Can you believe it? Just 4 weeks away now for those of us lucky enough to visit Verona again! I have to say, I really didn’t think I’d be able to go back again. As many of you know, it’s been a really rough past year and a half for me for many reasons, but I am feeling much better and finally looking forward to going to Italy again to see the guys. 🙂
I am lucky again to go with my dear friend Lorna. We will also be joined by Rose Marie from Ohio, and Betty from New Orleans! Our itinerary includes Roma this time, in fact, we will eat our way through Roma, after the Vatican, of course. Lol! We also plan to visit Lake Garda for a day, after the Verona concert, then back to Roma, and home. Will be a quick trip, but hopefully a more relaxing one than last time.
So, who’s going to Verona?? Each day, I find that there is another person that will be joining the many hundreds of fans at their last official concert in Italy – at the Arena di Verona! Alas, we don’t have front row, but do have meet/greets. Front row will have to wait for Detroit, and hopefully Chicago.
In the comments, please let me know who is going to Verona, for starters, it will be myself, Lorna, Betty, Rose Marie, Daniela P (of course 🙂 ), a few others I am aware of from the States, as well. Also, my other friend Veronica from Italy, and her friends.
I know many do not like to “join the throngs of the crowd” and that’s ok, but if anyone would like to join our group for a pre-concert gathering somewhere near the arena, please note it in the comments. If you’d like, you can email me directly at:
We also have our tickets to the soundcheck! Yay! Maybe we could plan something before or after that? Lorna, Rose Marie and I are staying at DiMoras House – about a 10-minute walk or so to the arena. We are taking the train from Roma to Verona that morning of the 24th.
I look forward to your comments and suggestions! 🙂
On another note…. I’m sure many of you have seen (and cringed) at the PBS announcement of the guys being in Detroit again on Labor Day September 2. Looks like they’ve really outpriced themselves this time as it was initially a “big secret” – now they are having trouble selling the tickets. I believe I heard there were 50 tickets and as of this writing, they still have some left. Tickets are $500 for meet/greet & Wine/Dine. Here is the link, if anyone is still interested in going… https://www.pledgecart.org/pledgeCart3/?campaign=38B55A20-6C5C-4849-B794-175DAF95CB7A&source=#/home?cmpgn=DPTVExp2
P.S. all picture credits go to me – lol 🙂 (except PBS one…)
About a month ago, my dear friend Valeria Bosch, whom you all know well by now, asked me for help in translating an article on Ignazio into English. For me it was a real pleasure and an honor, to translate Valeria’s beautiful and appropriate reflections. Surely many of you will have already read them, but I repeat them here again, in order to re-cheer your hearts. 💖
Enjoy the reading!
IGNAZIO: the lights are dimmed on the stage, in the central cone only a young man dressed in dark, the sleeves of the shirt rolled up and a fashionable “gilet” (vest) of the past. For a few seconds he concentrates himself closing his eyes, then starts with the first notes of “Almeno tu nell’universo”, low, just whispered, to rise more and more, as the pathos of the music grows, in a conjunction between voice, music and text that captivates the viewer, keeps him suspended between earth and sky, in a region totally detached from reality and from matter. The passages of register, whispering, trembling, vibrating, acute, follow one another urgently, not as a mere demonstration of technical ability and artistic maturity, but as perfect emanations of the emotions of the mind and heart. At times a “divine violin” approaches him, it’s Alessandro, who, with pure magic, underlines, exalts, centuplicates the impact of the song on the public.
IGNAZIO is like this:his relationship with music is symbiotic, when he closes his eyes and sings, leaves for distant lands, goes beyond the mountains and the sea, and takes you with him into his secret world, where you can abstract from everything, in those few minutes you lose the connection with time and space, to get a taste of that beauty and that perfection that has always been the man’s ultimate intent, an ethereal and impalpable world, but perhaps for this reason eternal and indestructible, the world of true music.
IGNAZIO said it in the presentation: he chose the song, delivered to immortal memory by Mia Martini, because impressed by the story of this extraordinary singer, a sad and painful story, but at the same time full of greatness and genius. The text, by Bruno Lauzi, fits perfectly: in the eternal restlessness and discontent of human feelings (“people are crazy … when fashion changes … they change too”), the reference point can only be someone who can give sincerity (“tell me that you will always be sincere”), corresponding to ever-increasing love (“more, more, more”), as a promise of something finally lasting and indeed eternal (“you will not change … you will really love me, really more and more”).
