A post published by Maura Pucci made me remember this beautiful feat, made by four very tough women.
Unusual and … amazing aspects of Il Volo’s popularity.
THE NEW SANCTUARIES
We are in 2015.
Four American ladies, from different States, who met on social networks, animated by a great passion for IL VOLO and enthusiastic about the recent victory of the beloved group in Sanremo, decide to join together to undertake a trip to Italy.
Some new Il Volo fans might think: It’s not new! At their concerts in Verona and Taormina there are many fans from abroad and in particular Americans.
Today the Arena of Verona and the ancient theater of Taormina are places of great appeal for the fans of Il Volo from all over the world, who arrive there in droves, both to attend a concert in scenarios such as only Italy can offer, and to meet the virtual friends, frequented on Facebook.
But in the spring of 2015 things were still not exactly like that. And the four ladies embark on an Atlantic flight, for the ONLY purpose of visiting the places of residence of Piero, Ignazio and Gianluca, with the same spirit with which the romantic young people of Northern Europe, three or four centuries ago, left for the Grand Tour at vault of Italy, to be satisfied with beauty and culture, but at the same time with the same religiosity of those who want to embark on the journey of Santiago de Compostela.
Because, let’s face it, when it comes to doing this, it means that the three characters have already risen to the glory of the altars and that their places of life have become three new Sanctuaries, pilgrimage destinations …
Montepagano, Marsala and Naro, three small towns in the Italian province have become places of international resonance.
Okay, I just wanted to joke around.
But there are still many fans, especially Italian, but also foreigners, who go, or dream of going to Montepagano, favored by its proximity to Rome. And some of them even went as far as Naro.
Unfortunately, after five years, the sanctuary of Marsala today is not very frequent because S. Ignazio moved to Bologna.😂😂
When I read the news of this trip in 2015, I fully understood the attractive power of these extraordinary and unique guys.
That trip, was undertaken by Deborah Georgini Beaupre, Joan Brenin, Madeline Vitella and Maria Lagostini Leps.
In Italy, it was an event, it had never been heard that fans came to get to know the countries of their favorites. Also Sanremo had just ended with the victory and therefore, the local newspapers talked about this trip, here are the articles.
FROM AMERICA TO ROSETO, TO SEE THE PLACES OF GIANLUCA GINOBLE
(I translate for you.)
Saturday, May 16, 2015
“I crossed the Atlantic Ocean to see you” is film stuff. Indeed, no?
Because four American ladies have been stronger than exaggerated idioms, making something that even in the best dreams come true: they came from theUnited States of America to Roseto just to see the places whereGianluca Ginoble, a member of Il Volo, grew up, then headed straight to Sicily and do the same in the native places ofPiero Barone andIgnazio Boschetto.
The super fans are Maria Agostini Leps from Pennsylvania, Joan Brenin from Florida, Madeline Vitella from New Jersey and Deborah Georgini Beaupre from Texas, who say: “We met on Facebook in 2014, thanks to an article written by Maria after a concert by Il Volo. Having the same passion, we decided to meet and organize this trip to Italy, to see the places of our three darlings. It was enough for us to have the photo all together with the sign of the name of the three cities, but today a dream has come true.”
The dream was to meet Gianluca Ginoble and it became reality again thanks to Facebook, given that Maria wrote to Ercole, the father of the singer, saying of their presence in Roseto.
And since fate sometimes puts a good word on it, chance has meant that Gianluca was in Roseto in these days, before leaving again for the artistic and promotional commitments of Il Volo.
So, at five in the evening, on the Roseto seafront, the meeting of a thousand hugs and smiles, with selfies, dedications on records and photos.
Deborah shows a photo of the license plate of her car in Texas: “IL VOLO”, saying that after the death of her husband the songs of the group gave her strength.
Maria confesses that she returned to Italy after 50 years (she left at 9) for this. All four have seen many Il Volo concerts and love the three singers.
Gianluca Ginoble says: “It is such a great thing that I can only thank these splendid ladies, because in the face of such demonstrations of affection there is the risk of getting your head up.” (feeling overly important)
FROM AMERICA TO MARSALA, IN THE LAND OF IGNAZIO BOSCHETTO
They came from the USA to make their dream come true: to visit the places where the members of Il Volo, were born and raised.
