Here I am with the second part of this beautiful interview.
I assure you that you will not be bored.
Enjoy the reading!!
MARA = Come back here. (long applause) You are guys, but you have a great responsibility, because you have immense talent …
GIAN = With this song we also had the opportunity to show the beauties of our country with the Frasassi Caves.
MARA = Yes, there was the video.
GIAN = I also want to say this thing, because for us it was a great honor, to be able to work with maestro Vittorio Storaro, who is a “cinematographer” and not a “director of photography”, which is a small detail.
MARA = What’s the difference, for those who don’t know?
GIAN = There is a big difference. In America they say cinematographer …
MARA = …. three Oscars, he made all the films of Bertolucci (another Italian director who won the Oscar for The Last Emperor), Vittorio Storaro …
GIAN = … exactly three Oscars …. because every time it is a life lesson, not only artistic, but his wisdom has given us wonderful moments …
MARA = Sorry if I interrupt you, Gianluca, but I have a backstage video and I would like to send it and then you all can comment on it.
Let’s watch it together.
(the video of the Frasassi Caves backstage starts)
In the video: Gianluca’s voice = The melodies of the great master Ennio Morricone are the protagonists in this wonderful setting that are the Frasassi Caves.
Ignazio’s voice = Sharing this fantastic place also with maestro Vittorio Storaro was a great emotion. (applause)
MARA = It is so beautiful that it seems unreal, it seems magical.
PIERO = Have you ever been there?
MARA = No, never been.
PIERO = Look, time stops there.
MARA = But where is this place, exactly?
GIAN = Near Genga, in the Marche region.
MARA = Ah, in the Marche.
GIAN = Yes, this place is one hour from my house, I’m near Roseto degli Abruzzi.
MARA = So did you know this place?
GIAN = Yes, I had already been there, because schools often organize trips with pupils to make excursions.
MARA = It’s a magical place, I want to go there.
PIERO = We had the privilege of having the caves just for us and Vittorio Storaro, to shoot the video.
MARA = Illuminated by Vittorio Storaro.
GIAN = Think about the power of Bel Canto, associated with a wonderful place, it is the perfect soundtrack, but then it allows us to join idols, like Vittorio Storaro, or as before, you saw us joking with Woody Allen, it is the prestige of Bel Canto. As you know it all started with Pavarotti, then with Bocelli, so we, humbly, always try to follow in their footsteps, to bring this kind of music higher and higher.
IGNAZIO = I’ll tell you an anecdote. In the caves, we were collaborating with the master Storaro, and he was still trying to get an extra emotion out of us. So when there were our solos, he would say to Piero: “Piero concentrate you, try not to think about anything, as if there were no one, the caves, the emotion …”
GIAN = He (Storaro)was also a director on that occasion, just for us.
IGNAZIO = …. “let the emotion out” …. ok, Piero, does his (solo), Gian does his, it’s up to me and I ask: “Give me some more advice, master …”
MARA = You are giving HIM to the master. (in Italy it is a sign of respect)
IGNAZIO = Absolutely … and he tells me: “Ignazio, forget where you are, it’s just you, the camera and nothing else around.” I followed his advice.
PIERO = He added “…and think of a person dear to you ….”
MARA = Think of a person dear to you?
IGNAZIO = Yes. The playback of the song was over and I cried and I cried for 15 minutes …
PIERO = He burst into tears.
MARA = Who were you thinking of?
IGNAZIO = Your Love is a song that means a lot to us, also because we performed in Sanremo three days after my father’s death, so it means a lot to us.
MARA = The memory!
IGNAZIO = By now, I associate that song with that moment and therefore I was in tears for 15 minutes.
GIAN = The whole album is dedicated to Vito ….
PIERO = … to Ignazio’s father.
On this occasion Ignazio proved to be a great man, because three days before our performance in Sanremo, we received this terrible news by phone, and we all expected a NO, from Ignazio, we thought we would stay at home. Instead he, as a great professional, arrived in Sanremo, sang, did his duty. He has my highest esteem. ❤(appaluse)
MARA = Who knows how you were inside, love.
IGNAZIO = I think that the greatest happiness of a parent is to see their children happy.
GIAN = There was a backstage part that I would like to tell and that moved us all.