IGNAZIO was very courageous in choosing this solo, because the piece is linked in the collective memory to the unique and unforgettable Mia’s interpretation and therefore presented the risk of not being accepted by the public. But precisely for this reason he chose the way of not following the normal canons of a “cover”, but he made a real revisitation of it, focusing, more than on the intensely dramatic tone and on Mia’s tension, on a very modern interpretation (30 years passed since that 1989 in which the song was presented in Sanremo!!), made of fragments and continuous contrasts, deliberately disarticulated, marked by the intense passionate expression of the face and the beautiful hands that follow all the musical movements.
IGNAZIO, I thought looking at him, has the suffered and passionate execution and “le physique du role” of a chansonnier of the golden age of the Parisian “boites de nuit” (nightclubs), where in the 50s and 60s of the last century was formed that new movement of unique musicians who sang the craft of living, the discontent, the breakup of an era, a movement that in Italy became that of songwriters, some of whom, Paoli, Guccini, de Gregori, Finardi, delight us even today. Certainly Ignazio does not sing his own texts, even though we know that he has already shown that is able to compose, doing it, and also successfully, for other interpreters; but that his empathy, so intense, in the sung notes, that deep and emotional expression of the face, his interpretation so authentic descends directly from those noble fathers who lit the musical nights of the past.
Contemporary Italian music has an urgent need to revitalize itself and Ignazio, and with him, with absolutely equal ability and talent, his friends Gianluca and Piero, with their “Musica Tour” are really teaching everyone how this innovation can happen without breaking with the most genuine Italian tradition, without freakiness, without vulgarity, without pseudo-intellectualistic nonsense raps. It’s from them, from the young people of Il Volo, foolishly accused by brains without thickness to “make old music”, that is coming the proposal that will give new life to the Italian music scene.
(Thanks to Danilo Video, for this wonderful video, “ALMENO TU NELL’UNIVERSO” – AT LEAST IN THE UNIVERSE, from the concert in Rome.)
Luca Maggitti is a good journalist who lives in Roseto degli Abruzzi. In these days of early August, he interviewed, for EMOZIONI MUSICA FESTIVAL, Gianluca Ginoble, Michele Torpedine and also Marino Bartoletti.
Of these three interventions, I will translate the most interesting moments.
Let’s start with GIANLUCA.
After the various initial pleasantries, where Luca Maggitti asks Gianluca the importance of his Abruzzo and thanks him for always bringing the knowledge of his land up high in the world, they remember together the first meeting with Massimo Ranieri, which took place in Roseto, again before Gianluca became part of IL VOLO.
Luca asks Gianluca if Massimo Ranieri is an example for his life, as he is a singer, actor and director, and that’s what Gian answers.
GG= Surely Massimo Ranieri is a great example, he is a complete artist, but I, as you know, am a big fan of American music, Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, and they too were great actors.
I am closer to the type of music, but also to the type of acting, more American, but Massimo Ranieri, has always been an artist that I greatly admired.
Towards the end of the interview, Maggitti asks Gianluca the plans for the future of IL VOLO.
Gianluca replies that they are celebrating their 10-year career, with a tour that started in Japan and will end in the US, and the first date will be at Radio City Music Hall in New York, for the third time.
And now let’s continue with the interesting parts of the interview with Michele Torpedine.
Maggitti asks Michele, why every year, he comes for a week in Roseto, what he likes about this place, since he could go anywhere, but he chooses to come here.
Michele answers that Roseto is his second city, perhaps more than the first, because in Bologna he lead a retired life, he live in a reserved manner. Here he has many friends, beyond the relationship with Gianluca, everyone loves him here, and for him that’s important.
Maggitti shows the book RICOMINCIO DAI TRE and asks Torpedine for an explanation of his phrase “I love music, but not the world of music.”
Michele explains that there is a lot of ingratitude in the musical world and his book served to explain this fact.
Maggitti congratulates Michele, for his cover photo, of the book, confirming that it is a shot made by Gianluca.
Michele admits that Gianluca is very good with the camera and confirms that the photos that Torpedine uses on his Facebook page are made by Gianluca.
Maggitti asks how important the figure of the manager is. Torpedine confirms that if there is a good relationship, the figure of the manager is of considerable importance. Below he talks about his experience with Pavarotti and the importance of having understood the success of combining classical music with pop music.
But in my opinion, the interview where really important things were said, is this of the dear friend Marino Bartoletti.
At the beginning, Maggitti recalls the early days when Bertoletti came to Roseto, but then, confirming that for him this place has become a fixture, for him, he admits that the second reason for his coming is to re-embrace Gianluca Ginoble. (His exact words.)“Everyone knows my respect for him, but I should say, my friendship, my affection for him.”
