Tag Archives: Nico Arezzo

Let the Fans Speak by Susan

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
Dear Susan,
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.
Barbara Gabriel
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.
Gale
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
Hello Susan,
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!
Ciao,
Sally
Yes, Sally that is true Ignazio. Always polite and patient!

Love from Montreal Canada
Judith Phillips – Thu, Dec 16, 2021
Dear Susan,
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.
Chau!
Magdalena Shaw
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  🙂
Kate
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
Susan,
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.
Lill
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
(Translation follows)
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
Oh Susan,
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.
Thank you,
Gina
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.
Very sincerely
Virginia Kohks
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.
Just curious.
Thanks so much.
Virginia Kohks
She adores you guys!

The Tribute that intrigued!
Emily Peretz – Thu, Aug 5, 2021
Hi Susan!
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:  susan.flightcrew@yahoo.com
To read more Il Volo stories visit us at www.ilvoloflightcrw.com

 

 

 

La Rotta ~ The Route

As a rule, I never write a story about the same person two weeks in a row but, I have to make an exception this week. Ignazio do you ever sleep?
In my story last week, I mentioned that there are times that so much is going on with Ignazio that I need to continue to write about him week after week. Last week we took a look at where Nico is in his career and this week Ignazio introduced us to a singer named Giada Luppi! I’m sure the first thing you’re going to say is I know that name. That is correct because she just won the World Figure Skating Championships in Asuncion, Paraguay.
So, what does she have to do with Ignazio? Ignazio just signed her to Floki! Yes, she is not only a Championship skater, but also a singer!
So, let’s start by meeting the skater!

Giada with an intense facial expression while skatingCloseup of Giada with her arms extended while skating

The eighteen-year-old, Giada Luppi is from Crespellano-Valsamoggia, in the province of Bologna. She has been skating since she was five years old. She has won two European Championships and five Italian championships and now she has won the World Figure Skating Championships. This translates to two European golds, in 2019 and last month at home, in Riccione, two world championship silvers and five titles at the Italian championships. Her win on October 3rd, was in the junior world champion in the free single program at the World Figure Skating Championship. An amazing career for the young Emilian skater. Her artistic skills, strength and gracefulness is a perfect mix that has allowed her in recent years to establish herself nationally and internationally. Always to the rhythm of music, which never fails in her workouts, Giada prefers to work out to a lot of soul music, including Aretha Franklin, Whitney Houston, Alicia Keys, but also Giorgia, Mia Martini, Mina, Alex Britti.
Giada doing a jump while skating Giada doing a squat while skatingGiada lying on the floor at the end of her skating routine
Needless to say, she is a phenomenal skater.
Among her role models is Paola Fraschini, the skater who at Sanremo 2021 sang “Musica Leggerissima,” by Colapesce and Dimartino. “Seeing a sports icon like her on the stage of the Ariston was a source of great pride for all of us,” admits Giada, “Paola came out of the world of skating, full of world titles, to devote herself to a career as a performer in Cirque du Soleil, so here in Italy we lost sight of her because she was always around the world. Finding her again at the Festival, was a surprise.”

Giada has a very clear idea about her future. “I will compete a few more years because I think I have already dedicated so much of my life to skating and then I would like to devote myself completely to music.” Certainly, Giada is not ready to hang up her skates. In the video of her first single, La Rotta (The Route), Giada proves skating and singing are not incompatible activities. She would like to carry on these two passions, on the model of the R&B star Usher.

A collage of Giada competition photos

Giada says, “Skating is part of my life, while singing started as an outlet and then became a necessity, something I can’t do without.”

Ignazio squatting on the sill of a window leaning against the side

Enter Ignazio!

Giada kicking up her heel behind her Giada looking back over her left shoulder

While we slept, Ignazio has signed Giada Luppi to a contract with Floki! And then there were two! Ignazio, your family is growing!

Collage of Ignazio Boschetto photos

It seems our, sexy, Italian tenor/producer knows how to move and shake in the music industry! First there was Nico and now the fantastic, Giada Luppi!

Nico and Giada

If there’s one thing I can say about Ignazio, he is a dreamer and he always has his eyes open for young talent. Ignazio’s dream is to help other young people have the opportunity he had along with Piero and Gianluca.

