Oblivion (the company that made the videos of IL VOLO) has published this video.
This is another backstage of L’AMORE SI MUOVE, but this time the boys were filmed during a stop of filming, in Piazza di Montepagano.
We all know how Gianluca is proud of his Montepagano.
I will translate his short speech.
Gian: Hi everyone, I’m here in the backstage of L’AMORE SI MUOVE.
We had the opportunity to record this music video in my country where I was born and raised. A shot at the bell tower of Montepagano, look how beautiful it is.
I want to welcome my colleagues.
(He turns to Piero who teases Gianluca and does not collaborate)
Greet the cameramen, welcome to my village Montepagano.
Greet the camera, they are happy, smile … (but Piero remains stubbornly serious and then Gianluca turns to Ignazio)
Ignazio: If you put yourself in front of me how do I smile?
Gian: Give a smile to the camera.
Torpedo: Say hello to the camera.
Gian: Oh well, I’m happy alone. Bye
Poor Gianluca, nobody understands him.
Video credit to Oblivion Production
One is never too old to learn. How did I miss this amazing looking school along my life’s journey? I want to become a student once again and study at this incredible looking place! My dream/wish is that a group of Flight Crew people would all go over together and immerse ourselves in this beautiful culture, language, and people. To sit at tables on a beautiful patio, surrounded by flowers and country side where you view rolling hills and cypress trees as far as the eye can see, while sharing wine and our life stories with each other. To go to the market together and choose fresh ingredients, then gather around a small table in a warm Italian kitchen and learn the art of making true Italian pasta. To study and have fun learning as a group their beautiful romantic language. I may be a dreamer, but it’s a beautiful thought.
FOR OVER 30 YEARS, Il SASSO ITALIAN LANGUAGE SCHOOL …
has been running courses in Montepulciano, in the heart of Tuscany. The school offers Italian courses for speakers of other languages studying in small groups and individually. There are six different levels, corresponding to the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages. Il Sasso also runs art history, wine, cookery, literature and current affairs mini-courses, as well as courses to prepare students for the CELI and CILS exams. The school is recognised by the Italian Education Ministry and certified to ISO 9001:2008 standards. It is a medium sized school with a reputation for excellence, and is open all year round. Students of all ages come to study here from all over the world.
Enjoy this fun video.
Article excerpt and video credits to L’Italo-Americano Newspaper
Photo of Tuscany countryside from Tuscanyphotos.com
Christmas In Italy
From Kathy McCabe, Dream of Italy.
While millions of people travel to Italy during the summer months, if they only knew the treasures that would await them by taking a winter break instead and enjoying the magic of Christmas in Italy. Yes, the holiday has become a bit more commercialized here in recent years. Yet, Christmas in Italy is still a holiday of family, spirituality, food, lights, age-old artistry and the wonder of miracles.
From the Christmas markets in Alto-Aldige to a 250-person strong live Nativity pageant in Puglia, there are Christmas enchantments and surprises in every corner of Italy.
Piero, Ignazio, and Gianluca we know you are back home in your beloved Italy just in time for the holidays. Here are our Christmas wishes just for you…
I wish you precious time to be surrounded by the loving people who are so important to you in your life.
Credit to all owners of photos.
Article excerpt from Dream Of Italy.
Today I would like to talk about truffles. No, not the chocolate kind . . . though they are ever so delicious and so-named because they do indeed resemble a real truffle.
I am speaking of the diamond of the culinary world, a truffle, or tartufo in Italian . . . a rare, edible mushroom that is considered to be a delicacy due to its intense aroma and characteristic flavor. They have a firm texture and are most often shaven on top of food before serving, although they can also be used to infuse flavor into dishes. Though there are hundreds of different species, only some — mostly those found in the genus Tuber — are considered delicacies. Truffles grow underground in symbiotic relationships with trees and are difficult to find; as a result, they are usually harvested in the wild by hogs and trained dogs.
Among the most popular of the different types of mushrooms that are used in foods are white mushrooms, morels, truffles and portabella mushrooms. I personally LOVE morel mushrooms! I’d really like to try some truffles to see how they compare.
Truffles are usually classified mainly based on their appearance, smell, and taste. Found in a variety of regions around the world, many are commonly known by their location rather than their technical name. Their value varies depending on their rarity and specific aromatic qualities; the rarest are the most expensive food in the world.
The French black or Périgord truffle, Tuber melanosporum, is prized for its aromatic and fruity qualities. When fresh, it has a brown-black exterior with white veins on the inside. It ranges in size from a pea to an orange, and weighs up to 2.2 pounds (1 kg). These truffles are found in the Périgord region of southwestern France.