In Marsala, in the city of Ignazio Boschetto, the first stop of the four American ladies was the visit to the representative office of the municipal administration which appointed the singer Ignazio “ambassador of Marsala in the world”.
The American ladies will leave tomorrow for Naro, the birthplace of Piero Barone; while in recent days they had already visited Roseto degli Abruzzi, the land of Gianluca Ginoble.
He, Piero and ours Ignazio, meanwhile, are already in Austria to participate in the Eurovision Song Contest in Vienna, where Il Volo is finalist by right with the winning song of Sanremo “Grande Amore”.
FROM AMERICA TO NARO, ON THE TRAIL OF PIERO BARONE FROM IL VOLO
The last stop on the Italian – Sicilian journey was Naro, the city of Piero Barone. Here too the reception of the girls from “Il Volo Naro Fan Club” was warm.
In the town hall the solemn ceremony with the mayor Lillo Cremona, the vice-mayor Lidia Mirabile and the mother of Piero, Eleonora Ognibene. Then a tour to discover the baroque of Naro and its monuments: the Castle, the old C athedral.
The Sicilian tour will end with a visit to the city of Agrigento and then to Taormina. Then the return to Rome for the US.
Admirable. They were the first, but then many others came.
I don’t think I would have had their courage, but I’m happy that they got what they wanted.
I bet that many of us would like to make this nice trip, and maybe be so lucky to be able to meet Piero, Ignazio and Gianluca ……… but sometimes dreams come true!
Lately we have seen several photos with Piero, Ignazio and Gianluca in the famous Italian micro car the beautiful FIAT 500.
But let’s do a little history.
In July 1957 the FIAT(Italian Automobile Factory Turin) presented the 500, a very small utility vehicle with a two-cylinder engine and a maximum speed of 85 kilometers per hour.
The new car featured rounded lines, a 479 cc engine with 13 horsepower, a length of 2.97 meters, a sunroof in waterproof fabric, two front seats and a small bench behind. The price was 490,000 lire equal to approximately 13 salaries of an Italian worker of those times.
Over 4 million specimens were sold. It was the first car for hundreds of thousands of motorists. Of course, there was no shortage of special and sporty versions.
The production of this car ended in 1975.
At that time, the 500 car, for the Italians, represented having reached full autonomy, it was the dream after the house.
For this reason, even today, it is completely “venerated”, looked at with respect, remembered with affection by everyone, very small, but of great value, so much so that in recent years a larger version has come out that respects its forms .
These are the reasons why the 500 it is often used in images, because however it was a “status symbol” that made the history of Italy.
And here is why it is a pride to take a photo with the 500, because it expresses the “made in Italy”, as well as IL VOLO……. two Italian prides.
This is the reason why Piero, to sponsor the tour of his beautiful NARO, has chosen to be immortalized aboard a 500, which is also very suitable for traveling the narrow streets of Naro.
And here, Piero and his friend Dario, in front of Chiaramonte Castle of Naro, wants everyone to return to beautiful Sicily soon.
Reposted from @soulsicilytravel – After this sad period, we can restart visiting our lovely Sicily. We hope to see you soon!! ❤️ ☀️
Here’s Piero driving the 500.
It is really a very small car, at that time it seemed completely normal, but to look at it now it is really very, very small.
Instead in this advertising spot, IL VOLO presents the new version of the 500. The shapes are the same, but certainly wider.
This was a commercial made to sensitize young people, so that they do not drive with the stereo at high volume (as often happens), because it could divert attention. To demonstrate this Ignazio, Piero and Gianluca take turns in the parking lots, with the other two singing loudly and the results are evident !!
To hear the unmuted version of this video, please –Click Here
Piero exults! The parking lot race is won by him!
I = (towards Gian who is disappointed) But why, did you think you had won?
G = No …… but …..
I = To you, the car has turned off 500 times.
G = But why are you going against me, celebrate for him (Piero)
I = Why he (Piero) is to be ignored!
P = I greet the small car (and he kisses the car). Thanks Mom.