During the rehearsals Fiorello (co-host of Sanremo), approached Ignazio and hugged him for three minutes, they hugged tightly, I’m telling you, because unfortunately he also experienced the same situation ….. and by the way we say goodbye to the great Fiorello, hello Fiore !!
MARA = (turning to Ignazio) Were you far away, when your dad passed?
IGNAZIO = I was in Bologna, we were, there. Before, we talked about the pandemic, and the lockdown, there are positive sides, I was lucky enough to spend a year and a half with my whole family, and that’s what we hope all the young people, all the boys of our age, have done – have the opportunity to spend time with their families, and to understand how important their support is.
MARA = I think so.
PIERO = But in these years…. we have been together for 13 years …
IGNAZIO = We are together, that is, we work together ….
MARA = But there would be nothing wrong, Ignazio ... (being together can be meant sentimentally)
PIERO = No, no, we are together
IGNAZIO = Of bad, nothing, but Piero, it’s not that I like him so much. 😁
MARA = Are the two of them engaged? (Piero and Gianluca). About you (Ignazio) we learned that you have a girlfriend in Brazil …
GIAN = The two of them who ??
MARA = Not the two of you together, although there would be nothing wrong with that.
GIAN = No but imagine, there would be nothing wrong …
MARA = Do you, your fiancée, have it?
GIAN = Yes, yes, I do.
MARA = You have her! And you Piero?
PIERO = No, I …
GIAN = Piero no.
MARA = Is he single?
GIAN = Piero is single, the only single, that’s right.
MARA = He is in love with Bellucci, he is waiting for Bellucci.
IGNAZIO = Morricone was one of the most beautiful projects we have ever thought …
MARA = Do you want to change the subject?
IGNAZIO = Is it understood ?? 😁
MARA = You are smart, eh !!! But when you can, with aunt !!! (she means that the aunt, that is Mara, discovers the smart ones)
IGNAZIO = (He gets up and sings to Mara, hugging her) “I’ll take you and I’ll take you away.” (applause)
MARA = Come on, another film I loved is Sacco and Vanzetti, directed by the great Giuliano Montaldo, starring Riccardo Cucciolla and GianMaria Volontè.
PIERO = For this piece, we studied a lot, because we didn’t know so many things ….
MARA = Wonderful movie.
PIERO = The story is truly poignant, because unfortunately there is injustice.
MARA = Exactly. Great movie.
GIAN = We are here, eh !!
PIERO = I was telling her about Sacco and Vanzetti …
IGNAZIO = We felt a little lonely.
MARA = Here he is (Piero), I brought him to you.
PIERO = This song is called: HERE’S TO YOU. (applause, here’s to you begins)
(applause and standing ovation at the end)
MARA = Well, you wonderful ones! I just want to say that this is an important film, an important theme, it is the story of two Italians, two emigrants who were unjustly condemned, and we at this moment want to greet all our compatriots who cannot be here.
I + P = Absolutely.
GIAN = And it is also nice to remember that soon we will be on tour, from March in the United States, we start in RCMH on March 4th, and then we will reach many people who have been waiting for us for two years since the last tour that unfortunately we had to stop due to the Covid.
MARA = So you will reach our compatriots, and not only !! But then I will also say all the dates.
Let’s move on because there is another beautiful song.
PIERO = There are many (dates)
MARA = Yes, a lot.
PIERO = More than 100 concerts in six months.
MARA = But when are you leaving?
PIERO = March 4th …
MARA = And are you coming back?
PIERO = In December
MARA = Next year (2022)
PIERO = Yes, and we will sing in Italy, we will do concerts in the summer and concerts in the winter.
MARA = How long are you away?
PIERO = From March to December no stop, only 7-8 days in July
MARA = Are you going back to Italy?
PIERO = Yes, at home.
MARA = Love !!
GIAN = At least, a little sun, a tan, otherwise we will be pale, tired, with travel …..
MARA = Let’s go on, now they make you listen to another beautiful song, music ….
PIERO = What is it?
MARA = SE TELEFONANDO
IGNAZIO = Another of my favorites.
MARA = I like it a lot too.
PIERO = Do you know how it was born?
MARA = Maurizio Costanzo (he wrote the words)
PIERO = Yes, but Ennio Morricone was at the post office paying a fine, a bill, I don’t know what it was, he heard the sound of the ambulance, the siren of the ambulance “ta-ta …. se telefonando” and from there makes you understand the genius of the master Morricone.
MARA = What a beautiful song.
