Happy New Year! I know things are not looking so great right now but let’s hope this whole thing will pass soon! And let’s not forget we are only two months away from the World Tour!
Each week I receive many emails from the fans. Some giving their opinions on the column or an opinion on something that happened during the week. Many ask questions and ask if I can forward their questions to the guys! So, in my column today I want to share some of these emails and see if we can get some answers to your questions. I must say some of you have interesting questions.
Let’s start with this letter from Barbara Gabriel that I received this week.
Barbara Gabriel – Sat, Jan 1
First thank you for your beautifully well written updates.
I’m just wondering if you can provide me the date of Il Volo’s concert held in San Diego at a small venue called Humphrey’s Half Moon Inn a few years ago.
My husband of 57 years and I attended one there. He recently passed the end of July and I’m just trying to remember. We loved the ragazzi then and I still do. I enjoy their music of all genres, especially the Bel Canto since my grandparents immigrated from Udine and my husband’s grandparents from Calabria. They all came to America seeking better lives for their families. Additionally, I speak a bit of Spanish and appreciate the Hispanic culture and music.
Their music is healing during these sad times. I hope they continue making beautiful music and never lose their path.
Wishing you and Il Volo all the best. Thank for reading my email and if you are able to provide the concert date it will fill in a memory gap. But no worries if not. Looking forward to hearing from you.
If anyone knows the date of the concert at Humphrey Half Moon Inn, could you, please let me know.
Gale asked a good question in her recent email.
GALE SIMONIS – Fri, Dec 31
Oh Susan. I really admire your talent and because of that and your devotion to our guys you continue to inform, amuse and delight us with your loving accounts of life in IL Volo sphere. Gosh it really comes to life for us.
The new music is almost indescribable; so many flourishing adjectives but for me one song hovers over the rest. Come Sail Away has my heart, my tears and my memories.
I want to know how the maestro came about writing this song.
What inspired him?
Susan, you have abilities beyond, and I know you are a fan of this song too. If anyone can check this out, I think you can. I would love to hear if there is a back story.
Happy New Year Susan and please know we await your
Next message, recollection and update.
Above all Thank you, Grazie mille.
I totally agree with Gale, this is a beautiful song, and I am very taken by it. I believe this is a song that was not written for a movie but that is all I really know about it. If anyone knows the answer, could you please let me know.
Beautiful, truthful, words from Sally Kevers
Sally Evers – Fri, Dec 17, 2021
Loved your latest story on Flight Crew. You marvel at how these three stars (our Il Volo) are so kind and accessible to their fans, unlike most performers. I have a short example that still amazes me every time I think of it, and I can’t think of Ignazio without remembering his amazing kindness. I wrote about this before in a Flight Crew posting, but you may have missed it.
At the 2020 Atlanta Ten Year Concert I had tickets along with a good friend. Regrettably, I did not get meet and greet because I knew she could not afford that too. I did help her sign up for the fan club so that we could both go to the soundcheck before the concert.
At the soundcheck we were all seated on the second row of the theater. I was seat number 3 and my friend, number 4 starting from the left side. There was an empty row of seats in front of us all except there were no seats where the first two seats on each end would have been (the row is off set). I suspect they seat us on the second row on purpose to keep their fans from mobbing them all at once. We were all polite and stayed seated and quiet while Gianluca and Piero both practiced their numbers with the orchestra. Ignazio was nowhere to be seen. Both Gianluca and Piero came over to greet us, each individually, when they were finished with their warmup.
After their greetings, the lady sitting in seat number 2 to my immediate left, accidentally dropped her iPhone on the floor and she frantically tried to find it under her seat without getting up. The theater was dark so she couldn’t see anything, and the seats are cramped so there was not any room to maneuver. She literally had her head between her legs groping on the floor (I’m sure she was mortified!). At that precise moment Ignazio comes down the aisle behind us (we are totally unaware of this), pivots in a grand gesture (so like him!) and presents his hand to the lady in seat number 1. She is momentarily shocked but recovers quickly and talks with Ignazio and gives him a present. Then he moves along to the lady in seat number 2. She is still in her unladylike-like posture groping for her phone on the floor! She has no idea that anyone is standing there in front of her, much less that it is Ignazio! I don’t know her at all, but I start tapping her on her back trying to tell her it’s Ignazio! She’s “not receiving” any input and keeps looking for her phone. Ignazio immediately understands the situation and stands perfectly still, hands patiently clasped and patiently WAITS until this lady finally sits up, phone in her hand, when she is shocked to find Ignazio facing her! Only then did he offer to shake her hand and graciously greet her. He acted as though he had all the time in the world! This was MINUTES before the performance! He moved on to greet each and every fan seated in that long row, not hurrying at all! What other performer do you know of who would even consider doing that? They all would have just quickly moved along to the next fan, leaving that poor woman missing out on the thrill of meeting Ignazio. Or, more likely, they would have skipped the whole meet the fans thing.
