Tag Archives: Michele Torpedine

GOODBYE FOR NOW by SUSAN

We have come to the end of our journey. Over the last three and a half months I have been sharing with you An Extraordinary Adventure as Seen through My Eyes. I hope you enjoyed the stories as much as I enjoyed sharing them with you.

I took the original book which consisted of mostly dialogues and short stories between the boys and changed it to a narrative so you could truly appreciate their stories.

And what extraordinary stories they were. I acted as the narrator and lead you from one story to another always allowing the boys to tell the story in their own words. After a while, the boys took over and carried me along on their journey. A very exciting adventure!

What did I find out about the boys in this book? I found out that Piero is an excellent storyteller. When he tells you a story, he includes every little detail so when the story is over you know everything there is to know about that story. I found out that Ignazio is an excellent writer. He is the only one who wrote his story. Ignazio is very articulate. His words just flow off the page. Because of this, his story was the easiest to edit. As to Gianluca I was surprised to find out he was such a romantic. Everything that is important to him is a passion. He invests himself in what he loves and believes in: Family, Music, Country and Soccer!

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I have read the book about 10 times over the last three months. Going back and forth from Italian to English to be sure that the facts were correct. I have edited other books but this one was truly an adventure. Maybe because the characters meant something to me.

Before I go any further there are some people who I would like to thank for giving me the opportunity to share this story. First and foremost, Piero, Ignazio and Gianluca. They were aware that I was telling their story yet, never once did they ask me to stop telling it. It’s their story and they could have stopped me at any time. Next, I would like to thank Michele Torpedine for also giving me a free hand to share it!

As to the book Il Volo Un’avventura Straordinaria, La nostra storia, (An Extraordinary Adventure, our story) let me say it is a wonderful book and anyone who can read Italian should read it.

Many people have asked me why I don’t translate the book. It’s not my book to translate. All I can say is I would love to translate and edit the book for the English version.

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Before I hand you over for the last time, let me leave you with this thought. This story truly was an extraordinary story about three young boys, child prodigies, who travelled the same path but started in different places: Naro, Bologna and Montepagano. I often think and I have just recently said in one of the stories, how is it possible that three amazing boys, with three extraordinary voices, that complement one another, wound up in the same place, at the same time, in history. My only answer is divine intervention. God had a plan and what a plan it was! He gave us three voices that would stay with us for a long time and certainly for me till the end of my days.

So, before we bid the boys farewell, I’ll let them tell their final story which is about the one disappointment they had. Or as Ignazio put it, “Eurovision… one of those things that I do not like to talk about, but we’re telling the truth, so let’s tell it all.” So, for the last time let’s join Piero as he tells us about what happened at Eurovision….

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Piero: Vienna, the 60th edition of the Eurovision Song Contest, was a rather strange experience because we came as favorites. So, we were loaded, convinced! From February 14th to May 17th , the day we arrived in Vienna, we sang “Grande Amore” so many times that we convinced ourselves even more that we would make it. I mean, Gianluca and I, convinced ourselves while Ignazio was pessimistic as usual. However, Gian, your presentiment this time is really wrong.

Gianluca: But do you know what happened to Eurovision? Unlike Sanremo, the vote of the public was not as important as the Festival: fifty percent vote from home and fifty percent vote of the jury of journalists. And this put us at a disadvantage. But the public had voted for us, we arrived first for the people at home.

I cried when it was over. Why did I cry? I knew we had lost not because people did not love us, but for other reasons. Mom, I cried….

Ignazio: Do we really have to talk about it? I’m not so happy to talk about Eurovision because I do not have a great memory.

Piero: What a blow that night …

Gianluca: I started crying, then I looked at Piero, he too cried …

Piero: Gianluca in the end had convinced me to say: “We win, we win.” We had taken it in Sanremo, it could be that we would take it in Vienna, right?

Gianluca: Look, I guessed, because we won the televoting, I repeat it.

Ignazio: And I always am the pessimistic one, with my feet on the ground, saying, “No, guys, it’s hard. It does not say that we succeed.” Even though I had believed it myself a bit.

