to Italy after 50 years (she left at 9) for this. All four have seen many Il Volo concerts and love the three singers.

Gianluca Ginoble says: “It is such a great thing that I can only thank these splendid ladies, because in the face of such demonstrations of affection there is the risk of getting your head up.” (feeling overly important)

FROM AMERICA TO MARSALA, IN THE LAND OF IGNAZIO BOSCHETTO

(I translate the most interesting parts for you.)

SANCTUARIES 07

SANCTUARIES 08

Comune di Marsala Article – Click Here

They came from the USA to make their dream come true: to visit the places where the members of Il Volo, were born and raised.

In Marsala, in the city of Ignazio Boschetto, the first stop of the four American ladies was the visit to the representative office of the municipal administration which appointed the singer Ignazio “ambassador of Marsala in the world”.

The American ladies will leave tomorrow for Naro, the birthplace of Piero Barone; while in recent days they had already visited Roseto degli Abruzzi, the land of Gianluca Ginoble.

He, Piero and ours Ignazio, meanwhile, are already in Austria to participate in the Eurovision Song Contest in Vienna, where Il Volo is finalist by right with the winning song of Sanremo “Grande Amore”.

 

FROM AMERICA TO NARO, ON THE TRAIL OF PIERO BARONE FROM IL VOLO

SANCTUARIES 09

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The last stop on the Italian – Sicilian journey was Naro, the city of Piero Barone. Here too the reception of the girls from “Il Volo Naro Fan Club” was warm.

In the town hall the solemn ceremony with the mayor Lillo Cremona, the vice-mayor Lidia Mirabile and the mother of Piero, Eleonora Ognibene. Then a tour to discover the baroque of Naro and its monuments: the Castle, the old C athedral.

The Sicilian tour will end with a visit to the city of Agrigento and then to Taormina. Then the return to Rome for the US.

SANCTUARIES 11

What women!

Admirable. They were the first, but then many others came.

I don’t think I would have had their courage, but I’m happy that they got what they wanted.

I bet that many of us would like to make this nice trip, and maybe be so lucky to be able to meet Piero, Ignazio and Gianluca ……… but sometimes dreams come true!

Daniela

 

Credit to owners of all photos and articles.

Jana & Lorna’s Italian Adventure – July 4, 2016 – Verona! (Reprise…)

Hello folks!  I hope everyone is having a great 4th of July in the USA!  We are having quite the hot summer here in Michigan, with these past few weeks in the low 90s and this week, all 90s!  Thought I would repost our little adventure from July 4, 2016, for all to enjoy again!  🙂  It was certainly the best 4th of July I will ever remember!!  🙂

Everyone please stay safe and wear a mask, the virus seems to be coming back with a vengeance again in the US! 🙁


Ciao!  Yes, it’s been a little while since my last story of adventure…but I continue!

Ah, Venice Mestre train station. This was our shortest train ride, only about an hour or so to Verona from Venice. We got to the train station very early, since we were only about 10 minutes away. We got there in plenty of time before our departure of 8:32am. We were able 20160704_073915to have a leisurely breakfast and scout out our train track. The Venice train station was not quite as sophisticated as Florence, so we knew we had to go down and up again to find our train. We looked on the schedule, but could not see our train. There were three trains to Verona, but none that left at our exact time. That seemed strange. So, we made our best guestimate and chose the one track. I was still a bit skeptical, but the time was the closest. I was able to ask a lady, in Italian, and she seemed to think we were on the wrong one, we needed to be a few tracks over and the schedule was on the posted sign. I think it was like a regular commuter train, so it didn’t have a special departure scheduled, which is why it wasn’t posted. I went back to Lorna and we discussed it. It kind of made sense, but we stayed where we were anyway. Ok, here comes our train. We get on where we think our car is, but when we boarded, there were no seat numbers on the seats. We had first class tickets with assigned seating! I said aloud, in English, “But there are no numbers on the seats?” A nice, young lady heard me speaking in English and said, “You are on the wrong train!” “What? Dove?,” I said, and showed her our tickets. She pointed to the other track, same track the other lady told us. I looked at my phone – it was 8:27a! We literally had 5 minutes to get down and back up again, and make it to the other train. We literally FLEW off that train and a nice Italian gentleman hefted our suitcases up the long flight of stairs to the other side. We were literally walking/running as fast as we could toward our train. The conductor saw us and asked if we were on this train, we said yes. We started to get on and he said, no, other car. Then he changed his mind and said to go ahead, and we could walk from there. We literally no sooner got on the train and it took off! It was the last train to Verona for that day! Yes, we almost missed the Verona concert! Ok, “dove” the prosecco that morning!