PIERO = Magnificent.
MARA = Why him, great musician, great author, but then this is a song that everyone can sing, in truth.
IGNAZIO = Absolutely. But then the genius of the master Morricone was that he was inspired by silence, for him silence in his works was fundamental …
PIERO = Determinant
IGNAZIO = I like to compose, and sometimes, removing is more difficult than adding.
MARA = It’s true.
IGNAZIO = The essential is something difficult to achieve. It can only be reached by those who are geniuses, like the maestro Morricone.
MARA = How wise have you become, aunt’s love. (she hugs Ignazio)
IGNAZIO = Mamma mia, I’m getting emotional!
MARA = Come on, come on, come on, SE TELEFONANDO, Il Volo!! (starts Se Telefonando)
(applause and standing ovation at the end)
MARA = IL Volo, on Domenica IN, which makes us spend the wonderful Boxing Day !!
Good, good guys, good, good guys (she applauds the guys).
Now I’m sending something with you, from here, from this position. Last year was December 25, 2020, exactly one year ago, and where were you? In St. Peter’s Square ..
P + G + I = Yes, St. Peter’s Square.
MARA = With ???
PIERO = Nobody, there was nobody. Ours is a dream job, we are dreamers and we saw that surreal situation, lockdown, at home at ten, and we wanted to wish the whole country a Merry Christmas from there. We got organized, with the director of RAI1.
MARA = Stefano Coletta.
IGNAZIO = Let us wish him well for Santo Stefano.
G + P + I + M = Greetings director !!
PIERO = And so from there, we made these four songs, to wish a Merry Christmas, with St. Peter’s Square completely empty.
MARA = Let’s see it then. (start the video of Merry Christmas from San Pietro 2020)
In the video: Gian = On this very special day, in which, even if we are close, we are forced to stay away, we wanted to find a way to wish you a Merry Christmas.
Ignazio = With music, in this extraordinary square.
PIERO = The hope is that Christmas, with its magic, can bring a smile to your homes, and warm your hearts.
MARA = How beautiful !! It’s beautiful, I think you have performed everywhere, but I think this was an emotion …… (addressed to Piero) at one in the morning did you tell me?
IGNAZIO = In fact there was still a curfew, so thanks to the Municipality of Rome, and the Vatican who gave us permission to be able to register it. So as not to create a crowd, we did it after curfew, we finished at 1am.
I want take this opportunity to reiterate that the mind that thinks these things is Michele Torpedine, who has all these fantastic ideas.
MARA = That we say hello to Michele (she blows a kiss), where is Michele? It should be around here!
PIERO = Do you think that Luciano Pavarotti called him (Torpedine) Great Boss, and he too (Ignazio), jokingly also called him Great Boss.
I’ve never done, it but I told him: “The day you make us sing in front of Pope Francis, I’ll call you Big Boss”, and now I have to!
GIAN = Behind every singer, there are people who allow them to be able to fully express their art, surely he is the person …..
PIERO = Can you turn the camera? He is there, behind …(Michele is nearby)
MARA = No look, let’s do one thing: “Come here, Michele, we’re talking about you” (applause)
PIERO = Great Michele.
MARA = (drags Torpedine on stage). Sorry, they were talking about you.
MT = You know that these things embarrass me, I’m not used to it.
MARA = Come on. Listen, we are almost at the end of this beautiful segment, I don’t know how to thank you.
How do you handle these boys, Torpedine?
MT = How do you manage three dynamites like this, they go it alone, just say yes or no to things.
MARA = Now you all go, go around the world for months …
MT = Around the world, we hope that everything goes well with Covid.
MARA = We hope, we hope so.
IGNAZIO = We thought we would leave you with a Christmas song, since they told us that Christmas songs are sung until the Epiphany.
MARA = Come on, the witch is here. (herself)
PIERO = White Christmas.
MARA = White Christmas, Il Volo, and I take Michele away. (White Christmas song begins)
Thanks guys, (applause), thanks, thanks. Happy New Year!
IGNAZIO = We want to thank you.
MARA = Thanks to you.
IGNAZIO = We wanted to congratulate you for the new year.
PIERO = We never had the opportunity to spend all this time together, you are really human !!
GIAN = Thanks for believing in us.
MARA = You gave me a great gift, guys.
IGNAZIO = And you gave us a great gift, because talking about each other, is not always easy.