From when he was on the competition circuit, Ignazio always wanted healthy competition and fair opportunities for everyone. His failure to see this in the competitions led him to almost give up his dreams. He never wants to see that happen to another young person. What better way to help these young people than to give them the opportunity to record with a small label run by a very famous person who is the epitome of music!  
I predict that someday that small label will become a leader in the music industry!
While Giada was competing in Paraguary, back home in Italy, her first single, La Rotta (The Route), was released. The song was a collaboration with Ignazio. Giada says, “This is an unpublished work written by me born from the collaboration with Ignazio Boschetto of “Il Volo.”  
Yes, they wrote the song together! “This song is a cheerful invitation to regain possession of one’s life after a difficult period,” explains Giada, “it can help relieve the stress of the times.” Giada says she has written over 60 songs! When does she have the time? She must be taking lessons from Ignazio!
Michele Torpedine with Giada
And who might her manger be? Yes, it is, Michele Torpedine. The song was produced by Ignazio and Michele together with Bruno Farinelli, Ignazio’s drummer for Il Volo.
Giada said, “In the future I would like to continue to walk the road of music, but without hanging up my skates.”
With her debut single, Giada enters what she hopes will become her career in the entertainment world. Giada explains, “I dream of singing and skating together, why not? I will compete for a few more years, then my life will be music”
In an article by Andrea Spinelli, Giada said, “My future is in music.”
Here are some excerpts from the interview.
Andrea: Why did you choose to debut with La Rotta?
Giada: It’s a very cheerful piece that can help relieve the stress of the times.”
Andrea: Who would you like to share a song with?
Giada: My idol is Mina and, the biggest dream would be to do it with her, but also with two male artists that I respect very much like Mengoni and Ramazzotti”.
Andrea: Do you know Paola Fraschini, the skater who choreographed in Sanremo with her evolutions “Musica leggerissima” by Colapesce and Dimartino?
Giada: Seeing a sports icon like her on the Ariston stage was a source of great pride for all of us. Paola left the world of skating, full of world titles, to devote herself to a career as a performer in Cirque du Soleil, so here in Italy we lost a bit of sight of her because she was always around the world. Finding her again at the Festival was a surprise.”
Andrea: Isn’t it a bit of a force to perform with the skater in Sanremo?
Giada: If Achille Lauro on that stage was not a force, why should a skater be?”
Andrea: Are skating and song distinct activities?
Giada: Well, in my video I sing and skate. Even an R&B star like Usher sometimes sings on skates with a lot of choreography. I’d like to do it too. There are people like Elodie dancing and singing, I would love to sing and skate.
Andrea: In 2019 you participated in Sanremo Young.
Giada: I auditioned and arrived in front of the commission and Antonella Clerici, but I didn’t go through the last phase.
Andrea: How do you see the future?
Giada: I will compete a few more years because I think I have already dedicated so much of my life to skating and I would like to devote myself completely to music.”
With her debut single, in collaboration with Ignazio and manager Michele Torpedine, she entered what she hoped would become her career in the entertainment world. But in the meantime, the 18-year-old is crowned world champion on roller skates. “I dream of singing and skating together, why not? I will compete for a few more years, then my life will be music.”
So, Ignazio you did it again!  And we get the honor of watching The Route of GiadaWe were fortunate to have the opportunity of watching Floki take off with the signing of Nico! We will continue to watch Floki grow with each new entertainer. We are enjoying the journey!
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:  susan.flightcrew@yahoo.com
To read more Il Volo stories visit us at www.ilvoloflightcrw.com

 

Credit to owners of all photos and videos.

 

 

 

 

Ignazio’s Genius and Nico’s Energy!

Let’s mix it up a bit today! I decided to write about two amazing young men who celebrated birthdays this week! Our own Ignazio Boschetto and Nico Arezzo! Two shining stars. Similar personalities and similar genius! In the dictionary, under the word music, you will find pictures of Ignazio and Nico. They are the epitome of music!
It’s been a while since I wrote about Nico. Many of the new fans don’t know who he is and, the old fans ask me about him all the time. They like to know what’s going on in his life and his music. They’ve been following him since day one! For me day one was the Verona Festival Show in 2017! An astonishing young man. For those of you who are meeting Nico for the first time, hold on to your seats because you’re in for an exciting ride. Of course, we can’t talk about Nico without talking about Ignazio! The man behind Nico!

Collage of Ignazio photos

So, let’s start with Ignazio!
For all those new fans, I know you all love Ignazio our amazing tenor but, did you know he is also a producer? At 25 Ignazio started his own production company.  Does that surprise you? It doesn’t surprise me. It makes a lot of sense to me. At the beginning of 2020 Ignazio started a production company called, Floki Production and the first person he signed was Nico Arezzo!

So much of this I said before but, it needs to be said again. 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.
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!
Ignazio’s story is about music but, it is also about family! Ignazio comes from a very close-knit family starting with his dad, Vito, who has recently left us but will always be in our hearts, his mom, Caterina and his sister Nina. Why do we know these people so well? Because we met them when Ignazio first started out and the guys traveled with their parents. So, when we talk about Ignazio or any of the guys we always seem to come back to their families, as well we should, because we know that Ignazio’s good values come from his parents.
This morning when I started writing this story, a story came up on Instagram that I was a bit surprised to see. It was Piero walking around San Luca. I’ve never seen Piero there before. I know Piero lives in Bologna now but, I always consider Bologna as Ignazio’s city! But this is actually a good introduction to Ignazio’s early years.