But it happened that we got third, behind the Russian Polina Gagarina, second with A Million Voices, and the Swedish Mans Zelmerlow who won with Heroes.

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Gianluca took it very badly, he cried. Piero as well. Everyone took it very bad. What could I say?: “Come on, guys, we got third, not everyone does that, the last one was Modugno.”

Piero: In the end, however, Gianluca and I looked at each other, a look as if to say: “Now what do we do?”, and a moment before we cried and the next moment we laughed. We had lost, what could we do? By now, it had happened.

Gianluca: We could not cry forever. And then, the public’s heart was ours.

Ignazio: Instead, the undersigned, after having done a little shoulder to others, the next morning I felt very bad, but very bad. For two or three days I was very bad, I threw it all out, later.

Piero: In life you cannot always win, that’s what we learned.

Where’s the beauty? Not all women can say yes to you. After that, how do you try to seduce one, if you already know that she will tell you yes?

So, when we came back from Vienna, many people in Italy asked: “Are you sad about the third place?”

Absolutely not, indeed we are very satisfied, but maybe even too satisfied, because our goal of Eurovision was to show us to two hundred and twenty million people. Even in Australia they saw us. But think how many are two hundred and twenty million people? A sea, is, a sea!

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And can I tell you something? I have never loved the tricolor flag so much in my life.

Knowing we were there at the Wiener Stadthalle with the roar of sixteen thousand people to hear us sing live and another two hundred million to see us at home, to know that we at that moment represented Italy for all of Europe is a great responsibility, however it is also a great stimulus to do it in the best possible way.

We represent it around the world with singing, with belcanto, and we believe we have done it better in Vienna. We put it all, we worked hard, we really gave our heart for this occasion.

It was a completely different experience from the others because it was not a competition between artists, it was a competition between Countries, it was a competition between origins, and we were there to defend our nation.

It was really very strong!

It would be nice to come back there, but first we should win another Sanremo Festival!

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Goodbye for Now

In which the true and only secret of the success of our three lives is told.

When they asked us to write this book, our first thought was, “Finally,” finally we can tell the truth.” In a three-minute interview you cannot tell a life, but in a book yes.  And that’s what we tried to do in these pages: tell our true story.

Which is a normal story, of three guys like many who had a great passion and were lucky enough to be able to transform that passion into what today makes them live and makes them famous.

Being successful is beautiful, it would be stupid to say no after we have so dreamed and desired, but you need to quickly understand something, and that is, that it is not only our merit.

The people who follow us have a large part of that merit.

And knowing it is what gratifies us the most.

It is wonderful to know that we have shared our emotions with those who listen to us.

That’s why we work, and that’s why we try to give everything when we sing, we live in a concert or recording studio. And that’s why we do our work always with the maximum of passion, so that we can create what for us is magic, the magic of emotion that passes from our voices to people.

Fans are the reason, the only real explanation of what happened to us from 2009 till today, the records, the tours around the world, the victory at Sanremo, what we are finally living in Italy.

During a concert we would like to embrace all the people before us, one by one, we would like to be able to say: “Thank you!” with our voices to all. And we want to thank them if we are in the studio to record, if we fill the halls in concerts, if we are in the charts, if we go around the world.

Our “fans” are everything!

We do not know what we will decide to do after the new album and the winter tour. We do not know if we will return to Sanremo, if we will take a vacation, if we will immediately start thinking about another album, new songs to fill your emotions and our emotions.

But for sure, for all we have done so far, let’s say thanks to those who have followed us. And we will continue our great adventure together! Goodbye for now!

PIERO, IGNAZIO and GIANLUCA

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Credit to owners of all photos.

WHEN TALENT HAS NO BOUNDARIES by SUSAN

Let me say, Gianluca was the one who inspired me to write this article. Gianluca said, “I thought there were three hundred thousand boys singing like me, and instead that night I discovered that there are only two: Ignazio and Piero.” Of course, Gianluca was referring to the night they sang together for the first time on Ti Lascio Una Canzone.