GIAN = Best wishes to you too who are following us, hoping that it will be a 2022 of normality.
IGNAZIO = We wish you to collect all the most beautiful, unthinkable and imaginary fruits, because “nothing is impossible”.
MARA = And it’s true !!
GIAN = He is also international, him.
PIERO = Only optimism !!
MARA = Come on guys, but see you, you go around the world …
PIERO = See you in concert in Italy …
MARA = At the Arena ??
PIERO = In June at the Verona Arena and Taormina …
MARA = And so, see you in March. They go and then they come back: Il Volo !!!
I have no words after this beautiful interview, it was long, but not boring at all.
I believe that when our young men open their hearts, we only know of good feelings.
This is also what we like about them, their way of being, unites us and brings us closer and closer to their human side, they are not only excellent artists, there is much more.
Back in October 2020, the guys held a press conference with the Mayor of Rome and set the wheels in motion for a phenomenal project the Tribute to Ennio Morricone! As you know the event was supposed to take place in Piazza Pio XII in the shadow of St. Peter’s Basilica. Due to the pandemic the venue had to be changed and the one million people who might have attended the free concert, were disappointed but, as always, the guys came through and on June 5, 2021, they held the performance of a lifetime at the ancient Arena of Verona! Who will ever forget it!
So how did the year go by so fast? Let’s start at the beginning, the press conference!
This press conference was about a very ambitious project which included the genius of Il Volo and the music of Ennio Morricone. These four men have done extraordinary things in the music industry.
So, what did the guys have to say about this event?
Gianluca said:“The great maestro Morricone was a source of inspiration for us, we also got to know him and work with him, especially in the studio, when we were children of 14 and 15 years old and were recording our first album. It is a source of pride and, perhaps, I allow myself to say that he is the greatest composer of the twentieth century, so we know that this project, this tribute, requires a great responsibility.
We will work hard because this is also the way to bring our musical heritage around the world, but above all, our culture, because he has made millions of people dream all over the world with his soundtracks and of course our goal has always been to bring and be ambassadors of bel canto all over the world, but not with presumption, with great pride and with the desire to be able to make this music known even to the youngest.”
Piero said: “When we presented this project to other countries, North America, South America, Japan and many European countries, there was great enthusiasm on their part, because, as you well know, a couple of years ago we did a concert-event and the film was shown on American TV, and our goal is to convey Italian beauty with the music that surrounds us. In this event we are above all enthusiastic about the positive feedback from those who have collaborated, with Maestro Morricone, in recent years, such as the Sinfonietta Orchestra, which has always played with the Maestro, so we are talking to them. We are excited and delighted that there is this interest on their part.
Ignazio was asked “as your colleagues have already mentioned, in the past you have also had close relationships with the teacher.”
Ignazio said: Yes, they have already said everything but, I’ll put the icing on the cake… It was in 2011, when we had the luck, the pleasure and the honor of singing “E Piu Ti Penso” which is a song that was part of our first album. We sang in Piazza del Popolo, in Rome, and we have this beautiful memory… We were young and at our age we had the experience of sharing the stage with one of the greatest composers in history, with greater tranquility.
The Mayor of Rome, Virginia Raggi, welcomed the guys with these words:
“It is a special moment. Let me greet three guys who are internationally renowned, with extraordinary voices and who bring bel canto all over the world and allow traditions to be kept alive.
Today we present a great event that will take place on June 5th, 2021, a tribute to Ennio Morricone. It will be a free concert of the highest level, the beginning of a series of concerts, because we need fixed appointments that remind us of what we are able to do. This event is meant to be the beginning. It is a strong signal.
This is meant to be a tribute at a time when we need unity. Thanks to the guys and all those who are working on this great event.”
But it didn’t stop there, the guys let us know there was a great recording project in the works in conjunction with this event. Il Volo’s Tribute to Ennio Morricone.
And the guys had also let us know that as part of the event and the new album there would be a dedicated tour as soon as conditions allow it!
Bringing music back!
The guys worked endlessly to bring back the music industry. They started at the Seat Music Awards. It was the first time they were on stage since the beginning of the pandemic when they had to cancel their last three concerts and go home.
Let’s remember their message of hope that evening. Piero said: “Now, the world is getting ready to start again! Now the moment has arrived to raise the curtain! Now, we will turn on the music!”