 

We made it to the Verona train station – again, similar to Venice, we had to once again go down the closet-sized elevator and up the other side. Another long wait for the taxi, but we made it. When we got there, it was still quite early and check-in wasn’t until much later in the afternoon. So, we were able to stow our bags in the reception area. The concierge gave 1-veorna-fus a map of the city and we took off, map and Google Maps in hand on our way to find out where the Arena di Verona was. Looked like it was in walking distance from the hotel, so we set off. It reminded me of “following the yellow brick road” except it was a wide 1-verona-gasphalt running/walking path to the main part of the city. We quickly got off the map we were sort of following and I gave up and got out Google again. We got turned around a few times, but I figured it out. On the way to the Arena, Lorna stopped in a shoe shop and bought these really cool flowered tennis shoes. The sun was playing peek-a-boo with the clouds and it looked like it might rain. When we neared the Arena, the sun finally decided it was going to stick around.20160704_115104 I took a few pictures as we were in the surroundings of the arena with a plethora of outdoor restaurants/cafes to choose from for lunch. We had worked up quite the appetite by then.

 

We walked to the arena to see exactly where it was and where the entrances were. After that, we perused the various restaurants and picked out a table. It ended up being a 20160704_121205beautiful afternoon and we splurged on our lunch that day. Lorna had some kind of pasta with seafood. I had a Caprese salad and a pizza and we even had a bottle of Moscato.1-verona-a It was a very leisurely lunch and we just chatted and relaxed and wondered where the guys might be? We finally decided it was time to go. On our way, we passed by this one hotel and there were a herd of girls standing outside. Ok, this must be the place! Lol! Yes, apparently the guys were staying at the hotel aptly called “The Gentleman of Verona.” No, we never saw them, although we strolled by and asked the girls if this was where Il Volo was. Of course they said yes. We kept walking and continued our tour of the city, with the sun playing more peek-a-boo with the clouds. With my faithful companion of Google Maps, we took the long way around, but thankfully made it back to the hotel. It was 1-verona-elate enough by then, so we could check in. Another small elevator, but at least we both fit. We got to our room and it was very nice. The sun decided it was going to stay out at last. We had a tiny, enclosed, little balcony with a window you could open. The view from our room was gorgeous and amazing. You could see over the entire city. Took some more pictures and then we decided to relax a little. We took a nap and decided we’d get ready and take a cab to the Arena. I was still trying to hook up with Betty, but we kept missing each other! When we got downstairs we asked the concierge to call us a cab again, to the Arena. She said had just called one for 2 other ladies and maybe we could 1-verona-bshare it? We thought that would be nice, so we went outside and communicated roughly in Italian, and asked if they were going to Il Volo also and could we share the cab. They said yes. We got in and was happily expecting to share the cab fare and they paid the whole thing! Such nice Italian hospitality! We were still a bit full from lunch, but decided we should eat something. So, we went back to the same restaurant where we had lunch. However, we just ordered dessert. Lorna had Tiramisu and espresso, and I had chocolate torte cake. We also ordered another bottle of Moscato. The cake was good, although a bit on the dry side. As previously mentioned, Lorna graciously let me have the 2nd row seat…but as we were sitting at our table, we were watching the crowd get in line – it was over an hour before the concert started.1-verona-c People were everywhere! It was kind of crazy. We knew we had assigned seats, so we thought we’d just sit and watch everyone instead. We finally gave up and decided to fight our way through the crowds. Lorna went first, as she went through a different entrance. I paid the bill and ventured on to the other side of the Arena. I showed my ticket and they let me in. I bought a few souvenir t-shirts and scarves and found my way to the 2nd row seat. My new friends Veronica, Laura, and Daniela, arrived about 15 minutes later. This was exciting. Before the concert began, we heard the orchestra warming up “Per Te Ci Saro” was playing! Oh, yes, I was finally going to hear them sing it live! Since I reviewed the concert already, a few days after it happened, I won’t go into detail again. Yes, you are welcome. Lol! But a quick recap of starting with “Per Te Ci 20160704_213618-1Saro” and ending with their usual 2 of “Surrender” and “Grande Amore” it was pretty awesome. And I swear it happened just that quickly. Again, I was quite surprised they did the Godfather routine…