What Gianluca realized in that moment was the uniqueness of the group. So, let’s begin where it all began….

It is the fourth episode of Ti Lascio Una Canzone and the boys are given the music for “O Sole Mio” but in three parts. They thought it was strange because until then they were singing alone or doing duets.

They walked out on the stage, sang “O Sole Mio” and it was like they had been performing together for years. Flawless!

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We often talk about Ti Lascio Una Canzone where the boys first came together but, we never talked about some of their performances or what was going on behind the scenes without them knowing it.

Let’s talk about some of the people they performed with on the show. Really great names in the Italian music industry. Massimo Ranieri, Fausto Leali, Al Bano, Adamo, Piero Mazzoccheti.

What did I witness during their performances? I saw great performers in awe of three teenagers who were singing their songs and they were amazed at the performances. It was written all over their faces. They could not believe what they were hearing.

What was going on behind the scenes? Well we certainly know that the idea to put the three together was the genius of Roberto Cenci the artistic director and director of the program. But there was so much more happening!

Alone in his apartment, Michele Torpedine was sitting on his sofa with the volume off on his TV. The show he was watching was Ti Lascio Una Canzone. He keeps looking at the screen and he suddenly thinks, Ignazio reminds him of Luciano Pavaroti, Gianluca seemed similar to Jose Carreras and Piero is similar to Placido Domingo. He still had not heard them sing. Out of curiosity, he raised the volume and Michele says, “Here I am aware of another element, that is even more important than the first. The three casually put together to sing a song of the program possess an incredible vocality for their age.”

At this point Michele’s head is spinning. He’s thinking these guys are good and again repeats it to himself, they’re good! He thinks, “What if I try to put them together seriously? A trio he tells himself. Here’s what I could do…. “

Michele says, “The next day I am a volcano. I want to talk to everyone: producers, managers, families.”

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After confronting Tony Renis, Michele called Roberto Cenci and he got the contact details of the three boys.

Michele says, “Another great story started, a new story at a time when it seemed to me that there was no future for me, for my profession: a breath of oxygen in my environment.”

After years of disappointment, loss of trust and gratitude, missing or denied, with Ignazio, Piero and Gianluca, Michele rediscovers the values of gratitude. Michele says, “the boys allowed me to really go back to my job.”

So where to begin? Michele says, “Let’s start with trust because they trust me first of all; the administration of an entire world tour, with important figures to move on which I could take what I want if I were dishonest. But they trusted me and so did their parents, to whom, moreover, I have committed myself to teaching everything, the mechanisms, the things that move, the figures, the relationships. All.”

As I mentioned, Michele called Tony Renis. The first time Tony Renis heard the guys sing he said “I could not believe that these three young kids could sing like men of 45 years old. Their voices were huge! I realized they had great potential.” Renis called his producer friend  Humberto Gatica and said “…if you are available, I would like to collaborate with you to produce these kids.” When Gatica heard them sing, he couldn’t believe their voices either, he thought it was a fake, “they can’t possibly be teenagers.” Renis said, “After this these kids started to fly, so we called them Il Volo.” Renis believed these kids would appeal to kids, mothers, fathers, everybody. He was right!

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They were the first Italian artists in history to sign a contract with a major American music label. Universal Music signed them immediately. Michele said, “it is important to give due recognition to the man who made all this possible, the great record manager Peter Lopez. Peter immediately sensed the enormous potential of our artistic project. To him we owe an incredible international contract signed simply trusting that the boys would have audiences all over the world.”

But what did they bring to the table to win over the kids, the parents, and the grandparents? They had an idea and it worked.

Their music was Operatic pop or Pop-Opera. What was this new movement? It’s singing Opera in a more modern style. While opera is very strict and regimented, Pop-Opera is more ethereal it has a lighter feeling and it moves freely. It takes away the hard edges of opera and replaces it with a more ethereal feel while still presenting the drama and the high notes of the opera.