Small gesture I know, but this so impressed me! What a kind and generous heart he has!
Yes, Sally that is true Ignazio. Always polite and patient!
Love from Montreal Canada
Judith Phillips – Thu, Dec 16, 2021
Thank you for your wonderful post – the first I’ve received since discovering Flight Crew and signing up for e-mails.
I was not aware that so many others were as concerned as I about “the guys” when COVID hit. Having no family and only friends who call my passion for Il Volo “misguided” and “crazy”, I can discuss them with no one.
Though I have marveled at how the stars aligned just so that these three would meet, be so devoted to such a grand passion at such a young age and form the bond they have, until reading your post, I was not aware of their love for and gratitude towards their fans. They give so much and, as you said, “…family are the people who are there for you every day…”; perhaps I can begin to understand the connection I have always felt with Il Volo (maybe not crazy?).
The guys will perform in my city (Montreal) on March 6th; what I wouldn’t give to be in attendance (entry by “e-ticket only” and no smart phone…). I will, however, be there in spirit – though not the same – while three ethereal voices fill the concert hall with their magnificent sound. I hope fans appreciate the long, hard hours of work they put into preparing a concert, recording, rehearsing, signing, touring etc. etc. to bring us such immense joy.
These three beautiful souls deserve only love, happiness and peace in their lives. May they be together for many years to come.
Again, many thanks,
Judith, Montreal Canada
If anyone knows how Judith can get around this entry by “e-ticket only,” since she does not have a smart phone, please let me know and I will pass on the info. All you Canadians got any suggestions?
Even in pain the fans follow
Susan Torres – Wed, Dec 15, 2021
I would like to share my story which is similar to other fans. I have followed Il Volo since the first PBS concert. I’ve been to 6 concerts even traveled to Rome for one. I’ve bought every CD and DVD. In February 2020, I had a back and hip injury shortly before the concert in Tampa Florida. I was in the hospital but insisted on being discharged so I could go to the concert. I took pain pills and for a couple of hours I was in a magical world. Then I flew to Dallas for the concert there because I already had tickets. Again, with the help of pain medication I attended the concert, and it was even better. They left shortly thereafter but their music has stayed with us during this difficult time. I listen to them every day and every time I get in the car. Every time I have an MRI, I ask for Il Volo music. I wonder if they realize how much their music means to us and helps us to keep going. I love the new album and I look forward to the concert next year in Dallas for which I already have tickets. I will try to attend more if possible.
I forgot to mention that I visited your lovely country 2 times because of the bel canto introduced to me by Il Volo and I’m also taking Italian language lessons to try to learn your beautiful language.
WOW! Susan! That’s amazing and she’s learning Italian!
A message especially for Ignazio!
Donna Hackler – Thu, Dec 9, 2021
First of all, thank you Susan for your Xmas post!!! If there is any possible way for this to reach Ignazio, I think he’d be happy to know, and I’d be more than grateful. Ignazio was only 16 years old, and he saved my life. I am 72 years old and live with severe pain all the time and had become suicidal. Seeing the guys on pbs changed my life – just wanting to see and hear them. Ignazio was the chubby little Italian boy next door with a head of curls and the voice of an angel, for years I could visualize him between 3 &. 8. Finally got over that since he’s grown into such a loving caring man. I just wanted to thank him and Piero and Gian as well I’d have not been here and missed a lot of special people if not for Il Volo. Thank you to you, the guys, their team & Merry Christmas to all with love. DH
I’m sure Ignazio and the guys will love your message and will be very happy they were able to help you through your difficult days.
Planning a trip to Sicily.