Insert actual concert review….

For me, this was the most magical and perfect concert ever.  Not only was it a perfectly beautiful evening weather-wise, I FINALLY got to hear all my favorite songs.  They really picked the best of the best for this finale concert.  The stage and the lighting were magnificent.  They had the monitors and also the videos going for many of the songs.  I thought for sure we were going to be blinded by the lights again, but it was only once or twice.

I finally got my dream come true and into my Il Volo trance I went.  They started with Per te ci saro!!  OMG, I sang the whole thing!  I wanted to stand after every song, but the Italians don’t do that.  They did stand after the solos and duets.  There were few empty seats…Lorna was so awesome, she let me have the 2nd row seat for the entire concert.  I will remember it forever.

Even thought it was second row, we were still quite far from the stage.  Like the orchestra pit area was empty of chairs and unlike the first Verona concert in September last year, the stage did not come out in the middle.

Their voices were of course perfection and Igna added his own to the end of My Piove – a little jazzier riffs and Gian joined him for a few…

Yes, they sang my favorites – Per te, l’more si muove, torne l’amore, canzone per te.  They even did a slight sketch of the Godfather routine.  Igna even sang Allegria and didn’t cry.  No Ancora though….

Gian sang Bridge…and it was incredible.  I remember telling Donna it would get better after we heard it in LA and she said “how could it get better?”  It did!!

I think someone mentioned that they were filming part of that movie where the guys are going to be part of it about opera.  Apparently, the guy who is the star actor was in the front row a few seats down from us. And?!  The guys were cuter!!  Lol!  They did this filming during the concert, but it was no big deal.

The one big shocker was that they did not sing O Sole Mio!  Not disappointed as they left in Surrender!!  Igna and Piero did their thing.

Since I was in the 2nd row, I imagine I’ll be somewhere in the DVD and group shot in the end.  My split second of fame. Lol!  I was in a pink dress to the right of the stage.

I did not see any of the immediate family except for Mary Grace, Piero’s sister and I think Alessio?  Gianluca’s friend.  At the end, Igna went over and gave this older guy a bear hug and picked him up, but no clue who he was.  He looked a little like one of his uncles.

If people want to know what to give Igna at the next m/g I would suggest a belt.  He was pulling up his pants the entire night!

I took some pictures and taped a few songs, but my phone camera and the lights were not friends.

By the time you read this, pictures will be all over everywhere, as well as videos.

Did I say how incredibly awesome it was????  Igna was also playing the piano and a few other instruments.  Gian was wearing tennis shoes and racing across the stage every so often.

Don’t get me wrong, the tenor concert was awesome also, but this was more special and magical for me, as I have been waiting to hear these songs live for as long as most of you!

It was all in Italian except Igna said Thank You.  I did not quite catch what was going on, but something about studying their speech for the next song, etc.  I also had my friend Veronica to translate a few things for me!

I’m still trying to realize I’m in Italy!  I’ve seen the guys 5 times now this year.  You just keep thinking when is the next time?  They are planning another tenor tribute concert in the arena next May 17, but you know, nothing is ever as special as the first time!  My guess is that they might incorporate a few of those songs into their regular concerts next tour.