Ignazio's parents, Caterina and Vito Nina and brother Ignazio giving a thumbs up Left to right: Vito, Caterina and son, Ignazio

In an interview, Ignazio said he would go on Sunday morning walks, with the family, in the center of Bologna. Under the portico there was a lady who made fresh pasta and he said his mother would buy Tortellini from her for Sunday dinner.
What are these porticos?
The Emilia-Romagna region of Italy is known for its porticos. Bologna is in the province of Emilia-Romagna.  Ignazio was born in Bologna and after living in Marsala through his teenage years and early twenties, he returned to Bologna.  In all the cities the shops are covered by porticos so you can shop in any weather. Entire blocks are covered by porticos. The most famous portico being the Portico of San Luca. The Portico was built to protect a painting by St. Luke of the Virgin Mary and Jesus from the rain. Every year the painting is taken from the Basilica of San Luca and brought in procession to  the Cathedral of St. Peter’s in Bologna. This procession happens every May. The San Luca portico is the longest covered walkway in the world. It is 2.24 miles.
So, our story for Ignazio begins in Bologna where he grew up, went to school, played lots of soccer and sang in the choir until the time his family decided to move back to Marsala.
At ten years old Ignazio found himself in Marsala. The last place in the world he wanted to be! But like any other ten-year-old, the minute he made friends everything changed.
Ignazio the Singer
While Ignazio’s life in Bologna was all about soccer, his life in Marsala was all about music.
In Marsala Ignazio joined the school choir. Every day he would practice his singing and the people who visited his mother’s pizzeria had the opportunity to hear his beautiful voice! Eventually one of the customers approached his mother and suggested Ignazio take singing lessons. So, Ignazio traded his soccer ball for music lessons and the rest is history!  
Ignazio the Songwriter

In my story Land of Sages and Fools ~ Made of Devils and Saints, I focus on a different side of Ignazio.

Ignazio in a white tshirt sitting outside in a red chair

I wrote: “Sometimes I feel like I spend every day of my life writing about Ignazio! In the last year I wrote over fifty stories about the guys and, it seems as if half of them were about Ignazio’s projects. Because of all his projects, on occasion I’ve had to write two and three stories a week about him, wearing many different hats. Entertainer, Lyricist, Manager, Entrepreneur!”

Sicily and the region of Trapani

Last year Ignazio wrote the theme song for a new Rai Series called Màkari! Truthfully, who better to write a song about Sicily and the region of Trapani than a native child! No, Ignazio wasn’t born in Sicily but, for Italians, who your parents are is who you are so, in fact, Ignazio is Sicilian.
It amazes me that the young boy who went to Sicily kicking and screaming when he was ten, became the spokesman for Marsala, around the world, and now for the region of Trapani. Ignazio came to embrace the land of his parents and he loves all the wonders of Sicily. Sicily is different than Italy. Yes, I know Sicily is Italy but, how the Sicilians live and, who they are is very different. Ignazio’s song invites us to take a better look at this other land in the south. It speaks of “a land of sages and a land of fools, made from devils and saints.” Yes, that’s what Sicily is! They honor their saints while keeping their superstitions!
Ignazio invites you to live a new reality through his eyes. He invites us to see a different side of Sicily through his beautiful theme song, Màkari.
Ignazio the Producer
So now we’ve met the singer and the songwriter so next we need to meet the producer. But first we need to meet Nico!
Nico the Energy
Nico’s story begins 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 hands” … but soon the need to put one note after another brought him to the guitar.

Nico with his mom, dad and sister  Very young Nico at the drums

Both of his parents are entertainers. His mother Emanuela Curcio is a dancer and a dance teacher, and his father Peppe Arezzo is a pianist and an Orchestra Conductor. Nico also has a younger sister Emma.
But what is it I see in this family that gives me a good feeling? Values, good values! Like Ignazio’s family! Their good values stand out! It seems they were raised in the same way!
I talk a lot about values because I think it molds beautiful people. To understand where I’m coming from, let’s take a closer look at the Arezzo family.
When you’re a family of entertainers, it seems someone is always traveling so, whenever everyone has the opportunity to be together, it’s a festival. And what do they celebrate? Everything!
Nico explains it in this way.
I’m down! (in Ragusa). It’s Christmas time. We celebrate birthdays when it’s not the right day. We celebrate birthdays when we are together. Tomorrow or maybe the day after tomorrow it’s my turn!
And during his time at home for Christmas 2020, Nico experienced his first earthquake. He said, Yesterday I felt my first earthquake in history. It was weird, powerful! I’m down! It’s Christmas time and everything is shaking! Happy birthday to everyone.
How did Nico get to where he is?  Certainly, he got his talent from his mom and dad but how did he get to where he is today?