The very rare Italian white or Piedmont truffle, Tuber magnatum, has the strongest smell of all truffles. At its freshest, it has a smooth, dirty beige surface that ages to a brown. It ranges from walnut-to apple-size, weighing up to 1 pound (0.45 kg). Found in primarily in the Piedmont region in north-west Italy, its aroma and flavor decrease approximately one to two weeks after harvest.
Other notable varieties include the Oregon White truffle, the Chinese truffle, and the Summer truffle. The two varieties of the Oregon White — Tuber oregonese and Tuber gibbosum — are white when immature and develop into an orange-brown and a pale olive-brown, respectively, at maturity. The brown Chinese varieties — Tuber sinense and Tuber indicum — are found in South China and are often harvested before they have fully matured, making them less expensive and more readily available. Found in France, Italy, and Spain, the summer truffle — Tuber aestivum — is the most common truffle, and exhibits a more delicate aroma.
Harvesting and Hunting
Found approximately one foot (30 cm) under the ground, the vegetative part of the fungi — the mycelia — forms a symbiotic relationship with the roots of a variety of species of trees. Since they grow underground, truffles rely on animals to eat them and scatter their spores in order to reproduce. The strong odor of the mature truffle is what allows animals to locate them.
Truffle hunting is a lucrative business when they are in season, from fall through spring. In North America, raking back the soil and searching by sight is the usual method for harvesting. In Europe, hunters use truffle hogs and specially-trained dogs to sniff them out. The female truffle hogs become alert to the scent of the mature truffle because it is similar to the pheromones of the male hog’s saliva. The sow is difficult to hold back, however, and will readily eat the expensive delicacy if allowed to do so. In Italy, the use of the pig to hunt truffles has been prohibited since 1985 because of damage caused by animals to truffle’s mycelia during the digging that dropped the production rate of the area for some years.
For this reason, many hunters have begun to use truffle dogs, with the Lagotto Romagnolo being the only breed specifically recognized for this trait as of 2009. If you’re thinking Italian sports car, think again. This curly-coated dog is an Italian truffle hunter who is generally smart, energetic and fun-loving. Though they lack the innate ability of the hog to detect the scent, dogs can be specially trained to do so. The advantage comes when the truffle is located, as the dog is much less likely to eat it.
Click on the photo above to learn more about these amazing dogs!
Truffles must be carefully handled to preserve their aroma and flavor. They should be cleaned of any dirt or debris, washed with water, and dried with a paper towel. To develop their aroma after being harvested, they should be placed in an airtight container lined with paper towels and stored in the refrigerator for approximately three days. They can be stored in a glass jar for several months, but should never be dried as this will cause them to lose their pungency.
As cooking dissipates their flavor, truffles are most often served raw. They can be sliced, scraped, or grated on top of ready-to-serve dishes, sauces, or soups. They also pair well with fattier foods, such as cheeses, butters, oils, and eggs.
Infusing flavor into foods creates another use for the truffle. Thin slices of the fungus inserted just under the skin allows meats to readily absorb the flavor. Only small amounts are needed to make truffle butter, as the aroma will flavor the entire batch. It should be noted that, while they can be added to olive oil to infuse their flavor, most “truffle oil” doesn’t actually contain any truffles.
If you’d like to read more about truffles check out this great website – L’Italo-Americano:
Grazie to Gina Hanna for this post idea and information!
Credit also to all owners of photos and websites.
Let’s recap a bit, shall we? I know it’s been a while. I can’t believe it’s been over a year now. I guess I’ve just been a bit busy?
We started in Florence, then Venice, and Verona. We are now on our way from Verona to Rome….
We caught our train from Verona to Rome, a 3-hour trip, and were looking forward to the long ride to get a little shut eye, as our train LEFT at 7am. We safely arrived in Rome; again, enjoying a little prosecco on the way. We had reserved a car at the train station and it was in Lorna’s name, since she was driving. I could not drive a manual transmission. We managed to find our way to the main street and waited in line for the taxi. I had the address, but could not figure out where it was from the train station. We did not see any signs for auto anywhere. After the nearly 30 minute wait for the taxi, in the hot sun, we we finally get in and show the driver the address. He says, “that is around the block!” Ok, then take us around the block. He still charged us 10 euros to go around the block. He dropped us off and I still did not see any signs for cars. I walked inside. There were tons of crowds. I figured we had to take a number and there were different ones for each rental company. I told Lorna to go in, since the car was in her name and I’d watch the bags. By now it was nearly 11am. Our train got there on time at 10am.