Ok, it is now a little after 2am!  I really need some sleep if I can, that is.

They really outdid themselves with this one!!

Part of my mission to the Verona concert was to take a few little presents to 2 friends of Sharon’s. They were sitting in the front row, but on the other side. Unfortunately, security would not let me leave my seat, even though it was just a row up. Fortunately, I was able to text her and Veronica communicated in Italian 1-verona-3of my plight. Luckily, we were able to connect after the concert. Lorna and I also quickly met up afterward and Veronica took our pictures. We then made our way to the taxi line and got back to our hotel. I was determined I did not want to forget a thing, so I stayed up til about 2am finishing my post! Was the shortest night on1-verona-d record.   We had to be at the train station very early, as we had a 7a train to Rome and it was a 3-hour trip. After what I believe was about a 3-4 hour “nap” I dragged myself out of bed about 5:30a to take a shower and we were out of there. Again, missing breakfast at the hotel!  Next stop – Roma and the Adriatic Sea!

GIANLUCA: THE VOICE by Daniela

We all know that Maura Pucci loves Il Volo and also that she has a special affection for Gianluca.

Three years ago, she wrote on the occasion of Gianluca’s birthday, a beautiful letter that I am now translating for all of you with pleasure.

I must give you a premise, when Maura wrote this, she was a little worried, because she read everywhere that Gianluca was praised, but the beautiful words were almost always about, his appearance , and for Maura, this fact seemed really very reductive, because “her” Gianluca , he also had something better to offer.

Enjoy the reading!!

I fell in love with him in 2009, when I was disconcerted, but enchanted, by his voice from the deep register, an adult voice that came from a boy, from the face of an angel.

The years have passed and his voice, gradually, has taken on all the nuances that age, still immature, does not allow.

Today I am able to talk about its versatility, because he has many voices, different, but all recognizable.

We can start from his surprising FILO DI VOCE, (wire of voice) with which he concludes the first verse of “Notte Stellata”,  SOFT and SUBTLE, like a sigh, as well as all the whispered parts of the same song and many others, to reach its opposite, that is the DRAMATIC and THEATRICAL voice of baritone in “Aranjuez”.

Moving on from the voice CARESSING and LIGHT, with which he faces the beginning of many songs, from the SOFT and SENSUAL voice of the true crooner, from the AGGRESSIVE voice of “Delilah”, to the POWERFUL but LIGHT voice of “La Danza”, which becomes POWERFUL and TRIUMPHAL in his “Vincerò” of Nessun Dorma, to culminate in the DEEP and SOLEMN voice of the Christmas songs and / or religious, to which he gives a touch of sacredness.

There is also the one, used off the stage, full of RHYTHM and SWING, for particular interpretations, accompanied by him by the snapping of the fingers ……

So many voices for a chameleon singer, as it has been defined:

“Gianluca has a PERFECT VOCALITY, his voice is an INSTRUMENT.”

These are not my words, but of an American expert, a vocal coach, Gianluca does not sing, he INTERPRETS.

Because he sings with all of himself, with his eyes, with his facial expression, with his hand movements, even with his body posture. Look at it well in “Bridge Over Troubled Water”. 

When he sings a song, he does not perform part of his work, but “brings out” the passion for music that he has in himself, to transfer it to those who listen him: he is fulfilling a mission.

……. because he “feels” the music, to the maximum degree.

I saw him with a entranced expression, listening with closed eyes, the splendid voice of Piero, who sang beside him, “O Holy Night” ……. are things that move me and are not forgotten.

How is the artist Gianluca on stage?

He brings to the stage all the behavioral and character characteristics that distinguish him in his private life.

Always in search of perfection, he is PROFESSIONAL to the maximum degree; GENTLEMANLY attitudes, CHEERFUL and SMILING, sometimes even LIVELY, but never too EXUBERANT. WITTY, but with measure; RESERVED, but no longer shy as in the past; ROMANTIC, TENDER, helpful, full of affection for fans, just as he is towards family members, friends, children, the disabled.