Nico first came to my attention in 2017 when he won the Festival Show in Verona with the song “Se Vuoi” (If You Want). I happened to be in Italy at the time and I was very taken by his performance. Nico can be very engaging and, you can get lost in Nico’s words and actions. Nico said “Se Vuoi” made him move! I say Nico made “Se Vuoi” move! Nico said he was drawn to this 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 know he captured the attention of at least one of the judges that night, Michele Torpedine.

Michele Torpedine presents Nico the trophy for winning the Festival Show

I remember watching Michele during the performance. He was feeling Nico’s every move. I was not surprised when he took Nico on!
So, we have the beginnings for both these guys now let’s put them together to see how they work together.

Nico with guitar Nico with Ignazio both smiling

And so, the collaboration begins!
Let’s listen to what Michele Torpedine had to say about this event, “This is the first moment where we understood.”
What makes Nico so good? He’s very talented and the team is amazing! Nico Arezzo, Ignazio Boschetto and Michele Torpedine! Collaboration complete!

Nico is versatile! How about Nico and Ignazio singing a Pino Daniele medley? Anyone who sings a Pino Daniele song, gets a seat in my corner!

Nico along with Ignazio, Davide Marchi and Francesco Landi, wrote and set to music the song “Volo” which Nico 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. He can make that guitar Scream!
In January 2020, Ignazio started Floki Production. Nico was the first artist to sign a contract with Ignazio under Floki. This made lots of sense to me.  In many ways Nico reminds me of Ignazio. He knows what he wants and, he goes after it.
Perfect Audio! 4 Cameras! A Crazy Band and, it was all LIVE ON INSTAGRAM! 
Ignazio the Genius
And, in the mist of the pandemic, Ignazio did a high-quality sound LIVE on Instagram to present the first release by Floki. “Gorilla!” This was never done before but of course the genius of Ignazio brought it all together. It was an amazing event!
While the music world was trying to restart, Ignazio, at age 25, has made his debut as a producer. Ignazio said, “Production has always been my dream. It started with an idea to give a chance to those who deserve a break.” Ignazio reminds us “as it happened 11 years ago to himself, Gianluca and Piero.”

Photo collage of IL VOLO

Speaking of Floki, Ignazio says, ′′Working through a small label gives you the opportunity to follow means, believing in people even before the project and following them step by step on their path, discarding logic on the side.”
Ignazio signed Nico Arezzo a year ago but, he had his eye on him since 2017 when he appeared on Xfactor and the Festival Show in Verona. Ignazio said: “After the victory at the Festival Show, Michele Torpedine started following him and, slowly, he and I came to the decision to create a label.”
Ignazio spoke of the release of Gorilla and the debut of Floki. “Yeah! This is the moment Nico has been waiting for, for two and a half years. We could have anticipated the times, but I think we did the right thing to wait. Nico needed to grow calmly in writing. And he’s doing it very well. Yesterday was a debut for me too and it’s a great satisfaction to see written on Spotify under the title of the song, Floki Production.” I know I loved seeing Floki Production on Amazon too!
Wonderful achievement, Ignazio!

In “Gorilla”, Nico comes alive! He is the Gorilla in the jungle! He has the feeling and the expression for this song. He’s bouncing all over the stage. He’s definitely got the moves! It’s so catchy! And people love it!

Nico with gorilla art superimposed on his photo Nico at the piano

Following the release of Gorilla, Nico did an interview with Nico Donvito, an Italian Music Blogger. In this interview, I saw another side of Nico. We hear this young man talk about his music. His place in the music industry. How he got there and all the people who are responsible for his journey. When I listened to this interview, I shook my head and said, he’s just like Ignazio.
I heard a, very, intelligent and responsible young man who has worked hard to get to where he is. He talks about, who he is, where he came from and how he sees his future.
Right out the gate, Nico impressed me with his insight. Nico saw “Gorilla” as a means of escape from where we are in our world today and an expression of where he finds himself in the world.
Nico said, Gorilla’ has a fresh taste, because in the last few months we have been a bit obliged to heavy thoughts, to stop and reflect on important things, to close ourselves in ourselves. At a certain point the moment comes when you need a beer on the beach with your friends, ‘Gorilla’ is just that, something not at all thick which and, in certain situations, can be essential.”
That’s pretty deep and right on. It was almost as if Nico was saying I wrote this song two years ago, but this was its moment. It’s when it was needed. To say that the ‘Gorilla’ is that moment in time when you need to kick back or as Nico put it when you need a beer on the beach with your friends, yes, that’s exactly what “Gorilla” is. Its’ light and intriguing and it brought us away from all the madness that preceded it. Perhaps, the finger sign that Ignazio made the day that “Gorilla” was released, that seemed to upset so many people, was nothing more than Ignazio saying: Let’s take the weight of the world and toss it aside. You had your way and now, we’re going to have ours!
And where is Nico now? In his own words, “There are days that if I focus, Traffic Lights go green when I want.”