This is the theme that reoccurred and, it will continue until music comes back to the arenas and stages around the world. The stages that are missing our guys and their wonderful concerts.
It says we may have to perform under these new world conditions, but we don’t have to change who we are or why we’re here. In the ancient Arena of Verona, they looked to the past while following the path to the future. From their first note the whole arena lit up. They were back! Music had returned to the Arena!
Since the guys left their homes after the quarantine, they have worked tirelessly to bring back the music industry. This was an enormous undertaking. The genius of these three young men has brought us to this place in history! It’s too bad that this great event never took place at Piazza Pio XII. Perhaps someday after the pandemic, the guys will think about another concert to take place at Piazza Pio XII with St. Peter’s Basilica as the backdrop for their event. A complete scenography will be created with this perfect background. It will certainly be an extraordinary event.
So, what happened next!
In a recent appearance on Verissimo, Sylvia Toffanin asked the guys about the quarantine and how it changed their lives. Their answers gave us a deep look into who they are, where they came from and their beautiful values. It showed us brothers who love each other and care for one another. It showed us a love that many real brothers don’t share! Let’s listen to a part of the interview….
Silvia: So, how are you guys doing? I see you are very well.
Piero: We are very well, we are very happy with this project, we have been stuck at home for almost two years, but our creativity has helped us a lot.
Silvia: It didn’t stop.
Piero: I must say that time has been our best friend, because we gave our best, we had more time to try to take care of every aspect of this project.
Silvia: And, also to spend a little time with your families, to live a little that second adolescence that you did not live, because you left home when you were little, right Gianluca.
Gianluca: Yes, then we tried not to live this period passively and to stimulate our creativity. We have been with our families more. Sometimes you also need to have a spirit of adaptation and accept reality when there is no alternative, so it was a very difficult time for everyone. I remember that you of Verissimo, you had the brilliant idea of producing “Imagine” by John Lennon in a video, with many singers playing and singing from home, and certainly this allowed us to be in close contact with the public and we wanted to thank you for it.
Silvia: Let’s go back, because you left for the United States before Covid, to celebrate your 10 years of career and you did a tour in the United States, a beautiful tour, where Placido Domingo also came, Gloria Estefan, in short, great artists. Ignazio, how did you experience that embrace of the American crowd?
Ignazio: Many ask us: But you have no fear, fear of the public, you know, the emotion, it’s all adrenaline, it’s really inexplicable and really, as I said before, we miss it, we love it so much and we can’t wait till next year because it finally starts again.
Silvia: But you were there then at a certain point, it happens that in Italy, Gianluca, then arrives Covid and you were in contact with your families, but in the United States everything was pretty quiet.
Gianluca: Yes, we interrupted the festivities somehow, because in the United States we were there until the first week of March and we returned on the 13th, we canceled the concerts in Las Vegas and San Francisco and we escaped on the last plane, we were more than 30 people traveling, with our crew, the musicians, and therefore we risked staying there for another 2-3 weeks, because then, when we returned we were in full lockdown for a week (in Italy).
Silvia: But what was it like to return home and experience that family dimension, after you have spent your life and adolescence around in concerts. How was it to go home with your mother, with the loved ones, to do nothing.
Ignazio: Above all, do nothing.
Silvia: Even that, do nothing, boredom.
Piero: It was a kind of “in search of lost time”, this immersion in memories, clearly the birthplace, the family, everyone. It’s nice to relive and remember where we come from, because maybe everyday life sometimes makes us forget this.
And that was the strength perhaps, to feel that inner balance that only your loved ones give you, the people close to you, and from there, we gave life to a new project, and the distance …, because we talked only by telephone with video calls, they could not stay in contact …
Ignazio: It was nice …
Silvia: Was it nice? What did you like?
Ignazio: To hear them by phone I say, we are always together ….
Silvia: … the fact that you didn’t see them for a while
Piero: I can say that the distance has strengthened our friendship.
Gianluca: We have had a really abnormal lifestyle for 12 years. You know it all started when we were children, so (in Covid time) we tried to be optimistic about it, without feeling sorry for ourselves, because this certainly doesn’t help, and we took all the positive things that unfortunately brought us this tragedy that it touched us all. It was a period that also helped us to discover ourselves a little.
Silvia: And your grandfather? How are you?