After about an hour, it was finally her turn. There were only 2 or 3 people ahead of us, but it took forever! About 20 minutes later, we had our paperwork and out the door we went. Lorna said it was out the door, a few turns down the block and the garage was on our right and the car on the 6th level. We walked in circles and could not find it. I went back to the car place and asked again where it was. The address was on the back of the paperwork – duh! Ok, Google maps, once again, to our rescue! As we were walking, we ran into a Swedish couple, also looking for this same garage. We finally found it and the elevator and rode to the 6th floor. We finally make it! By now, it’s about 12:30p or so. I had reserved the car for 10:30a. We were tired and hungry. We go get the car and all they had left was a Peugeot SUV! Not the size car you want to drive around in Rome! When we finally got on the road, it was about 1:00pm – nearly 3 hours later!
Getting out of Rome was a little harrowing, but we made it to the highway and we were on our way. I texted Dani to let her know we had finally left Rome. Silvi was about 2.5 hours due east of Rome. I told her if we weren’t there by 4:00pm to send out the guard!
The road to Silvi was gorgeous. I had brought our solos/duets CDs to give to Dani and we played them on our way. Ah, what could be better than being serenaded by our guys on our way to the sea? It was a sunny day with blue skies and big, puffy clouds and the mountains – oh so bella!! About 3:30p, Dani texted back and asked us if we were there yet. We took a slight detour, but got back on the main road again. We were getting pretty close and started seeing signs for Pescara. By about 4p, we finally made it to our hotel. We saw glimpses of the Adriatic Sea – it was breathtaking!
Our hotel was on a high hill! Lorna put it in gear and up we went. Good thing she was driving. It was probably about 4:30pm or so by the time we got settled into our room. I texted Dani and told her we had finally arrived. We decided to meet at Murphy’s Irish Pub, on the beach, at 6pm. Ok, here we were in Italy and we were eating at an Irish Pub – the irony!! We had a short nap and then made our way down to the beach and restaurant.
Down the hill we went, and down the street, down another, hang a left and then a right, and there we were! I had seen pictures of Dani, so I had an idea of what she looked like and she, me. I think she spotted us first.
We decided to stroll the beach, first, while it was still light outside and I took a few pictures. I took my shoes off and was walking in the sea. The water was warm, just like bathwater. We sat down for a little bit, taking in the sights. The beach was pretty deserted by that time in the evening. I picked up a few shells for souvenirs. We were getting really hungry by then, so we went back to the restaurant.
We looked at the menu and it was full of various pizzas and calzones and appetizers. We decided on the famous arrosticini to try. I couldn’t resist passing up a calzone called “Boschetto,” which consisted of spinach, mushrooms, cheese, and sausage. Italians don’t seem to be as much into tomato sauce as Americans. Lorna opted for a hamburger and fries. Dani had a pizza with just cherry tomatoes, basil, and mozzarella. We all loved the arrosticini, as you can see from our picture! 😊
Of course, everything was delicious and the conversation lovely. Dani speaks very good English, so it was easy for us to understand her. Before the evening was over, we decided to meet the next morning and go into Montepagano to see if we could find where Gianluca and his family were…
We went back to our hotel, completely exhausted and fell into bed. We slept so long, we literally slept through our breakfast time, but it was the first time in 4 days that we didn’t have to get up before the crack of dawn! However, I did get up at the crack of dawn, so I could take a few pictures of the sunrise. Very similar to many that Leonora posts! After I took my pictures, I promptly went back to sleep!
We called Dani when we finally woke up and agreed to meet at the bottom of the hill where our hotel was. Dani did not drive, so her sister dropped her off. We then went to lunch at one of the restaurants on the beach. On the way, we went down this fairly narrow, one-way street. The street dipped and there was this really low overpass. We had no choice, we had to get to the road that ran with the sea, and we couldn’t really turn around. So, we forged ahead and as we went under the overpass, all we heard was this frightful rumbling sound as we drove, very slowly, ahead. Lorna and I were fearful of what we might find when we got out, imagining the whole roof of the car being scraped! Cautiously, we got out and held our breath and looked. Nothing! We realized it was just the antenna that was hitting the top of the overpass. Whew! Escaped that one!!