Nico’s new song, “Polline (pollen)” has been released.  Nico says, ‘I wrote almost all of my song in this notebook. ‘Polline’ was born a year ago. This summer this notebook fell into the sea, dried in the sun and ‘Polline’ remains legible.”
In a review a writer said: This is a “new piece in the path of the artist produced by Ignazio Boschetto. Nico Arezzo’s ‘Polline’ is the single that marks the return of one of the most talented songwriters of the new generation already the winner of the Festival Show a few years ago.”
I couldn’t have said it better myself!
Nico tell us, “This song has been ready for at least a year, in the meantime I have written many other things, I have explored a new musical genre that you will listen to soon and I am evolving but, this piece, I absolutely did not want to abandon it because I am very attached to it.
‘Polline’ is a song to which I am very attached, especially, literally. It’s a piece that comes almost as a challenge. They said to me, ‘Can you talk about a relationship that’s over but, looking back, you can say ‘but it was beautiful’? And so, even though there may be a small void hidden between the lines of the song, thinking that I haven’t lived through that story would make me sadder.”
And how did Nico preview this new song on Instagram? Honey jars! Nico said, “I’m releasing a new track this month. Every day I will add a jar of honey in my fridge with a letter on it, not in order. I start today! Go into my stories, write in the comments the first word you think of.  Try not to guess right away or you will ruin everything for me! Every day a jar a letter! Oddly, though my Italian is very limited, I guessed what it was!
What is the song about?  The answer is in one line of the song!  “They say you can understand a person from what you find in his fridge.” Let’s go to Nico’s fridge and see what he’s really all about!
Another amazing video! It makes me smile! It makes me laugh! It makes me happy! Nico, everything you do excites me! From day one I knew you would bring a fresh approach to the music industry and, I was right. You have such energy and, all your projects are ambitious like you. Your videos present the real you!
Before I end this story, I want to go back to my story about Ignazio’s song Màkari. Why? Because this song says a lot about Ignazio. It tells us who he is and where his heart is! Everything else falls into place.
In a video, Ignazio talked about the summers he spent in S. Vito Capo in the landscape of Màkari. What is it that draws him back year after year? Is it the “silence” of the land that screams for you to open your eyes and look around at the wonder of the landscape or, the traditions of the land that go deep into your soul? It seems to Ignazio, Màkari is joy and love and so he will never forget it! And what does that say! Simple! This is Ignazio’s story!!! His story of Sicily, the land he left to pursue his dream and the land he is drawn back to time and again. Yes, Bologna is his home but, Sicily is the place he comes home to!
Mix  Ignazio’s Genius and Nico’s Energy and what do you get? A Complicated but, always Delightful mixture!
Join me next week as I go back Through the Fields of My Mind and open the door to a new adventure!

Happy Birthday Ignazio & Nico!! 

If you would like to share a story with me, please email:  susan.flightcrew@yahoo.com
To read more Il Volo stories visit us at www.ilvoloflightcrw.com
*Floki Production by Ignazio Boschetto and Michele Torpedine. Polline was produced at Take Away Studios in Modena.

 

Credit to owners of all photos and videos.

Ignazio is a Beautiful Soul

If this story sounds familiar to you it’s because I had to write a similar story last year about our, Ignazio.
When I go on Instagram or Facebook and I see stories that hurt the guys, it upsets me. These are three of the nicest guys you’re ever going to meet in your life. It’s not just a career for them, it’s their life, their whole life. It’s what they’ve dedicated themselves to since they were teenagers. Everything they do they do for us the Fans. We as you know, aren’t just fans to them, we are family. They grew up with us and they know how important we are and, they do things every day to try to please us. Sometimes it’s a picture, sometimes a song or sometimes just their joking around. Then there are days, not too often, when they are quiet, they just hide themselves in their own lives. Lives that you and, I take for granted every day, they only get to enjoy occasionally. No, they can’t be out there for us 24/7 but they try their best to make themselves visible and available.
Even though we are like family to them, they do have families of their own. Families that they have spent so little time with over the last twelve years. The pandemic has been very hard on all of us. It was also hard for the guys because they had to leave us their fan family. If anything, there was some good that came out of this, the guys got to stay at home with their families. Since they were teenagers, they never had the opportunity to stay at home with their families for a whole year. And I think Ignazio expressed it best in an interview when he said, “if it wasn’t for the pandemic, I wouldn’t have spent those last (precious months) months with my dad.”
I chose to write about Ignazio this week because of some sad things that have been said about him on Instagram. I’ve had to do this on other occasions for Piero and Gianluca. This is a very important time for Ignazio. It’s a time when he needs to be near family and, among other things, to deal with the loss of his father. The purpose of this piece is to show you, those who don’t already know it, how, really, nice Ignazio is and has always been since he was a child!
Let me start by telling you about what Ignazio does for us with his music and what he contributes to the music industry.
If Ignazio did nothing more than sing for 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 ten years from now. Along with Gianluca and Piero these three, amazing, men have achieved in ten years what most men could only dream of achieving 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.
I want you to 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 operatic pop opera one day.