I want to add a quality, which with the presence on stage, perhaps not involved, is also sincerely MODEST and not “arrogant” as many insinuate.

Some time ago, he said something that struck me, and now I try to summarize:
“I still find it hard to realize that I, who have had idols since I was a child and still have them today, may in turn have become an idol for many people.”

This is “my” Gianluca, as I see him, and, according to my personal tastes, I have found in him all the qualities that make him a son, a brother, an ideal nephew. ❤️

In fact, I consider him a virtual “grandchild” ……….😘

Nonna Maura with Gianluca

We are at the conclusion and until now, I never said, that he is also beautiful? Yes, because I wonder how much it costs for a show artist to be BEAUTIFUL too? 

It depends. Being beautiful counts a lot for a movie star, how many beautiful actors have been successful without being able to act!

But a singer is asked …… a beautiful voice, that he knows how to use and that enchants those who listen to him.

Like Gianluca’s voice, a healthy bearer of strong and contagious emotions.

If then, the lucky singer is also pleasant in appearance, that is just a plus that does not hurt. 😁😁

Maura

I fully agree with what Maura wrote, it’s true, Gianluca’s beauty is evident and immediately striking, but when he plays a song, his skill in modulating his splendid voice and in interpreting the song is evident.

What to say about this splendid “MI MANCHERAI”, how much transport, how much emotion.

I only knew Il Volo after the victory of Sanremo 2015, so the idea I had of Gianluca was that he started the songs because he had the lowest tones.

I was at the NOTTE MAGICA concert in Florence and I was able to attend the great skill of Il Volo, but the one of the three that surprised me the most was Gianluca, I never imagined how much power he could have in his voice.

Congratulations Gianluca !!  Honor of merit !!

Daniela

Credit to owners of all photos and videos.

THOUGHTS IN FLIGHT by Daniela

As Dario Gerardi’s poem dedicated to Il Volo, you are very pleased with it and, as promised, here are the other two poems.

FLYING WITH OPEN EYES

Explosions of energy … Like thundering voices from the immense and beyond, they expand in the hearts and minds of those who want to dream so much.

The power, the strength, beyond the speed of light, hearing them you can not help but fly with the imagination in a different dimension so majestic. 

Diversity makes unique, the union of three artistic sources where awareness of one’s immensity is master…….

Where the power of music wonderfully intoxicates those who are never satisfied with sound. 

To believe in the power of love …

Where everything seems like a daydream … 

Words filled with sweetness as if in listening to them all bitterness is hidden from this world.

With the voice you can conquer the world, with love you could conquer the universe. 

Emotional gratitude will never disappear from those who will never forget them.

Dario Gerardi

THE THREE STARS

Beautiful sensations … 

Simple, humble, moments of wonderful and enchanting emotional baths transmitted by those who know how make to dream, to those who never want to stop loving. 

Immense happiness …

As everything flows in the universe, their, only fixed point of what is beautiful and never lost. 

Besides simple but complex vocalizations, their quality has been distinguished since the beginning.

Perhaps out of envy, perhaps out of jealousy, those who judge them badly … their sweet, intense melody never entered in their hearts.

As they travel and excite the whole world, they only expand sensational moments of happiness deeper and deeper. 

At the base of a great masterpiece …

Foundations of complete humility … their being is the most beautiful act of generosity. 

Grande Amore … L’Amore si muove … just theirs, with their voice.

For those who love them they have already made the center straight to the heart.

From a port, from an airport, from a station …

Each trip has its own destination …

To be scattered among the snows of the Pole, they will be the only bright night stars to follow … Il Volo.

Dario Gerardi    September 2016

What can I say, there are no words.

Dario captured every sensation perfectly, every emotion and described everything with magnificent words.

Thanks again, Dario, from all of us!

Daniela

Credit to owners of all photos.