Maggitti’s question is very strong: “What has IL VOLO to do 11 consecutive world tours and still fills all the theaters and what is the appeal of you, great music expert and journalist, who talks about them as famous and well-liked in the world?”
Bartoletti = I could answer you by reversing the question, that is, by asking me how there are still people (even our journalist colleagues) who still do not understand, this success of theirs and their talent. I admit, that I am attached to them by affection, friendship and admiration towards them, but they have everything that is asked of bel canto, skill, the ability to transmit the Italian genius abroad. But it’s the same Italian genius that should be better understood in Italy, and then I wonder, what else do these guys have to prove?
They are boys who have reached their tenth year, and sold out everywhere, even here in Italy. I can only say that I admire them very much, that I admire their “spirit of sacrifice” which is extraordinary, because they could “sit on their laurels”, instead they continue to improve, to improve. This year they were very good, even in Sanremo, where they achieved third place, so very elegantly. I would like the Italian guys to look more like them, especially as the families of the Italian boys were more like the families of Gianluca, Piero and Ignazio, because I always say this publicly, that the strength of these guys is what they have behind them, family, culture, education, humility.
I don’t know for you, but for me to read the beautiful and deserved words of Marino Bartoletti, towards IL VOLO, is like taking a sip of fresh and clear water, when you have a throat burned by thirst.
On August 16th, Piero received an award from his beloved NARO.
Let’s go in order:
This message was published by Piero, I translate the words:
On August 16th evening I will have the pleasure of dedicating time to my splendid NARO: being recognized and honored, from one’s native country, is an honor that is not at all obvious.
Here are the roots, here my story is born: the houses, the alleys, the faces, with which I grew up and of which I could tell a thousand stories.
At the moment, I will tell you only one, the affection I have for my country.
All Naro waits on the beautiful staircase.
Here is the moment of Piero’s arrival.
And here is the awarding of the prize, by the mayor, very proud of our Piero.
Mayor = Meanwhile I wanted to put the institutional band, even if it is wrong (Piero rushes to fix the band), to give the official status of the institution, the solemnity of this moment, to pay our affection, our gratitude, to a great, to an international star, which is Piero. (applause)
Considering that at this moment, I do not feel I am just the mayor of Naro and its 7500 inhabitants, but I feel like the mayor of all the Naresi (inhabitants of Naro) scattered all over the world.
So I make myself an interpreter, of all the Naresi, scattered around the world, to say THANK YOU to Piero, for the emotions he always gives us. I also greet all the friends of Canicattì who are here for Piero.
I will not dwell much, but I must tell you that I am particularly excited. You saw the first part of the video (before calling Piero, they projected a video dedicated to Piero ), well, that little boy was Piero …. (to Piero) I don’t know where your grandfather is … . (Piero indicates with his hand, on the stairway). Pietro, a big hug to Pietro, to whom a family friendship, of many years, binds me.
That mayor of 10 years ago, when Piero started it all, was me.
To give you the prize, I would like to call Magda. (Magda is a small child, new promising star of Naro, Piero goes to meet Magda and kisses her.)
With the hope that in 10 years we will be here again to celebrate even Magda.
Best wishes Piero. (kisses and hugs to Piero and delivery of the prize)
I was at Piero’s house, I saw, how many plaques, how many photos with “the powerful of the world” ….. Piero, but this is the gift of NARO !!!(applause)
One last thing and I finish, a memory, when they, in the theater of Taormina, dedicated the song to their mother, and he bowed and Eleonora, beat the song’s rhythm on his leg ….. Eleonora and Gaetano, thank you for what you you have done, for believing us, for the sacrifices you have made to make him a great man.(applause, a second awarding ceremony continues, during which Vincenzo Porrello gives Piero a special gift.)
And here is the video broadcast by local television. At the beginning Piero sings a beautiful song “NARO FULGENTISSIMA” (I think his grandfather composed it, during the video, while Piero sings, you can see his father Gaetano and his mother Eleonora, sitting on the staircase, near a white lantern.)
Mayor= For us it is a source of great pride, to celebrate 10 years of IL VOLO activity, but in particular, allow me, of our fellow citizen Piero Barone. A boy who is an international star, but who has remained a humble boy, has remained a boy devoted to his city.
I am the mayor of all the Naresi scattered in the world and for us, having Piero Barone this evening, who is the ambassador of the beauties of this city, but above all of the heart and love, of this city, can only make me absolutely happy.