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.”
Let’s look at how Ignazio has helped aspiring young artist.
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.
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.
And what about the theme song for the Rai Series Makari.

Let me add to this by recognizing Ignazio’s production company, Floki Productions. At 25 he started his own production company. Does this surprise you? It doesn’t surprise me. It makes a lot of sense to me.
Floki Productions I’m sure is Ignazio’s dream. So, where does the dream begin. Nico Arezzo!
In many ways Nico reminds me of Ignazio. He knows what he wants and, he goes after it. Nico was the first artist to sign a contract with Ignazio under Floki Productions.
Nico Arezzo and Ignazio
You will remember that Ignazio released Nico’s song Gorilla on June 30, 2020 (in the middle of the pandemic) in a “Live on Instagram.” Let’s listen to what Ignazio had to say about that:
“On Thursday night we were the first to do a high-quality sound live on Instagram.”
People wouldn’t dream of doing what Ignazio did. What a spectacular show!
While the music world was trying to restart, Ignazio, at age 25, made his debut as a producer. And what a phenomenal production it was!
Ignazio said, “Production has always been my dream. It started with an idea to give a chance to those who deserve a break,” Ignazio reminds us “as it happened 11 years ago to myself, Gianluca and Piero.”
Some of you may remember the interview I did last October with Ignazio’s teacher Ermelinda De Bartoli. (you can read the full interview “Watching Ignazio Take Flight” on www.ilvoloflightcrw.com)  Now I want to go back to that interview and pull out some of the questions and answers which will give you some insight as to who Ignazio really is:
Ermelinda and Susan De Bartoli
Excerpts from the Interview of October 2020….
Susan: Ignazio’s mother said Ignazio was always very serious and responsible! How would you describe him as a teenager?
Ermelinda: I met him when he was only 14 years old. He was at the beginning of adolescence and, he was always joking. He was very attached to his family. He grew up in Bologna because the family moved there for work and, at the age of ten he moved to Marsala when the family decided to return. In Marsala he attended middle school and two years of high school. At school he was playful and sociable, with a very open and modest character. He often told us about his passion for singing which he studied with a teacher. His life as a teenager was not hard, because, as soon as he started his career at the age of 15, his life changed due to the numerous commitments linked to his success and the new path taken with Il Volo.

Susan: Ignazio is very kind and compassionate. Was this something you noticed about him as a teenager?
Ermelinda: He was very generous and affable to everyone. In particular, he was very compassionate towards some pupils with disabilities, with whom he often conversed, holding them in high regard and showing empathy.
I remember an episode one evening after he won Ti Lascio Una Canzone, the whole class with me and another colleague went to the pizzeria. Ignazio was just fifteen and, when it was time to pay the bill, he came to me and said: “Professor, you are my guest.” I understood that in him there was so much kindness in his manner and in his soul, in this case, a kind gesture towards a woman.
Susan: When Ignazio was your student, he was already studying with Lilliana Adreanò. Ignazio said he had a great passion for soccer and, he loved to play every afternoon but, it had been less so after he started taking singing lessons. He said, “I had less free time and then no free time and I realized that singing was more important than all the rest.” How do you think Ignazio saw his future at that time?
Ermelinda: It is true to study singing he began to leave other hobbies. After Ti Lascio Una Canzone despite having been praised by these great Italian singers, who sang with him, I remember that he told all this with great modesty and simplicity and despite the fact that he had won he never spoke of great expectations nor did he delude himself, at least, until the moment in which Michele Torpedine and Tony Renis hired them after a short time, to form Il Volo. I heard the comments on him by experts such as Claudio Cecchetto and Al Bano who, when he told him that he had recently taken singing lessons, were amazed.
Another detail that I noticed is that while he sang, he always kept his eyes closed and he told me that he was doing it because having recently lost his grandfather, who he adored and, it was he who Ignazio thought of while he sang and, he sang with his heart.
Susan: Ignazio went from your classroom to Ti Lascio Una Canzone and immediately became a star. You told me after the Italian program, he just took off. You said you saw him take off! What was it like watching all of this happen before your eyes? Did it seem like it was all happening very fast?
Ermelinda: Of course, having seen him “take flight” in a short time and, see him pass by the school desks, and then on a stage was for me, as for all his companions, a great emotion and a source of great pride.
Susan: Did you see a change in Ignazio during this time?
Ermelinda: Ignazio was still at school, after his first success, and with all of us, he always remained himself … with a modesty and genuineness that still distinguishes him today.
Susan: During the performances Ignazio sang with some really great singers. Massimo Ranieri, Albano, Fausto Leali to name a few. These singers were in awe of him. Do you think that Ignazio understood what was happening to him?
Ermelinda: Yes, these singers were more than in awe of what they heard, they were astonished, something that Ignazio confirmed when we asked him.  And, to think that he was still a kid, and had not yet completed the development of the vocal cords.
Yes, Ignazio from the point of view of his singing ability had already understood in comparison with these famous singers that he had what it takes to become even greater.
Susan: How did your other students feel about what was going on in Ignazio’s life?
Ermelinda: His classmates were very happy and excited. Every Saturday night none of us left the house. We all waited to see Ignazio on TV … and on Monday when he returned to school, for the class, it was a riot and bursting questions, and also a source of pride to kids as they were, to have him as a companion … the little big star, their friend.
Susan: Did you every stop to think about how this all happened? How did a young man from a very simple family suddenly become a superstar?
Ermelinda: It often occurred to me that what was happening to Ignazio was a fairy tale … of those things that you think can only happen in fairy tales. He is a boy with a great talent hitherto unknown, from a very modest family but very united and with healthy values, he was able to tread the scenes of half the world … from his cottage in the countryside to a duet with Barbra Streisand and much more that we know.
The way in which all this happened is told by the facts that there was a first revelation of his talent and Ti Lasco Una Canzone, as we know, could remain there as it happens to many without getting anything else; then as he also said he had the luck of an intuition of the director who suggested to the managers Michele Torpedine and Tony Renis to form the trio.
Susan: How did you feel when Il Volo won Sanremo?
Ermelinda: When Il Volo won in Sanremo, that evening, in addition to the great emotion, I retraced the periods of when Ignazio was still young, always talking with humility about his first successes and I also thought that from the beginning I told myself that he was a phenomenon, so seeing him on that stage, the most important in Italy, was for me just as it was for all Marsala people.
Susan: Finally, what would you like to add about Ignazio that we haven’t already covered?
Ermelinda: I think I have said everything about him of what I know and what I have had the opportunity to perceive. When I talk about Ignazio, with others, I always say that he is very humble, modest and always very affectionate with the people who meet him. I still say: Ignazio, is a beautiful soul.
For Ignazio family is important. They are everything to him. So, please understand that he needs to be with his family right now. You like being with your family. How about posting some nice pictures of the Ignazio we love? Soon he will be in the limelight again. Until then, let’s remember, Ignazio is a Beautiful Soul! Respect that soul!
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:  susan.flightcrew@yahoo.com
To read more Il Volo stories visit us at www.ilvoloflightcrw.com