Magdalena Shaw – Sun, Nov 28, 2021
Susan, I love the way you write about these three fantastic guys.
Keep on doing it, please.
It is very easy to love them! So special!
I am planning a trip to Sicily and hope to see them in concert in Taormina.
Nice to read your articles.
I am from Montevideo, Uruguay, but now a days I live in Punta del Este, a very special place, by the sea.
I hope to see you in Taormina!
This is a message I get at least once a week.
Kate Spencer – Thu, Nov 11, 2021
Thank you for such a great article. It was lovely and informative.
I feel very pleased for everyone in America and North America that they will get the chance to see the guys perform again.
But I’m also sad that for some reason they don’t come and sing in England. We do have quite a few fans which I know, like me, would love to see them in concert.
As it is I’m enjoying the latest album very much!
Thank you again for the report 🙂
Hey guys! Go to England!
Loves it all Nico too!
Antonela Molalyiska – Fri, Oct 8, 2021
Dear Susan, thanks for the nice stuff. Ignazio always surprises me, not only with his singing and composing, but also with his tender soul. Nico is also a gentle, artistic soul. Mr. Torpedine is a talent scout! The videos gave me great pleasure. I miss the translation of the text …. 😰 But even without translation, it is a great experience to follow the development of both Inga and Niko. I’m waiting for new products.💚
Did you get that Ignazio?
Going back to Radio City Music Hall
Lill Pierce – Thu, Jul 1, 2021
My name is Lillian Pierce, but most people call me Lill. I live in the California Bay Area in a town called Brentwood (not the Brentwood in Los Angeles). I am 66 years old.
My Grandfather Pellegrino Giannini was from Sesto Moriano in Lucca, Italy. My grandmother Ana Sanchez was from Uneda, Spain.
My mother grew up listening to opera music and bel canto, therefore, I also grew up listening to it at home.
One of my greatest memories is of my cousin and I taking my mom, his mom and their cousin to see The Three Tenors in Los Angeles in the late 90’s.
In 2019 I was to have each of my knees replaced, one after the other. Pre-surgery blood tests found a problem with my Blood counts, and, after many tests and scans, a tumor was found in my left kidney and another directly above it in my adrenal gland. The doctors were sure they were malignant. I decided the organs should be removed. The surgery was in the middle of March. I was extremely fortunate that only the kidney tumor was malignant. I did not need any further treatment.
Unfortunately, about three weeks later, my lungs were filled with fluid, and I was hospitalized for a week. It turned out to be a knick during surgery caused lymphatic fluid to fill my lungs. I was sent home with a drain from my back and a very special diet. If that did not work, I would have to have another surgery to insert a feeding tube for approximately two months to allow it to heal.
I was determined to not need the feeding tube and followed the directions from my doctor. After 8 weeks, the leak healed itself.
In June 2019 I had my left knee replaced. I recovered very quickly and had my right knee replaced less than three months later.
I call 2019 my Year From Hell.
I had first seen Il Volo while watching Entourage with my son. I later saw their PBS special from Palermo.
While I was stuck at home for most of the year, I rediscovered Ignazio, Piero and Gianluca on the internet.
I watched video after video and became a dedicated fan. They kept me entertained and helped me pass the time during recovery and physical therapy. I decided that when I had fully recovered, I would go to a concert, but not locally. I wanted a destination show. So, in January 2020, with a few friends, I saw them at Radio City Music Hall. It was wonderful!
I am waiting for tickets to go on sale for the next Radio City concert so I can see them again. I am sure I will also see them locally as well.
I so enjoy your Facebook posts and your stories posted on Il Volo Flight Crew. Thank you, also, for giving me something to help me pass the time a couple years ago.
Thanks for letting me share my story.
I’m happy the guys helped you recuperate. I’m happy you got to see the guys at Radio City Music Hall. I was also there that night, and it was truly amazing! Hope to see you at Radio City in March!
Many of you know Jacquie Milligan. This is a beautiful farewell letter and a wonderful tribute to her.