Gianluca: Well, I must say that I have a wonderful relationship with him, and he is the only grandfather I have, which is my grandfather Ernesto, whom I greet, naturally. He is very proud of me, one of the indelible memories that I will always carry with me, in 2012, when we were on tour with Barbra Streisand, grandfather came to New York and saw me sing with Barbra Streisand, so he was there.
Ignazio: A Broccolin (Italian dialect for Brooklyn)
Gianluca: Exactly, and this is therefore important, a message to be sent also to young people who often neglect their loved ones, because when you are young, you think you have all the time available, but time runs inexorably, so if at a youthful age you have this awareness, it allows us to live the moments more intensely, especially with the family, where everything started from there, and it is the people who will never betray you.
Silvia: And you know this well, Ignazio, that you have a lot of personal satisfaction, but despite your very young age, you have had to face the loss of your beloved father.
Ignazio: Absolutely. Look, I also talked to other people who have lost a parent early, or even late, because in the end, you can be any age, it can pass as long as you want, but it is always early, you are never ready to accept a loss. But I must say that the fact that we have traveled a lot, the fact that we were on the other side of the world, and I knew that my father was always somewhere, even today that he is not there, it seems to me that he is always somewhere, therefore, it is as if I have not lost him. Because I think that I have not lost my father, my father is always with me here, I like to think like this and that’s okay.
Silvia: He was very proud of you, I guess.
Ignazio: Absolutely, very proud. But he was the kind of person who couldn’t express emotions, so he was very proud but, he was always ….
Gianluca: But with a look he made us understand everything.
Ignazio: Yes, yes, he yes. Look it was my father, but it was as if he was the father of all three, as their parents are as if they were my parents, because in any case we have been sharing everything for many years.
Piero: When we first met. we were 14, so to leave Italy, we had to be accompanied by our parents, we were minors, so for 5-6 years and then even at the age of 18, they continued to travel with us, so we know his father very well, we know what he is talking about because we have lived a lot of time with them.
Silvia: And how was being next to him (Ignazio) on such a sad occasion, you who are a family, Piero on that occasion, as brothers, how did you feel too?
Piero: Ignazio proved to be a MAN, extremely strong, because three days after the loss of Vito, we were guests at the Sanremo festival and, we all expected him not to come. He arrived with a smile and, we were blown away by his way of dealing with this moment, unprecedented to us. You taught us so much Ignazio and in this I have to thank you, he is a strong man and, we love him so much.
Ignazio: I love you too.
Piero: It’s the truth……I always tell you!
Gianluca: Me too, I’m here too.
Ignazio: Sure! (he and Gian take hands)
Ignazio: There was not a single moment that I thought not to do it (refers to Sanremo), because in any case parents do anything for their children, sometimes it is not so, but we were lucky that our parents gave us everything and so I thought that, for all the sacrifices that he (Vito) and my mother have made to get me to where I am today, I thought he would never let me (not to do Sanremo), and so I did it for him too.
So, it seems the quarantine made the guys become closer. It made them feel a new feeling. Since they came together 12 years ago, they were never separated except for short periods of time between tours and commitments. They finally understood what it meant to pick up a phone and talk to one another. Something we take for granted they never had the opportunity to do. They spent precious time with their families, something they haven’t done since they were teenagers. This above all was very important to Ignazio because he got to spend precious time with his dad. And look at how proud the guys were of Ignazio and the way he made such an extraordinary decision to go to Sanremo because he knew his father would want him to be there. It was his way of thanking his parents for all the sacrifices they made for him. He certainly is a very strong man and a good example for all of us but especially for young people. These truly are exceptional young men.
And finally, they had the freedom of mind and body to explore new projects. And to devote major time to the project at hand, the Morricone project.
So, let’s get back to the present day!
Let me start by saying I read a fantastic article in La Voce di New York by Lisa Bernardini about Michele Torpedine. If you get a chance read it. Michele is such an interesting man. In the article they made many references to Michele’s autobiography “Ricominico Dai Tre” (I start again from the Three) which tells a true and since story about this man. If you can read Italian, I recommend you read this book. It is fantastic! I read it in two days. What Michele reveals is after 40 years in the business, he finally found what he was looking for all his life. A certain truth a fresh and sincere look at the industry which he had come to believe was very cruel and an ungrateful lot, but, as he reveals, every now and then, someone comes along and turns your whole world upside down and you realize you have finally found truth and sincerity. That someone was in fact three someone’s, Il Volo. Here are a few questions Michele was asked about the guys…
Lisa: Today the whole world loves Il Volo.