Credit to owners of all photos and videos.

Nico Arezzo ~ Complicated and Delightful!! by Susan

It’s always difficult to decide where to start with Nico. Yes, he’s complicated but, always delightful! Perhaps looking at where Nico came from can give us a better idea of who he is.

One year old Nico walking with Dad, Peppe

Young Nico playing the drums

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 hands” … 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. Nico also has a younger sister Emma. Once I commented to Peppe, she’s a little Nico!  Like Nico, she’s into everything!
But what is it I see in this family that gives me a good feeling? Values, good values! I talk a lot about values because I think it molds beautiful people. When I write about Il Volo or when I write my BOIN stories what do I always go back to, good values. To understand where I’m coming from, let’s take a closer look at the Arezzo family.
When you’re a family of entertainers, it seems someone is always traveling so, whenever everyone has the opportunity to be together, it’s a festival. And what do they celebrate? Everything! Nico explains it in this way.
I’m down, (in Ragusa, his home). It’s Christmas time. We celebrate birthdays when it’s not the right day. We celebrate birthdays when we are together. Tomorrow or maybe the day after tomorrow it’s my turn!
And during his time at home for Christmas 2020, Nico experienced his first earthquake. He said, “Yesterday I felt my first earthquake in history. It was weird, powerful! I’m down! It’s Christmas time and everything is shaking! Happy birthday to everyone.”
“Merry Christmas to everyone. Happy birthday today or yesterday? If it was yesterday sorry for the delay. Happy birthday to you.”

Nico with his Mom, Dad and sister

How did Nico get to where he is?  Certainly, he got his talent from his mom and dad but how did he get to where he is today?
Nico first came to my attention in 2017 when he won the Festival Show in Verona with the song “Se Vuoi” (If You Want). I happened to be in Italy at the time and I was very taken by his performance at the Festival. Nico can be very engaging and, you can get lost in Nico’s words and actions. Nico said “Se Vuoi” made him move! I say Nico made “Se Vuoi” move! Nico said he was drawn to this 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.
And what did Michele have to say about this event, “This is the first moment where we understood.” He certainly did! After the Festival Michele signed Nico and so did Ignazio! Great idea! Great choice!
What makes Nico so good? He’s very talented and the team is amazing! Nico Arezzo, Ignazio Boschetto and Michele Torpedine! Collaboration complete!
Nico is versatile! How about Nico and Ignazio singing a Pino Daniele medley? Anyone who sings a Pino Daniele song, gets a seat in my corner!