This along with the classical Neapolitan songs became a big draw. Why did it work? One reason is three amazing voices! If the voice wasn’t there, the song wasn’t going to sell.

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When I’m writing these pieces, I do a lot of research and I watch a lot of videos. And this is what I found. I looked at videos of the promos the boys did, for their albums. They were 16 – 17 years old and I found many teenagers at these promos. I saw teenage girls and boys singing opera and Italian songs. They liked it because the music is easy and catchy and, they picked it up very easily. And I might add, the guys are very attractive and likeable. The young girls love them not because they are very handsome but because they can relate to them. They were 16 – 17 years old and they were telling these young kids we love this music and you can too. And they did and still do! Once the kids were sold the parents followed.

Who wouldn’t want their kids singing this music? In turn the parents found it just as pleasing. As to the grandmothers they were the ones who were fainting over these attractive young men.

But it wasn’t all as easy as that. There were some rough edges, some adjustments that needed to be made. The voices were certainly there but bringing it all together was another matter.

Let’s look back a moment at some of the people I just spoke about. Michele Torpedine, Roberto Cenci, Tony Renis, Humberto Gatica and Peter Lopez. These are the top of the top. Under normal circumstances these boys wouldn’t be able to get in the front door, no less to meet these people. What would you call it? I call it La forza del destino (The Force of Destiny). They certainly were in the right place at the right time. I often wonder how it is possible that these three boys, with three unique voices, all appear at the same time and in the same place in history. WOW! What a plan God had! It can be nothing less!

So, what happened next? So, let’s let the boys tell you….

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Piero said, On June 9 th, 2009, nine days after the end of Ti Lascio Una Canzone, my parents left for Rome. They were a bit mysterious about it. When I asked them what they were going to do in Rome, they only replied that they had to meet a person and, I tell the truth, I did not even insist on knowing who…. The next day they come home and then, yes, I wanted to know something more. “Dad, what have you done in Rome?”

“Nothing,” he answers, “we met a certain Torpedine.”

Yes, On June 9th, 2009 all the parents met with Michele to discuss the future of the boys.

Piero said, “After a month, my parents made another trip to Rome to meet the legendary Torpedine …. The day after, Mom and Dad came back to Naro with a check. It was the advance of the contract.”

Ignazio said, “Immediately after the end of the program my parents, like those of Piero and Gianluca received a call from the office of Bibi Ballandi.”

Who is Bibi Ballandi? …. He is the producer with a capital P. Some examples? The shows on Rai Uno de Fiorello and Celentano, Dancing with the Stars and also  Ti Lascio una Canzone.

From Ballandi’s office, they wanted the parents of the three boys to go to Rome to discuss their children’s future…. On their return from Rome, as usual, Mom and Dad sat down with me and my sister around the table to talk about what had happened in Rome. Michele Torpedine ….  was interested in us. What did I think? What could I think, one who in the last five years had done nothing but sing from morning to night? After several meetings we signed our first managerial contract.”

Gianluca said, “That is a period that I really cannot remember in general. I was just a child who dreamed. While the other guys who had participated in the Ti Lascio Una Canzone returned home … the three of us walked towards a professional artistic career.

…. I did not even know what the contracts were like, I did not care. Once I told my father something like this: ‘But why, to be a singer, it takes a contract?’ I only remember that at a certain point we went to lunch in Rome, at Rome Cavalieri with Tony Renis to talk about music and recording songs. The contract had already been signed. I was there with my father, Piero, Ignazio and their parents.

What I do remember is, we were three funny and awkward children: Ignazio fat, Piero roly-poly too, I was small and plump and with pimples. So, at the first meeting, I look at Torpedine and ask him: “But what came into your mind?”

 

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In 2009 they recorded their first album.

Ron Fair, chairman of Geffens Records had this to say about their debut album, “Their debut album went Platinum, in Italy, without a single release, solely based on their performances in three TV Shows. This has never happened before.”

Today, Michele sums it up like this. “These three guys have very clear ideas and I have never seen them impressed in front of audiences that many would shake their legs. I never heard a wrong attack, and if some inconsistency arose that made something happen professionally, they knew how to handle the problem at the origin. They are always extraordinary, their voices grow with them, they mature in body and soul. There is no other team or artistic team so complete.”