I = And anyway there’s something rigged here, and it’s not good (he jokes because he wanted to win the race).
G = I am the best!
Even at the announcement of the concerts for the ten-year career, Il Volo made a video with the 500.
Gianluca says: “For us it is a year of great celebrations, we are celebrating our 10 year career. We try to bear the name of Italy, with our music and our voices, as does the 500, it bears the name of the Italy in the world.”
I want to finish this post with a really funny video that gives a very important message and of course, it was made with the use of the little 500.
I will summarize the meaning.
We are in a Sicilian country, immediately after the end of the Covid pandemic.
Finally you can go out of the home, with the protections (masks). But resuming the normal course of life is not easy, (here represented by the car that cannot start), there is difficulty, people have not worked, there is no money.
So the sense is that if we all give help (people who help push the car), with difficulty, but the road (even that of life) is traveled.
In addition, the video enhances the beauty of the Sicilian land and what it offers, the song says to help and buy Sicilian products …. “instead of emigrating, we hoe our wheat, because the bread is bitter, if it is not Sicilian” ….. bitter bread is understood that if you are abroad you eat bitter bread, because you think of your distant land.
Really nice video and with a very important message, in which the 500 car did its important part !!
One last thought.
When I met my husband, he had a Fiat 500 car. Good memories …. many years ago !!
In these days of quarantine, there are live videos, between our boys and their friends.
This is Piero with Jovanotti. I state that Jovanotti, (also called Jova, but his real name is Lorenzo Cherubini) is a famous Italian singer-songwriter, rapper and disc jockey.
The live is very interesting and therefore I translate roughly for you.
Friendly greetings between Piero and Jovanotti.
Piero says that he returned three days earlier from the US where Il Volo was on tour, but they did not realize from there what the situation was like in Italy.
He is now in Naro, and is in quarantine. He says that quarantine stimulates creativity, he must commit the days, the mind, he takes advantage of it to study, and read.
Jova asks where the other two are and Piero replies that everyone is at home, Gianluca is in Abruzzo and Ignazio in Bologna.
Jova asks if there is someone at home with him and Piero replies that he is alone, that he has not yet seen his parents and his sister. Piero says that in America they didn’t have the feeling of what was going on, that if you put on gloves and a medical mask, maybe you looked badly.
Now also in the US the situation is different.
Now everyone looks to Italy, also as an example and then we receive many messages from all over the world of solidarity and we must be proud of this. Jova asks if they were on tour and Piero replies that they were on tour since January and they have had to cancel the last three concerts.
Piero explains how fortunately they managed to return to Italy, because he says that after Trump’s speech where he said he would close all flights from Europe, and for Europe, Alitalia, sent a completely empty plane to the US to take the compatriots who wanted to return to Italy.
Jovanotti says that Italians always show the best side when there are emergencies. He says it is in these cases that Italy proves to be a united country.
He says his daughter was also in the US for study and managed to catch one of the last flights.
Then he asks Piero if he is afraid.
Piero replies no, because he is convinced that we live in the safest country in the world, even if he admits that in Sicily, the health facilities (hospitals) are not exactly vanguard, but there are many people of good will. Therefore, by contacting some friends from Agrigento, they thought that, for now there are few cases in Sicily, but if the contagion were to come as strong as in Lombardy, the health facilities would collapse immediately.
And so he and these artists from Agrigento decided to start this fundraiser to help these hospitals. They will channel the donations to this bank account, but they will not give the money, but they will ask what the hospital needs and will buy it and give it to them. All coordinated with local authorities.
Piero says that the duty of the artists is to spread this initiative and says that today there are no records sold or concerts. Today there is only one concert, that of staying united and carrying out this great battle.
Jova greatly appreciates Piero’s speech and tells him that he is “great”. He remembers that they met quickly in a waiting room of the Catania airport and exchanged their contacts.
Then Jovanotti (who has many followers) invites everyone to follow this beautiful initiative, very important.
Then he tells Piero that he wants to hear his voice, he says that he knows that Il Volo sings all over the world bringing the Italian melody, especially the songs in Italian, and says that they are a rarity.
Piero replies that it’s nice to see Americans, even the Japanese, who get excited even if they don’t understand the words.