Michele: How can you not love them? They are pleasant for families, young people, the elderly… for everyone. They are physically beautiful, then they know how to dance, play and move perfectly on stage. With them the show is engaging. These three guys currently represent the best of “Made in Italy” the good one, “clean” in mold.
Lisa: Yet some critics accuse them of being a mere commercial operation studied at the table. What do you answer?
Michele: Initially, when they were boys, you could actually think of a “disposable” operation. What happened in their case was, as they grew up, they became really good. Today they are real artists of international caliber. You can’t find such a group anywhere else in the world.
Lisa: Where will Piero, Ignazio and Gianluca arrive, in your opinion?
Michele: If you think they’re only 25 years old and have contracts all over the world, I always tell them that the best is yet to come.
And how right you are Michele! That certainly sums up where our guys are today.
The Morricone project has become more than just a project it has become a new reality for the guys. It brought them to a new place in their careers. It’s like they are on the fast track and can’t slow down. Every day brings another event another addition to the project. It’s like 2009 all over again except this time the guys are in the driver’s seat.Their careers are exploding! This project has opened so many doors! With the release of the new album, “Il Volo Sings Morricone” and the World Tour, “Il Volo Sings Morricone and more,” at their doorstep it seems they will certainly be busy for the next two years but, where else is this leading them? I would like to think they will be spending more time in America. This direction certainly seems to be the one they are going in. Perhaps a Grammy or an Academy Award? These are the doors that I see opening for them. The American people truly love Il Volo and, they would love to see them more on American TV shows. But I can also envision them doing some of their own productions! Because of their collaboration over the last 12 years, the guys have come to a point where they can write and compose together in a way that other performers can’t. The Morricone project proved that! Their Bel canto is unique to them but, they have proven they can take the work of a genius like Morricone and put their mark, their genius on it to present a new feeling in music. Almost looking back while looking forward. This is the genius of Il Volo.
The future for our guys is very bright. They are standing “On the Threshold of Success” for the second time in their lives. It seems almost impossible to conceive but, they have a phenomenal career and they are starting a whole new career one which will present a whole new way of looking at music!
Join me next week as I go back Through the Fields of My Mind and open the door to a new adventure!
We’ve recently had so many intriguing posts about the Verona concert, the latest Il Volo TV interview, and the history of Il Volo, that I took a short break from writing and translating (while I worked at my day job)! In any case, Flight Crew still wanted you to get the translation of an Il Volo interview article that appeared in Famiglia Cristiana magazine right before the Verona concert.
The Famiglia Cristiana article pursued some of the things many other interviewers have already asked the guys: their memories, their feelings about returning to the stage, upcoming recordings. But this article touched on one or two things that most of the media don’t usually get Il Volo to talk about: supporting each other during crises, their faith, prayer, marriage, starting a family. See if you agree with me that overall, Ignazio said the least, but revealed the most.
The Cover Story Title is “Exclusive: Il Volo at the Arena of Verona in Concert for Morricone. Once Again in Front of the Public.”The cover quote from the guys is“Our Strength? It’s Our Friendship and Our Faith.”
This posting will be a little different than my previous ones, because I am giving you the actual magazine pages, so we can enjoy the whole thing together. I put the translation of the call-out boxes into our own call-out boxes. In case some of the magazine pages aren’t super sharp, we have also embedded some of the original shots here and there for you to enjoy.
(Each image in this post can be clicked on to view a larger version.)
As you can see below, the inside headline, besides repeating the cover, adds: “The Three Singers of Il Volo are the Stars of a Concert in Honor of Ennio Morricone, Whom We Lost One Year Ago.
When I first saw this article, it added to my impression that the Verona concert was dedicated to more different people than any other show I’ve ever heard. Daniela’s and my translations of the stage talk from the concert over the past month showed that in addition to the show being dedicated to the memory of Maestro Ennio Morricone, Ignazio dedicated the concert to those we lost during the pandemic, and Piero dedicated it to Ignazio’s late father Vito. Now, at the bottom of this magazine article, we see Gianluca’s statement “I’m dedicating this show to my grandfather Ernesto who recovered from the [Corona] virus. It’s he who helped me discover the westerns of Sergio Leone.”