ONE STEP FROM STARDOM by Susan De Bartoli

Ignazio & Nico’s Story

If Ignazio did nothing more than sing the rest of his life, he would be remembered as a singer who captured an audience at a very young age and continues to intrigue them with every passing day.  From the first time he stepped on the stage, he was a star. I remember watching him on PBS and thinking if he’s this good now, what will he be like 10 years from now. Along with Gianluca and Piero these three men have achieved in 10 years (in reality 5 years) what men can only hope to achieve in a lifetime! He is the voice that never ends! The voice that intrigues! The voice that takes your breath away! The voice that leads you to ecstasy!

But it doesn’t end there. No, there is so much more to be said about Ignazio and the best place to start is in his performances. He is the ultimate entertainer. He is the production. His presence is there in every aspect of the production. He is a prolific entertainer! He sees music! He feels music! He breathes music! Follow him around the stage. The little gestures aren’t just for our entertainment they are real movements within each song. Let me describe it as I have described it for you in the past:

Ignazio is known as the funny one and that he is! But, is it really about the joke? Or is it more about the production. Let’s turn to the production. 

The stage is simple. One sign that says it all – Il Volo. There’s the orchestra. Guitars, drum, piano, violins and whatever other instruments are needed for the performance. I want you to stop and think about the performance. We know these guys have amazing voices but, what if they got on the stage and for two hours, they did nothing but sing. I don’t think it would work. A performance needs the ability to move on. There’s no change of scenery and no intermission so how do you move the performance along? Ignazio! The joking he brings into the performance provides the levity to relive the seriousness of the performance. He brings a certain ease and suspense to the performance. The audience is always wondering, what will he do next.

But is it always about joking? I want you to think about what I’m saying. Ignazio is constantly moving around the stage. He’s dancing and keeping the rhythm. He’s swinging the microphone around and constantly nodding towards the orchestra, Gianluca and Piero. Is that the lead up to a joke? I don’t think so. Let me tell you what you are looking at. Ignazio is following every note that is sung or played on that stage. His mind is in motion. He is sensitive and passionate with music. He has the ability to see the music as it is happening. He knows where every instrument should come in and out. That’s why you notice little things like him smiling, nodding, pointing towards the musicians, Gianluca or Piero. He also grabs the baton from the conductor, sometimes to joke but more often to conduct. Think about him conducting the Asti Symphony Orchestra while Marcello Rota sang his tenor part. He wasn’t joking, he was conducting. And, that’s why everyone was watching in amazement. And when it was over, they were speechless. Look at Michele Torpedine go across the stage to embrace him. He is in awe of this young man. You call him funny I call him brilliant! I am going to make a prediction here! Remember you heard it here first. Ignazio will compose a great opera one day.

That’s what I’ve said in the past and now I have to add to this by recognizing Ignazio’s production company, Floki Productions. At 25 he has his own production company. Does this surprise you? It doesn’t surprise me. It makes a lot sense to me.

On February 2, 2014, Ignazio collaborated with singer Roberto Amadè in a project that resulted in a wonderful concert, the Amadè-Boschetto concert which was organized through the Cultural and Artistic Center “Ignazio Boschetto,” with the support of The Town Hall of Marsala. The Teatro Impero archipelago hall has long applauded this initiative which brought together several artists from Marsala.

Ignazio has helped many young people in their careers. In February 2014, Katya Pantaleo, a young singer from Marsala, won the Premio della Critica at Sanremo with the song “Come in paradiso” music, lyrics and arrangement by Ignazio.  

“Come in paradiso” video – Click Here

On August 30, 2014, Chiara Cusumano and Giorgia Vassalo, The Duo Sisters, reached the finals of the Festival di Castrocaro, performing a song composed by Ignazio: “Paura d’Amare”.  

And let’s not forget the beautiful song he wrote “Hablando de ti” that he has performed in concert.  