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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.

JO’S DREAM by Daniela

Today I want to talk to you about a little girl named JO.

She is a beautiful little girl, who stole the hearts of Piero, Ignazio and Gianluca, and in particular the heart of Michele Torpedine.

Perhaps many of you will already know her story, but here, on this site, we only talked about it when Il Volo made an appeal for her.

It was July 31, 2019 and this appeal was published on the official Il Volo page, which we also published here on the Flight Crew blog.

The boys said they learned about this little girl who was going to have an operation in America and they appealed to people’s good hearts for a fundraiser for her.

We are talking about Jo, a 3 year old girl, born in Tuscany, with different skeletal malformations, the most serious is the lack of tibias in her legs, a very rare case, not operable in Italy, where she would have been forced to amputate the limbs.

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In Florida, at the Paley Institute, Dr. Paley can solve his problem with various operations and physiotherapy, but it takes 500 thousand euros, in addition  travel, accommodation, maintenance and car for all months in America.

Jo, is supported by two parents who love her so much, but who don’t have the opportunity to face all those expenses.

For Jo, many artists and many ordinary people made donations , and in this way have allowed Jo’s dream to come true.

Michele Torpedine, took the story of this little girl very much to heart, and in February, while the boys were already on tour in America, he attended an event in Pisa in favor of Jo.

Here is the video of that event.

Michele says he is there for a much more important reason than what his job usually is, he suddenly fell in love with this wonderful little girl.

When he and the boys saw the pictures of this little girl, they were overwhelmed and therefore they will follow her in all her effort, with the hope of seeing her soon run with them. 

Look at how much tenderness these images:

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Michele writes of her that Jo is their other GRANDE AMORE and also that “It is inexplicable that this little girl must also suffer, but we must think about the ending … when we will see her run together with all the other children!”    

The journalist Antonella Pera wrote thus:
“Thanks also to the friendship that binds me to Michele, whom I have known for 20 years, we were able to organize this important meeting with Jo and I asked him and the boys from Il Volo to make an appeal. What can I say? Since when I contacted them onwards the donations have exploded. The three boys participated in the evening in connection on the other side of the world, during their tour in the United States. But the compliments, she concludes, also go to Jo’s parents, for all that what they are doing and because despite everything they have been able to make her a serene and joyful child.”

Finally the day of the departure for Miami arrives and Torpedine writes on his Facebook page.

“Let’s start for the big business! Good luck, little Jo!”

“Me and the boys are happy that little Jo will finally have the opportunity to go to America and we are confident that she can make her dream come true. At the same time, I’m sorry that many other children do not have his same luck … who knows how many there are! And a thought goes to them too.”

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Easter holidays come and Torpedine sends his best wishes to Jo:

“A special wish for a happy Easter to little Jo who is on the other side of the ocean … hoping to see her again soon and with me the best wishes from Il Volo, Dave Monaco and Nico Arezzo!

On March 18 the first operation.
Jo’s mom Irene wrote this on her Facebook page:

“Dear Jo …
20 minutes ago, you fell asleep and your operation began.
It is the toughest test in the world. I’m scared. Rationally, however, I know that I have done 10,000 km and a lot of uphill road with all of you to bring it here.
Jo was calm, she never cried. The professionalism of a child-friendly institution can be seen.
We keep you updated,
Mum Irene”

…..and then:

“Hi everyone, Dr. Paley just came out of the operating room. Jo is fine. She hasn’t come out yet, some procedures have to end. Paley has operated on one leg for the time being. The right leg is only postponed in three weeks.

When you see a doctor come to you with eyes that laugh and shine, despite six and a half hours of work and saying to you:
THE LEFT LEG, IS PERFECT. THE KNEE BENDS 100 PERCENT.
Dear Dr. Paley, thank you. Thanks for how much you love your job. Thanks for those eyes that have looked into mine.”