Piero= My first thought, but I also think of all of you here, goes to the Bracco family, for the pain that struck them. (a young citizen of Naro, on vacation on the lake near Rome, drowned … applause).
The love I have for this country, and for our city, will never end.
Host= What do you feel for this city?
Piero= Naro, it’s me, it’s my blood. I grew up here, my whole story is here.
If it’s about my past, it’s all my grandfather’s fault, he gave me my passion for music.
When I was 8, it was he, my grandfather Pietro, who had me engraved, “UN AMORE COSÌ GRANDE”.
In one of those beautiful summer evenings over 10 years ago, my grandfather made my father hear that song, and from that moment, my father, stubborn as he is, every time someone came into the garage (he repaired cars), put me up on the bonnet of cars and made me sing either “GRANADA” or “UN AMORE COSÌ GRANDE”. I couldn’t take any more, every customer heard “GRANADA” or “UN AMORE COSÌ GRANDE”(Piero’s parents laugh).
In the same evening, there was the election of Miss Naro, and here is Piero photographed with all the participants.
Some shots of the evening, thanks to Il Volo Sicilia fanpage.
What a beautiful emotion Piero, to hear you sing that beautiful song dedicated to Naro.
And your words, for your city, fill every citizen with pride.
Bravo Piero !!
Piero Barone with Nonno Piero Ognibene Singing “Naro Fulgentissima”
Surely in these days, this beautiful photo has not escaped you, but perhaps (Italians aside), not everyone knows who this man is that warmly embraces Michele and Gianluca.
He is a very good singer, indeed a true complete artist.
For those who do not know him, Massimo Ranieri is a fantastic singer with excellent vocal talents, but also a good actor, a historian, in the true sense of the word.
The photo below has been posted by Ranieri himself, with a beautiful dedication. He was in Roseto degli Abruzzi, for a concert, which was very successful. Michele and Gianluca also went to his concert.
Ieri magnifica serata a Roseto degli Abruzzi in compagnia dei miei cari amici Gianluca Ginoble e Michele Torpedine.
Yesterday wonderful evening in Roseto degli Abruzzi, in the company of my dear friends Gianluca Ginoble and Michele Torpedine.
Il Volo, in 2016, had already been a guest of a transmission conducted by Massimo Ranieri, entitled SOGNO O SON DESTO?
During that transmission, Gianluca showed the photo with Ranieri, whom he jealously kept in his cell phone.
Here is the video of the evening, it is not of excellent quality but it is seen and feels quite well.
Massimo, at the end of the song “QUANDO L’AMORE DIVENTA POESIA”, presents IL VOLO with these words, “Here they are, these three fantastic, wonderful boys”.
After the pleasantries, Massimo says he was moved when Gianluca showed him the photo, stored in his cell phone.
There is a lot of respect and affection between Gianluca, Ignazio, Piero and Massimo Ranieri.
Another thing you may not know, is that the beautiful song “VENT’ANNI”, sung in concert in 2016 by Gianluca and Piero, is a song brought to success by a young Massimo Ranieri.
And here is the video of Massimo Ranieri who sings “VENT’ANNI” during Canzonissima (a transmission of songs) of 1970. Massimo was 19, the song was a great success.
And here, the beautiful words of the lyrics of the song.
La mia vita cominciò Come l’erba come il fiore E mia madre mi baciò Come fossi il primo amore
La la la la la La la la la la
Nasce cosi La vita mia Come comincia Una poesia
Io credo che lassù C’era un sorriso anche per me La stessa luce che Si accende quando nasce un re
Una stella una chitarra Primo amore biondo e mio Con l’orgoglio dei vent’anni Piansi, ma vi dissi addio
E me ne andai Verso il destino Con l’entusiasmo Di un bambino
Io credo che lassù C’era un sorriso anche per me La stessa luce che
si accende quando nasce un re.
Io credo che lassù…..
My life began Like grass like a flower And my mother kissed me How I was the first love
La la la la La la la la
Thus was born My life How it begins A poem
I believe that up there There was a smile for me too The same light that It lights up when a king is born
A star a guitar First blonde love and mine With the pride of twenty years I cried, but I said you goodbye
And I left To destiny With enthusiasm Of a child
I believe that up there There was a smile for me too The same light that
It lights up when a king is born
I believe that up there……
Did you enjoy getting to know Massimo Ranieri better?
What do you think of his performance at 19?
Credit to owners of all photos and videos.
Come in and share the love of life, friends and Il Volo!