Nico along with Ignazio, Davide Marchi and Francesco Landi, wrote and set to music the song “Volo” which Nico 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. He can make that guitar Scream!
In January 2020, Ignazio started Floki Productions. Nico was the first artist to sign a contract with Ignazio under Floki. This made lots of sense to me.  In many ways Nico reminds me of Ignazio. He knows what he wants and he goes after it.
And, in the mist of the pandemic, Ignazio did a LIVE on Instagram to present the first release by Floki. Gorilla!

In “Gorilla”, Nico comes alive! He is the Gorilla in the jungle! He has the feeling and the expression for this song. He’s bouncing all over the stage. He’s definitely got the moves! It’s so catchy! And people love it!
Following the release of Gorilla, Nico did an interview with Nico Donvito, an Italian Music Blogger. In this interview, I saw another side of Nico. We hear this young man talk about his music. His place in the music industry. How he got there and all the people who are responsible for his journey.
I heard a, very, intelligent and, responsible young man who has worked hard to get to where he is. He talks about, who he is, where he came from and how he sees his future.
Right out the gate, Nico impressed me with his insight. Nico saw “Gorilla” as a means of escape from where we are in our world today and an expression of where he finds himself in the world. Nico said, “ ‘Gorilla’ has a fresh taste, because in the last few months we have been a bit obliged to heavy thoughts, to stop and reflect on important things, to close ourselves in ourselves. At a certain point the moment comes when you need a beer on the beach with your friends, ‘Gorilla’ is just that, something not at all thick which and, in certain situations, can be essential.”
That’s pretty deep and right on. It was almost as if Nico was saying I wrote this song two years ago, but this was its moment. It’s when it was needed. To say that the ‘Gorilla’ is that moment in time when you need to kick back or as Nico put it when you need a beer on the beach with your friends, yes, that’s exactly what “Gorilla” is. Its’ light and intriguing and it brought us away from all the madness that preceded it. Perhaps, the sign that Ignazio made the day that “Gorilla” was released, that seemed to upset so many people, was nothing more that Ignazio saying: Let’s take the weight of the world and toss it aside. You had your way and now, we’re going to have ours!
One of the things I love about Nico is he is always looking for ways to entertain us! In February, he decided to travel around Bologna with some friends and a mattress. They sat around on the mattress and greeted people as they went by!  Nico said, “I don’t wanna be romantic but every now and then there are certain tangles you hardly imagined. You know those blurry photos that are beautiful just because they’re blurry! Those people you don’t know but who greet you, and you greet them, and then you talk to them! Today I text a friend of mine, Do you have a rope? I need it to tie a mattress to the top of my car.’ He reminded me that I don’t have a car. True, I don’t have a car, so I don’t have a roof!” And that’s Nico’s humor which grabs us and keeps us laughing!

Nico sitting on a mattress

And where is Nico now? In his words, There are days that if I focus, Traffic Lights go green when I want.”
Nico’s new song, “Polline (pollen)” has been released.  Nico says,I wrote almost all of my song in this notebook. ‘Polline’ was born a year ago. This summer this notebook fell into the sea, dried in the sun and ‘Polline’ remains legible.”

Nico's notebook

In a review a writer said: This is a “new piece in the path of the artist produced by Ignazio Boschetto. Nico Arezzo’s ‘Polline’ is the single that marks the return of one of the most talented songwriters of the new generation already the winner of the Festival Show a few years ago.” I couldn’t have said it better myself!
Nico tell us, “This song has been ready for at least a year, in the meantime I have written many other things, I have explored a new musical genre that you will listen to soon and I am evolving but, this piece, I absolutely did not want to abandon it because I am very attached to it.
‘Polline’ is a song to which I am very attached, especially, literally. It’s a piece that comes almost as a challenge. They said to me, ‘Can you talk about a relationship that’s over but, looking back, you can say ‘but it was beautiful’? And so, even though there may be a small void hidden between the lines of the song, thinking that I haven’t lived through that story would make me sadder.”
And how did Nico preview this new song on Instagram? Honey jars! Nico said, “I’m releasing a new track this month. Every day I will add a jar of honey in my fridge with a letter on it, not in order. I start today! Go into my stories, write in the comments the first word you think of.  Try not to guess right away or you will ruin everything for me! Every day a jar a letter! Oddly, though my Italian is very limited, I guessed what it was!

What is the song about?  The answer is in one line of the song!  “They say you can understand a person from what you find in his fridge.” Let’s go to Nico’s fridge and see what he’s really all about!

(Floki Production by Ignazio Boschetto and Michele Torpedine. Polline was produced at Take Away Studios in Modena.) 

Another amazing video! It makes me smile! It makes me laugh! It makes me happy! Nico, everything you do excites me! From day one I knew you would bring a fresh approach to the music industry and I was right. You have such energy and, all your projects are ambitious like you. Your videos present the real you!
Yes, you’re Complicated but, your delivery is always Delightful!

 

Credit to owners of all photos and videos.