Jos Dream 06

Physiotherapies are very hard for Jo.

Jos Dream 07

During an interview Torpedine talks about Jo, and from Miami, mom Irene, thanks him by writing thus:
“Thanks to Michele for the words and especially his and IL VOLO’s deeds that never fail. Thanks for being so sincere and familiar in our daily lives.”

The day of the second operation also arrives.

The surgery went well, the road is long, it will take a lot of patience and a lot of physiotherapy, but Jo will be able to walk.

Mum Irene wrote: 

“As soon as Jo perceived that she had the other guardian (the brace/apparatus used to support the leg) after awakening from anesthesia, she said to me:

-Mom, is this a tutor? (brace)
Yes love, like the other foot.
-Yes. (Silence) mom. Are my legs like everyone’s now?
Yes my love. Indeed stronger!
-Mom. (Silence) but now can I walk with two feet on the ground?”

Jos Dream 08

Jos Dream 09

The happiness of IL Volo and Torpedine, who published this article on the official Facebook page, is accompanied by these words:

“We are happy to have contributed together with our manager Michele Torpedine and other colleagues from the world of entertainment to this enormous success: little Jo will walk again!”

Jos Dream 10

I would say that it is a story that started very badly, but that it will have a very nice ending. Jo will be able to walk.

Of course there will still be moments of tension and a lot of work and pain, but the road is now downhill.

What about Torpedine and Il Volo? One word, fantastic. You are unique people!

Good luck Jo, we love you !!

Daniela

Jos Dream 11

Credit to owners of all photos and videos.

QUESTION & ANSWER with TORPEDINE by Daniela

Among the many live shows of these days, I saw this video made by the QUESTION & ANSWER program, conducted by Serena and Alessandro asking Michele Torpedine questions of all kinds. I found the answers very interesting and that help us to better understand the manager of our guys.

Enjoy the reading!

S = Guys, Michele Torpedine, manager of Il Volo and author of the book, RICOMINCIO DAI TRE will soon be with us. (she shows the book).

He is a great character in the world of music, he has launched many famous singers and it is an honor to have him here.

(After 10 minutes, Michele connects)

MT = Hi everyone, so what are we talking about today? What should I expect from you Serena? Should I call the lawyer?? (laughs)
But do I have to answer all the questions?

S = Yes, to all questions, and you cannot ask us questions.
Alessandro asked me if I am a little afraid of you, and I am a little afraid of you, because I have read your book and you say you do not have a nice character.

MT = I have a bad temper with those who deserve it, otherwise I am very sweet.
I become grumpy and unpleasant with those who deserve it, but with people who do well I  don’t.

A = Can we also mention names in the questions, or not?

MT = The names yes.

S = My first question is this: is there anything about you that cannot be joked about at all?
(the connection with Michele disappears and when it reappears there is no audio, therefore Michele is asked to exit and return from the live. Michele re-enters, everything is ok.)

MT = No, apart from the physical aspect and the problems of sex, everything can be said about me.

S = But I have all questions about Michele sex!!

MT = I’ll try to answer you.

S = Alessandro ask yourself, the first questions.

Torpedine 01

A = Which is the artist with whom you have had working relationships, who has been the most underrated?

MT = From me or from the audience?

A = The one who didn’t get what he deserved.

MT = There is one in particular, which I brought to Sanremo years ago, his name was Roberto Amadè, he is a great songwriter. We reached the final in Sanremo, but then, the discography and the television viewing did not appreciate him for what he deserved. He is very strong.

A = Because of him or not?

MT = Because the “connoisseurs” did not consider him suitable. You know, you always see the image of those who are doing well (means those who are welcome), of the others not, and with him there was nothing to do, unfortunately, because he was very strong, and he still is because he writes yet . Sometimes there are unexplained things behind success.

A = Instead, what was your most overrated artist? If you can tell….

MT = None of my artists. Just read their names that you understand that they are really good: Gino Paoli, Zucchero, Giorgia, Pino Daniele, Bocelli, Il Volo ….. with these names, you cannot say that they have been overrated, I clearly speak of my artists.
There are many other useless artists, there are names in rap, in trap, in these genres here, which is no longer music, but something else.