In an article by Ilvolovers Romania they commented: Ignazio, for what he looks like and also for everything he sometimes hides, is an imposing, brave and authentic young man. Sensitive and passionate, his performance creates a hurricane of feelings for anyone who looks at him and listens to him. For him, the phrase “singing with the heart” is not a metaphor, it is a reality expressed in every gesture and makes us wonder what his eyes see when he sings…

Floki Productions I’m sure is Ignazio’s dream. So, where does the dream begin. Enter Nico Arezzo!

Let’s start where Nico started in Ragusa, Sicily. 

Nico (Domenico) Arezzo was born in Ragusa, Sicily on October 2, 1998. You might say he was born and raised on a stage, initially with drumsticks in his hand … but soon the need to put one note after another brought him to the guitar. Both of his parents are entertainers, his mother Emanuela Curcio is dancer and a dance teacher and his father Peppe Arezzo is a pianist and an Orchestra Conductor.

In an interview during the Sanremo Giovani 2019 Nico said “… I study, write, sing and interpret and in my spare time I run away … my guitar has accompanied me everywhere since 2016 … In the last two years I have been very focused on my music, on my writing, on my way of seeing what is around me? Now I realize that I have an overstuffed suitcase in my hands … I’m just waiting to make the world inside me known to all those who, with a suitcase in hand, will leave with me….” 

“There are too many places I’ve never seen, too many people to meet. I kept telling myself this … did I have to go out … out of the house? How to tell my parents? Thus, was born my song ‘Volo’ (Flight). Flight is an air ticket, flight is blank pages, flight is a house key. (Is it destiny that his song was Volo)” Nico says, “In ‘Volo,’ I sing my escape, the desire to try, to try something else. Escape in secret trying to get out of the world of those you love and those who love you without hurting or suffering.” 

Nico wrote and set to music his song “Volo” which he sang at the Sanremo Festival Giovani in 2019. In the song there is the desire of the singer to live 360 degrees, with joys, pains, emotions and also a lot of love. But that’s not all, what struck everyone about his performance was his ability to play the guitar, an element that has conquered the public, the judges and the critics. 

Nico was not new to the television stage he had already appeared in Xfactor in October 2017. He was presented as the Prince of that edition. The song he sang was Prince’s “Kiss.” He also participated in Amici di Maria De Filippi.

Nico first came to my attention in 2017 when he won the Festival Show in Verona with the song Se Vuoi (If You Want). Nico said he was drawn to the song because, “It’s a song that forces the body to move even without wanting. It’s a fresh song that turns on everything that can be turned on … the same freshness that I want to convey now that the music has taken my whole life.” The song is exciting and lively, like Nico! I remember that his voice captured me. He has lots of rhythm and expression. He immediately captured the audience. And, I’m sure he captured the attention of at least one of the judges there that night, Michele Torpedine.

In many ways Nico reminds me of Ignazio. He knows what he wants and, he goes after it.  

This past January, Nico was the first artist to sign a contract with Ignazio under Floki Productions. This is some of what Nico wrote in a post after signing with Floki.

I never write long posts but, I have to tell you things that are too important:

• I signed… I will be the first artist of the “Floki Production” of the big man @ignazioboschetto with the eye always watchful of the big boss @mtorped… we are talking about the top of the top, we are talking about people who even looking at you make you feel smarter smarter

• It’s been (since the) beginning of January that, every day, I sing I write I eat register I take them I sleep dirty scream I clean them back I laugh I live in a place where people are not well… meaning that maybe they are not even people at the bottom… They first look at you, then they play… and play… and how they sound you’ll hear it. At @takeaway_studios REGISTING my first ALBUM and what’s selling outside is something impressive… to me, something awesome… and thinking I have my first album on my hands, thinking about delivering my first album is something awesome…

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Ignazio said, “A Great project boils in the pot! As soon as this pandemic permits us, we’ll be hanging out with @nico_arezzo’s new album.”

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The way I see it with these two Sicilian kids it has to be great!

Nico you’re One Step from Stardom. Hitch your wagon to a star and follow Ignazio, he knows the road!

All coming very soon!

Credit to owners of all photos and videos.