Dani asked us what we wanted and she ordered for us. I had some penne with tomato sauce and some prosciutto with melon. Dani had some kind of pasta with clams or some type of seafood with these little shells and I think Lorna just had prosciutto and melon. The wine and pop were so cheap. I think I drank a whole bottle of frizzante though! After lunch, our adventure to Montepagano awaited. When we left that morning and were getting closer to the restaurant, the skies looked a bit threatening, but it was pretty far off. As we left the restaurant, it was getting closer and closer, as we drove toward the little mountainous town. As soon as we hit the street that went uphill, these big splats of rain, bombed our windshield…. TO BE CONTINUED….. Next – A stroll through L’Amore Si Muove! 🙂
Several months ago now, our group at work did a painting event for charity. The painting that was chosen was entitled “Dandelion Dreams.” You are probably wondering how this relates to Il Volo, but wait and see!!
I canvassed the internet, looking for things related to dandelions – wishes and dreams. There is a plethora of notations! Many references were about weeds vs. wishes, nice little sayings, a few poems here and there, even a song or two, and of course if you blow on the seeds of the dandelion flower, you are granted a wish and it comes true. How many of us, as children, found such joy in blowing the seeds into the wind and watching them float away? How many dandelions were wished upon and how many came true? I found several nice sites, which I will reference throughout…
There is one saying in particular I found, through Google Images…..it said, “we made a wish and you came true…” How many of us were possibly wishing for something like Il Volo, but just didn’t know it when we were younger? Maybe some of us wished for happiness, love, friends, joy, or maybe even just some beautiful harmony, in a world filled with discord. Maybe we thought our wishes never came true; that they were just whimsies of childhood, and quickly forgotten as we matured into adulthood, as swiftly as the wind carried the seeds toward the skies.
But, unbeknown to us, the Universe was listening. It took a while, maybe 20, 30, or 40 years or more even, for some, however, far off in the land of Italy and Sicily, our wishes were heard. In the cities of Montepagano, Bologna, and Naro; our little seeds and wishes were planted – and they grew. They grew into Il Volo! Our precious Gianluca, Ignazio, and Piero. A culmination of all of our wishes. Our wishes may have seemed selfish at the time, but the Universe was wise and knew that the purity of the heart of a child, was truly selfless. It knew, when these three voices were joined together, the dreams, hopes, and desires of not just those who wished for them, but for those all over the world would share in this miracle.
Each breath they take and each note they sing, carries the sweet seeds of sound to our ears. As the notes enter our spirit, we feel joy and happiness. We also find the love and the harmony of new friendships. All of this, from one little dandelion wish!
From http://www.flowermeaning.com/dandelion-flower-meaning/ I thought the meaning of the dandelion flower below was very fitting to Il Volo and the many difficulties they have faced already in their career.
What Does the Dandelion Flower Mean?
The common and humble Dandelion has a surprising amount of different meanings. The Dandelion means:
- Healing from emotional pain and physical injury alike (how many of us have said they have healed us?)
- Intelligence, especially in an emotional and spiritual sense (all 3 are very wise, even at their young ages)
- The warmth and power of the rising sun (O Sole Mio!)
- Surviving through all challenges and difficulties (each one of them have had to overcome some personal challenge)
- Long lasting happiness and youthful joy (even when they are 70, they will still be Il Volo, like at the end of L’amore Si Muove video!)
- Getting your wish fulfilled (they still wish for the US Grammy, could that still be in their future?)
Since the Dandelion can thrive in difficult conditions, it is no wonder that people say the flower symbolizes the ability to rise above life’s challenges. (remember, in the beginning, even their own country did not recognize them and some critics still despise them! And yet, they continue to sing to sold-out concerts, world-wide!)
There is also a song, whose words reflect their essence….
From a song by John Adams, called Dandelion Wishes… (select phrases from the song) https://www.musixmatch.com/lyrics/John-Adams-11/Dandelion-Wishes
“How would it be if I never found you
Would I be me? Would you be you? Everybody’s searching for the one, Oh but darling you found me Everybody’s searching for the one Oh but maybe there’s two or even three?
Dandelion wishes Blow in different ways If the wind should change directions If my wishes were to fall would you love me anyway?
How would it be if I never found you Thankfully, we’ll never know!”
Oh, how some of those words just ring so true with our guys, don’t they?
So, the next time you see a dandelion, make a wish – you never know when or how it may come true!
I think Cynthia asked me about my other little piece of art – below is a little triptych of my painted wine glass…my Tuscan sunset from just a little over a year ago! 🙂 (yes, this was a first, never before attempted, free-hand – very impressionistic!)
(musical notes photo found on Google Images…)