Also in women’s discography, there are many voices that are all the same, once there were singers who each had their own musical genre, and a great personality. Today on radio, you can hardly distinguish one from the other species in young people.

Torpedine 02

S = Mine are a little more particular questions, listen carefully to this question.
“Who would manage Il Volo when you retire?”

MT = (he makes a superstitious gesture) …. who will take Il Volo ?? The same happened with Bocelli, after 16 years, his wife and relatives continued the journey and they do it well.

The problem is not to continue, the problem is the initial phase, when they are unknown, it takes the person who senses their talent, afterwards, when the thing has exploded, it is not difficult to manage, as long as you continue on the things already done before.

S = But you think that when you retire, Il Volo will divide, or will always remain: Il Volo?

MT = No, they are too intelligent to divide. I always say that the beautiful part of Il Volo has yet to come, they are still young, they still call them “tenorini”, because they still do not have an age to be considered credible, but vocally, with what they learn on stage, at 28 / 29 years will be great stars, because they sing really well and it will always be better.

A = What artist would you have wanted to manage, which you have not managed?

MT = In Italy I was lucky enough to work with many great artists, I would have liked to have more Pino Daniele, it was the most beautiful production that ever existed on the Italian market. If you talk to me about the international market, that’s another matter.

Pino was the best, his concerts were really all live, he had few recorded sequences.

Torpedine 03

S = Of all the artists you have had, humanly, who is the biggest asshole?

MT = Who has read the book and who follows all my controversies in recent years knows it, is only the artist Zucchero.
The others behaved well, I have nothing to say to Bocelli, to Giorgia, we had a working relationship and then it ended, but I could not say anything about it.

I have been with Il Volo for 11 years, in short, the only one who humanly disappointed me is only Zucchero, luckily like him, there are not many of them, this is an environment where someone still thanks you.

S = In your book you say that no artist has ever thanked you.

MT = It is the vice of the environment, but not everyone is like that, as always, there are intelligent people and others who instead have no sensitivity, or have no memory, because they are greedy of fame.

S = Do you have to say thanks to someone?

MT = Yes. You must know that in the beginning, when I played (he was drummer) I needed money, the whole family was poor, indeed very poor, and when I started playing, my father beat me, because playing, especially in the south, it was not considered a real job, it was wasting time and I had to go to work at 12/13 years of age, otherwise there was no money to eat.

Fortunately then, I started playing for Orietta Berti (Italian singer), and I started to bring home some money. She was the first to trust me, I did a little bit of everything with her and she said that I could be a manager.

Then I went to work for Gino Paoli (Italian singer) and he told me if, in addition to playing, I wanted to take care of him, and with these two characters my life changed.

From a life of total misery, I went to a good time.

(Michele receives a call and the connection jumps, then he reconnects.)

Torpedine 04

A = In fact I thought that, with Gino Paoli, first you only played and then instead you became his manager.

MT = Yes, in fact, I suggested to Gino to take a tour with Vanoni (Italian female singer), at the beginning they didn’t want because there was a love story between them, then they accepted and it was a great success, a very successful tour, and we made a lot of money and my life changed.

A = I personally met Lucio Dalla (author of Caruso) and I think he was one of the few who remained the same, despite the notoriety.

MT = Yes, it’s true, moreover he lived in Bologna like me, and we met often, because we were friends, but also because he lived the city, he didn’t live a retreat, where nobody could meet him, often you met him in the shops, in bars.

S = If you met fifteen year old Michele Torpedine, what would you say to him?

MT = It is a question that many ask me, but, despite those were the most terrifying years for me, because I only took the beating, we ate little and lived five in a room, but it is the period that I remember, as more absolutely beautiful, so I would tell myself to do the same things again, even if I suffered. 

Everything I do, I think back to that first period and for me it is a great victory.