At this point Jovanotti asks Piero to perform the NESSUN DORMA.
Piero says that his neighbors will be tired of hearing him, as long as he always sings. Jova says they told him that the summer rental agencies have requests to rent apartments near Piero’s !!
So Piero shows the view from his balcony and Jova says it is a beautiful place, a real historical center.
Then he tells Piero that he appreciates Il Volo, because they also love to joke and play down their image, also lending themselves to slightly different interviews, such as the one they did with Fiorello, proposing Il Volo in a rock version.
Piero confirms that they try to bring the message of bel canto to the younger generation too.
Jova asks if they have ever sung in China and Piero confirms yes, in 2015, the year of the dog. Then they do a search and discover that when Piero was born, it was the year of the rooster, then they try, laughing, to make a symphonic version of Jova’s song.
A message from Fiorello arrives (on their video) and recalls a Sicilian song and immediately Piero sings a piece of it. Jova is not Sicilian and does not understand the meaning, so he asks Piero who tells him to ask Fiorello. (It has a mischievous meaning, that’s why Piero replies like this.)
There is also a message from Ignazio saying that they have abandoned him. Jova says no and asks where Ignazio is, Piero replies that he is in Bologna and that due to the jet lag he cannot sleep
So they talk about the importance of sleep to have a rested and fresh voice before the concerts, and Piero also recommends eating apples, and also cold water.
Jovanotti asks Piero if he ever met Pavarotti and Piero says that he missed by two years before their start as Il Volo.
(In this 2013 video there are Pavarotti and Jovanotti in a song by Jova, during “Pavarotti and friends.”)
So they talk about the performances on people’s balconies, these days, and confirm that it is the most beautiful thing, that those videos have gone around the world and that everyone imitates us for this, because it is the most beautiful thing in the world.
Piero tells Jova, that his dad, when he had the auto bodywork shop, put him on the hood of customers’ cars and had him sing UN AMORE COSÌ GRANDE and GRANADA.
Jova says that he is almost 54 years old, Piero’s dad, Gaetano, is only two years older.
Piero says that La Boheme is his favorite opera and Jova says he saw it a year ago at the Metropolitan.
Then Piero sings a piece of the Cavalleria Rusticana.
Piero confirms that he is studying to do an opera, but it takes months and months of study and tries to do lessons via skype with his teacher from Bologna.
Jovanotti tells him that when he debuts at the opera, he wants to be there, then asks if Gaetano wanted to be a singer, and Piero says no, but his grandfather was sincerely sought for singing and says that he and his grandfather have the same voice and he tells how his grandfather noticed his potential.
So Piero tells of the economic difficulties that his father has suffered, in order to take him to various competitions or singing lessons, and Jovanotti says they seem like stories from centuries ago, instead they are recent and very beautiful stories and Piero says that Ignazio and Gianluca also have similar stories.
Jovanotti concludes that now that everyone has time, they must use it to rediscover many things that are not done during busy days.
Then they say goodbye with affection.
Piero has also made specific messages to persuade people to collaborate to raise funds for hospitals in Sicily in the Agrigento area.
As you all know, Piero, Ignazio and Gianluca quickly returned to Italy. But maybe not everyone, especially those who don’t have Facebook, knows where the guys are now.
The three, are scattered around Italy, one in the north, one in the center and one in the south.
Let’s start with Piero.
As we read from his words, Piero returned to Sicily, to his Naro, but did not return to the family. To preserve his health and the health of his loved ones, Piero has self-isolated himself in his apartment (which is close to that of his parents), and has no physical contact with them. He has self-declared (as is expected here) and is observing a quarantine, isolated from all.
Piero made a video call with his friend Mariano Di Vaio, whom the boys had met in Miami.
Here it is and I will roughly translate it for you.
First thing, we all notice, Piero’s new beard cut …… I don’t like it !!!😑
Mariano also makes fun of Piero for doing this new shave and leaving his mustache like this, and laughing. Piero said he did it alone (of course). He was inspired by the Narcos telefilm, where there is a sheriff, and was inspired by him.