Judy Paullin Thurman – Mon, Sep 20, 2021
One day in 2014 I noticed a fun post by a lady named Jacquie Milligan while I was scrolling through some fan groups of an Italian singing trio. I left a comment and Jacquie commented back. A friendship that would last seven years was born! We had one thing in common… those 3 boys. I live near Nashville, TN and she lived on an island near Seattle, WA. The boys who were about 18, 19, and 20 years old by then were just about the only thing we had in common with each other… but they were enough. We had both fallen under the spell first of their surprisingly mature voices and then also of their adorable personalities. By the time we “met” online Jacquie and I had each followed the group called IL VOLO which means “The Flight” in Italian, for many years. So, from the beginning there was never a dull, quiet moment with nothing to say. We both had a favorite among the three! Because of his personality we were drawn to Ignazio. But the other two, Piero and Gianluca, were just as talented and equally loved. Jacquie called Ignazio her “Sunshine Boy” and he was exactly that in her life! At first, we chatted online. We talked about the latest photos and videos, we talked about their home life, their parents and siblings. The boys shared all that online. We had seen their birthday parties inside the home of each guy’s family. When on the sad occasion of a grandparent passing, we saw the heartbroken post that simply said, “Ciao Nonno” (Goodbye Grampa). These things drew us all closer to the families of the teenagers who started international touring when they were 15, 16, and 17. Time flew by and we were soon talking almost every night except when I traveled to Italy and the time zones between us were numerous. Eventually we started calling each other and I heard her sweet voice which seemed to be that of a much younger lady than her actual years!
Now these teenagers were grown up, performing all over the US and South America, also from Moscow to Tokyo, Argentina to Brazil, Mexico City to London at the most prestigious venues. They played for kings and queens, presidents and even the Pope. Each new success was dear to our hearts, so Jacquie and I filled her late-night hours with their amazing accomplishments. It was fun for me to bring the many concerts I attended over the years in the US, Italy and once in London to her world which had become limited to just her home on Whidbey Island.
Jacquie has friends all over the world who miss chatting with her online and when that was no longer possible, they still wrote to her Facebook page and left messages that I would share with her.
Goodbye dear Jacquie. Your departure was rather sudden, but you are not forgotten. The last time we spoke she was her same spunky self and that is how I will always remember her. We playfully talked about flying to Rome in our dreams that night and we would see “the boys,” our Il Volo! Sweet dreams!!!
Thank you, Judy, you’ve said it all! And Farewell Jacquie!
The day always comes when they see the light!
Barbara Lenox – Sun, Aug 29, 2021
My eldest son (59.9) has been quietly anguished for some time because his mother seems to be obsessed with Il Volo. Recently, at a gathering of in- laws, he overhears his bro-in-law (a VIP in NY who shall remain nameless) raving about this terrific Italian group that he and his wife have been following and taking in every show that they can drive to for a few years, hoping they get back to NY soon. He puts me on the phone with the man (not young) and of course I tell him March 18, RCMH. Oh boy, he’s all excited!
All of a sudden, the old lady becomes much smarter and a musical genius! Everything is relative – or relativeS!
Barbara Gorham Lenox. Boston girl
Great story Barbara! I’ve heard it before!
Brussels loves you too guys!
Louise van Hemert
ik heb ignazio mogen volgen via rai 1ik vergat geen zaterdag ti lascio canzone te bekijken geniet nog dagelijks van de c/d heb ook 3 keer een concert bezocht 2x in SICILA 1X BRUSSEL ik wens ze nog heel veel succes toe wens ook alle veel gezondheid toe
I have been allowed to follow Ignazio via rai 1. I did not forget to watch a Saturday of Ti Lascio una Canzone and I still enjoy daily the c/d. I have also gone to concerts 3 times 2x in SICILA 1X BRUSSELS. I wish them a lot of success also wish all a lot of health
Thank you, Brussels!
Admiration and love for these young men.
Gina Dillon – Wed, Aug 25, 2021
Your story about Ignazio is so beautiful and says a lot of what I have thought about him just by watching him. My thought is that he, unlike Gianluca & Piero, seems vulnerable. When a child deals with the issues he did with his mother, it changes them. His mother was sick and gone a good part of his younger childhood and that affects the child for the rest of their life. There is a compassion to him that is very visible. Watch him with kids – amazing! I do have to say all three of these young men are very good and kind with children which is something you rarely seen in performers (especially male) and at their ages.