Yesterday on RAI1 the recording of the 2015 IL VOLO concert was broadcast and the boys made high audience, they won the audience of the evening, and for me, this is as if I were doing it for the first time.

S = What you are proud of, but you would never put on your resume.

MT = It is difficult to answer because I am proud of everything I have done and for now everything has gone very well, so there is nothing that I would eliminate.

A = I would like to ask you a question relating to live concerts.
Is there a concert you would like to do in an important location, and with whom?
I remember that with Zucchero you did the concert in the Kremlin.

MT= With Il Volo, next year we will do something for the first time in Piazza S. Pietro (Vaticano).

I was the first to do a concert in the Kremlin with Zucchero, then with Bocelli I did the concert under the Eiffel Tower and the concert in front of the  Twin Towers, and I made the proposal for the Bocelli concert at the Colosseum, then he and I parted, but he did that concert, and the idea was mine.

I could think of a concert on the Chinese Wall, or on the Moon ….. with Il Volo I made Pompeii.

Torpedine 05

A = If you hadn’t become a manager, what would you have done?

MT = I would have continued to play the drums, also because it is the only thing I can do.

I also wrote it in the book, they made us work as children, I practically didn’t see school, so today I would be doing concerts on some cruise ship or in some place, but anyway with that job, I would always have to eat.

S = Once the girls used to say “Come and see my collection of butterflies.” (like a phrase to attract the girls in the house), now what collection would you show?

MT = Unfortunately or fortunately, depending on the case, I am part of an industry, where girls do not need many incentives for certain moments, however it would be sad to think of using those means, when there are serious people who hopefully have other topics to show.

S = Now Michele I have some stupid questions. Nothing is known of your private life, we want to know if you are married, engaged, divorced …. we want to know your facts. Always ask you about the guys from Il Volo, but tell us about yourself. Did you ever say I LOVE YOU?

MT = Very few times.

(Michele reads a message)

A message from the president of Sony has arrived at this moment: “The boys don’t miss a beat.” 

(certainly referring to the consensus of audience that had the concert on RAI1)

Everyone has his point of view with women, I am now elderly and still single, unfortunately I have a negative attitude with women, I have little confidence in them, perhaps because most women in our environment are very “easy”, there are many temptations, and they are unable to be faithful, and I do not respect this type of woman and I am afraid to put such a woman in my house, in fact I was single. I am a southern man and would be very disappointed if my woman cheated on me, I am also jealous, and when I am on tour around the world, I cannot control the situation at home.

Torpedine 06

S = But don’t you miss something in your life?

MT = It is clear, I miss a woman and a son, especially a son.
I miss going home in the evening and finding the family waiting for you.

But I have too many examples near me of unfortunate friends who have not found the right woman or have had divorces and I think it could happen to me too, so I avoid. I have my adventures and then it ends.

S = You like being the sex symbol.

MT = Maybe!! I am a sex symbol for those women who want to start singing or dancing in our environment, but if I were a delivery boy, it would be much harder for me.

 A = How do you see the situation of the concerts, in this moment of virus?

MT = I see it badly, unfortunately, but it is the same for everyone. Luckily in America we only lost 3 concerts, now in August we will have two dates at the Arena and Taormina then Milan, but we will certainly move them to spring 2021. By now this year it will be difficult to do something live.

S = I keep asking you silly questions. Do you watch porn movies?

MT = No, I don’t watch them because they bore me, in the end they are all the same. Look, I always tell the truth and I have to tell you that I have been to Cuba four times and I have never taken advantage of situations, I saw the colleagues who were with me going back and forth from the hotel, I never did it because I didn’t I like to take advantage of this, it’s horrible.

S = How important is sex in a relationship?

MT = A lot and being able to have a person by your side, that involves you is very important.

Final chat and goodbyes!!

Torpedine 07

I enjoyed reading about Michele and I think he really gets “naked” in the interviews.

He has really had very difficult years and surely regrets not having his own child. Maybe that’s why he always said that he considers Ignazio, Gianluca and Piero as his children!!

Did you like the interview?

Daniela

Credit to owners of all photos and video.