Piero says he’s been in quarantine for two days and already doesn’t know what to do. Mariano says he’s been four days and it feels like a month (he also has a wife and 3 children).
Piero shows that he also tried to cut his hair, with the result that he almost peeled one side. (disaster)
He says he saw a video of a fairly well-known singer in Miami, who was in the disco without worries. 😲
(Thank you Judy Thurman for this nice collage!)
Di Vaio, confirming that he spoke with friends in Miami when the alarm went up, but people still do not realize the big problem of C19.
To pass the time, Piero watches TV, then has tools to train with, takes virtual lessons with his personal trainer.
Piero says that he would have liked to stay at home with his parents and sister, however, he is alone and the policemen come every day to check that he is at home, in isolation, because having been away, he does not know if he may have contracted the virus, and therefore, rightly so.
But Piero, what did you do, right now that hair was starting to grow back!!
Climbing up, from the boot, we arrive in central Italy, Montepagano ….. Gianluca.
Gianluca was traveling, accompanied by his mother Eleonora. They returned home, but not to their parents’ house, but to Gianluca’s house, to be isolated from Ercole and Ernesto. Gianluca lives close to his parents, but they still couldn’t hug each other. They too are in isolation.
Gianluca provides us with many moments of his day and his beautiful home.
In this video, Gianluca says that in quarantine they are all becoming incredible chefs. He too, who has never cooked in his life, made an amazing banana dessert.
Then Gian also practices playing the piano.
Bravo Gianluca !!
And he trains in his small gym. Do not overdo it!
Instead, mother Eleonora sends us this photo of Ernesto beyond the railing of the window. On the photo it says: “Love at a distance, soon we will embrace each other again.”
We continue in the ascent of Italy, and we arrive in the north, in Bologna, where Ignazio is.
Ignazio returned to Bologna, where he has his apartment and where his sister Nina was, who was already waiting for him in solitary confinement.
The situation in Bologna is much more serious than in Sicily or Abruzzo.
Ignazio has a long phone call with his friend Fabio Ingrassia, which I translate briefly for you.
Immediately Fabio asks Ignazio if he has bought the new earring, and Ignazio affirms and shows it to him, then asks Ignazio, how is the first day of quarantine and Ignazio answers: Arturo, television and one meter from his sister Nina. Fabio tells him that in Marsala (where Fabio is) there are two new cases of C19.
Nina cooks, and Ignazio confirms that he is now vegan. He also shows a pizza that his sister made him on his arrival, heart-shaped and with vegan foods.
An exchange of ideas was born with Fabio who says that he eats real meat and Ignazio tells him that he is only a skeptic.
A message arrives from Gianluca, who is following their live, and he says that in Abruzzo they will create vegan arrosticini (typical food made with meat) for Ignazio.
Fabio reports that friends in Miami have said that the C19 is spreading and both say that it was not taken seriously there.
While chatting, Ignazio comes to a contact with Red Ronnie, who asks him where he is and Ignazio confirms that he is in Bologna.
So they talk about the hospital in Marsala, to which Fabio made a donation and Ignazio also confirms that he will do it too and therefore communicates the data for the hospital.
They talk about Ignazio’s guitars that he brought to Bologna, and he admits that he is training.
Every now and then Ignazio has sweet tenderness with his beloved Arturo.
Then Ignazio and Fabio experiment with chords and songs simultaneously with their guitars.
Ignazio asks Arturo what song he wants to hear ….
Arturo stretched over Ignazio and he says to him: “Do you want to rest a bit? I am dad, not a sofa!”
So the first quarantine days of IL VOLO have passed, but there are many days to pass, but the important thing is that they are safe.
Here in Italy, the situation has worsened and I think the boys were shocked on their return.
But even this period will pass.
I also recommend to you, American friends, stay safe!
On August 16th, Piero received an award from his beloved NARO.
Let’s go in order:
This message was published by Piero, I translate the words:
On August 16th evening I will have the pleasure of dedicating time to my splendid NARO: being recognized and honored, from one’s native country, is an honor that is not at all obvious.
Here are the roots, here my story is born: the houses, the alleys, the faces, with which I grew up and of which I could tell a thousand stories.
At the moment, I will tell you only one, the affection I have for my country.