I enjoy watching all of their videos, but it is very interesting to single Ignazio out and yes, watch what he does on stage. He is very much in step with the orchestra, and you can just see the wheels turning. I believe he is a little more grounded and serious than the other two and again, I attribute it to the way he was raised. It is also about personality and this young man has dreams and ambition.
I totally agree, Ignazio is still grieving the loss of his father and I am sure has had to step in and help his mother and sister through all of this. This is where the covid mess has helped him. He doesn’t have to worry about being gone as much and can be there for his family and for himself. Also, let’s not forget, there is a new lady in his life. Ignazio’s life if quite full.
There is absolutely no reason for anyone to have an unkind word about these three beautiful young men. These guys conduct themselves in a manner in which we would wish for all young people, especially in the entertainment business. I have nothing but admiration and love for these young men. I pray that they stay united in their love for one another and keep bringing us their beautiful music with those God given extraordinary voices.
That’s beautiful Gina!
They turned out to be geniuses!
Virginia Kohks – Thu, Aug 19, 2021
This was such a very delightful story because it shows just what a wonderful story it truly is.
Anyone who thought they could throw three teenage boys of such talent together without challenges is either a little crazy or extremely brave! But he turned out to be genius. He saw the potential and trusted his instincts as well as the boys and their families. The result of the boys growing into such wonderful young men speaks so well of their parents and their upbringing. And everyone around them during this maturing process can be very proud of the result.
Having had four teenagers to raise at a time in my life I know what a challenge teenagers can be under normal circumstances. And these were not normal circumstances.
These talented teenagers after all acted like every other teenager except, they were amazingly talented and had such wonderful aspirations.
Earlier you wrote about how they would argue about who got to sit in the front seat of the car. Such an argument is so typical of teenagers. That was a common issue with my teenagers who called that “riding shotgun.”
I have often wondered just how difficult it was to throw these three talented teenage strangers together and have such an incredible outcome. We, the fans, benefit from the results. So, this recent story that is often in their own words about their experiences and how sudden stardom was overwhelming is just wonderfully written and a joy to read.
Thank you so much for the stories. It makes us feel we are a bit more involved with knowing each one of them as we have a peek into their lives.
Yes, riding shotgun it is! Virginia responded to my response with the following
virginia kohks – Tue, Aug 24, 2021
I’m sorry to have to ask this but is there a way to receive an autographed photo of Il Volo without having to pay? I’m 81 years old and on a fixed income but would love to have a photo. I adore these young men.
Thanks so much.
She adores you guys!
The Tribute that intrigued!
Emily Peretz – Thu, Aug 5, 2021
I read with real eagerness your article on the performance of Il Volo in honor of Ennio Morricone. My name is Emily Peretz and I live in Israel. My father was born in Florence, Italy and from there I had a great love for Italian music.
Every word you wrote was just right! I watched this show a few times because it was perfect!! I laughed and cried during the show. I’m used to seeing Piero, Ignacio and Gianluca laughing, fooling around, and having fun on stage. This time … I saw completely different guys (in the good sense of the word) … As they entered the stage it just hit me! Their beauty! (You can see how beautiful they are only when they are together), their seriousness, the excitement … It is obvious that they went through a shaky experience! They sang only a week after Vito’s death; this is the hardest thing there is!
But I have no doubt Ignazio would not have made this show without the support of Piero and Gianluca. I was so excited to read that Gianluca went to Sicily to be with Ignacio along with Piero during this hard period! There is no guy like him! And together they did everything to make the show so successful. And not only that … They supported him mentally.
At the show I noticed that Piero supported Ignazio all the time! He looked at him, reassured him when he was excited, and hugged him a lot. It thrilled me to see it! Their closeness and love for each other is what made the show special, this closeness made them sing so wonderfully, in a special harmony!
I personally will never forget this show!
I just wanted to share my feelings with you …
With great appreciation!
Emily Peretz – Israel
The guys certainly grew into handsome young men and the performance in Verona was absolutely Amazing!
Well, that about sums up what the fans had to say. I’m sorry I couldn’t include all the emails but, I promise I will do this again and “Let the Fans Speak!”
Join me next week as I go back Through the Fields of My Mind and open the door to a new adventure!
If you would like to share a story with me, please email: email@example.com
To read more Il Volo stories visit us at www.ilvoloflightcrw.com