All Naro waits on the beautiful staircase.
Here is the moment of Piero’s arrival.
And here is the awarding of the prize, by the mayor, very proud of our Piero.
Mayor = Meanwhile I wanted to put the institutional band, even if it is wrong (Piero rushes to fix the band), to give the official status of the institution, the solemnity of this moment, to pay our affection, our gratitude, to a great, to an international star, which is Piero. (applause)
Considering that at this moment, I do not feel I am just the mayor of Naro and its 7500 inhabitants, but I feel like the mayor of all the Naresi (inhabitants of Naro) scattered all over the world.
So I make myself an interpreter, of all the Naresi, scattered around the world, to say THANK YOU to Piero, for the emotions he always gives us. I also greet all the friends of Canicattì who are here for Piero.
I will not dwell much, but I must tell you that I am particularly excited. You saw the first part of the video (before calling Piero, they projected a video dedicated to Piero ), well, that little boy was Piero …. (to Piero) I don’t know where your grandfather is … . (Piero indicates with his hand, on the stairway). Pietro, a big hug to Pietro, to whom a family friendship, of many years, binds me.
That mayor of 10 years ago, when Piero started it all, was me.
To give you the prize, I would like to call Magda. (Magda is a small child, new promising star of Naro, Piero goes to meet Magda and kisses her.)
With the hope that in 10 years we will be here again to celebrate even Magda.
Best wishes Piero. (kisses and hugs to Piero and delivery of the prize)
I was at Piero’s house, I saw, how many plaques, how many photos with “the powerful of the world” ….. Piero, but this is the gift of NARO !!!(applause)
One last thing and I finish, a memory, when they, in the theater of Taormina, dedicated the song to their mother, and he bowed and Eleonora, beat the song’s rhythm on his leg ….. Eleonora and Gaetano, thank you for what you you have done, for believing us, for the sacrifices you have made to make him a great man.(applause, a second awarding ceremony continues, during which Vincenzo Porrello gives Piero a special gift.)
And here is the video broadcast by local television. At the beginning Piero sings a beautiful song “NARO FULGENTISSIMA” (I think his grandfather composed it, during the video, while Piero sings, you can see his father Gaetano and his mother Eleonora, sitting on the staircase, near a white lantern.)
Mayor= For us it is a source of great pride, to celebrate 10 years of IL VOLO activity, but in particular, allow me, of our fellow citizen Piero Barone. A boy who is an international star, but who has remained a humble boy, has remained a boy devoted to his city.
I am the mayor of all the Naresi scattered in the world and for us, having Piero Barone this evening, who is the ambassador of the beauties of this city, but above all of the heart and love, of this city, can only make me absolutely happy.
Piero= My first thought, but I also think of all of you here, goes to the Bracco family, for the pain that struck them. (a young citizen of Naro, on vacation on the lake near Rome, drowned … applause).
The love I have for this country, and for our city, will never end.
Host= What do you feel for this city?
Piero= Naro, it’s me, it’s my blood. I grew up here, my whole story is here.
If it’s about my past, it’s all my grandfather’s fault, he gave me my passion for music.
When I was 8, it was he, my grandfather Pietro, who had me engraved, “UN AMORE COSÌ GRANDE”.
In one of those beautiful summer evenings over 10 years ago, my grandfather made my father hear that song, and from that moment, my father, stubborn as he is, every time someone came into the garage (he repaired cars), put me up on the bonnet of cars and made me sing either “GRANADA” or “UN AMORE COSÌ GRANDE”. I couldn’t take any more, every customer heard “GRANADA” or “UN AMORE COSÌ GRANDE”(Piero’s parents laugh).
In the same evening, there was the election of Miss Naro, and here is Piero photographed with all the participants.
Some shots of the evening, thanks to Il Volo Sicilia fanpage.
What a beautiful emotion Piero, to hear you sing that beautiful song dedicated to Naro.
And your words, for your city, fill every citizen with pride.
Bravo Piero !!
Piero Barone with Nonno Piero Ognibene Singing “Naro Fulgentissima”
Credit to owners of all photos and videos.
Come in and share the love of life, friends and Il Volo!