Sergio Leone, as you probably know is the Italian film director whose “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly” featured Maestro Morricone’s music, and like the other two films in that trilogy, A Fistful of Dollars and For a Few Dollars More, added up to help make Clint Eastwood a star. Leone also directed the “Once Upon a Time” series of western films. Given Leone’s Italia origins, he is the founder of the style that came to be called “Spaghetti Westerns.”
So, without further ado, here’s the translation of the article by Eugenio Arcidiacono. [Based on his name, he may actually be an archdeacon].
“The interview takes place remotely, with the three Il Volo guys linked by video from their homes. But on June 5 will put them back together again for the first big concert in Italy with the public (a live audience) since the start of the pandemic: 6 thousand people will listen to them in the Arena di Verona during their tribute to Ennio Morricone one year after his loss (and the lucky ticketholders will be allowed to return home later than the curfew hour). Many more are those who will follow them on TV, live on RAI1 and in other countries of the world, from the United States to Japan. A great challenge after a year and a half of inactivity for Piero Barone, Gianluca Ginoble and Ignazio Boschetto.“
“We’re only thinking about one thing: finally, we get to sing. We couldn’t stand it anymore!” exclaims Piero. “We prepared for months, partly because for us it’s a totally new repertoire, with the exception of Il Più Ti Penso, a song that was constructed by blending themes from Once Upon a Time in America and from Malèna, which we included in our first album.
EA: Did any of the other tracks have lyrics written purposely for you?
Ignazio: “No, they’ve already been performed with lyrics. The only “gem” is Ecstasy of Gold from the Good the Bad and the Ugly: the Morricone family gave it lyrics, so it was a debut performance.
Gianluca: “There have been so many tributes to Morricone, but this will be the very first time for a tribute done by a male group. A tribute that will be translated to a CD that will come out after the summer. Andrea Morricone came to us in the recording studio and will be a guest on the stage to conduct some of his father’s music.”
EA: You’ve been conducted by Ennio Morricone in concert in the Piazza Del Popolo in Rome in 2011. You weren’t even 20 years old. What memories do you have?
Gianluca: “It’s true, we return to being children when we think of him. We were really naïve. I remember that during the general rehearsals with a one-hundred-piece orchestra he gave me the cue to start singing, but I didn’t start. Morricone turned to me [for not starting], and then I said to him, “So you give me the start cue?’ I saw the first violinist turn white [with shock] because I addressed the maestro as “tu” [the familiar/intimate form of you, which is not supposed to be used to conductors and music directors]. But he just smiled at me and said to me ‘Guys, don’t worry about it. I’ll deal with it.’”
EA: What is the first film with his music that you saw?
Piero: “Nuovo Cinema Paradiso. As a real Sicilian I recognized myself in that little boy who wanted to get away from his homeland to find his own way, and who listened to the adult he was most attached to, who counseled him to not get trapped by nostalgia. I’ve only cried a few times in my life, but when I saw it and heard that poignant music, I melted like a popsicle.”
Piero stops, and begins to hum the theme song from Nuovo Cinema Paradiso. “Who knows these notes? With our concert we want to make our audience take a dip into their past, rediscovering the emotions they experienced the first time they saw these films.”
Gianluca: “I, on the other hand, am fond of westerns, because I watched them with my Grandfather Ernesto, whom I’m extremely attached to. When I let him hear The Good, the Bad and the Ugly sung by us, he got very excited. I dedicate the concert and the CD to him, because at 87 years old he became sick with COVID and took a month in the hospital to recover. We were very scared, but in the end, he made it.”
EA: The concert was originally expected to be in St. Peter’s Square, but instead became the season opener in the Arena of Verona.
Piero: “We thought of St. Peter’s Square because Morricone was from Rome, but they didn’t have the conditions to guarantee [everyone’s] safety there. At the Arena of Verona, on the other hand, these conditions were present and it’s as magical a place as any, and recognized all over the world. But we still want to return to St. Peter’s Square as soon as possible.”
EA: Morricone has also composed musical scores thick with spirituality. Will you also perform one of those?
Gianluca: “In Fantasy, a track based on the theme of Gabriel’s Oboe, from the film Mission, one of the most mystical melodies ever composed by the master, accompanied by words like “In fantasy exists a warm wind which blows over the cities, like a friend. I dream of souls that are forever free.”
EA: As ambassadors of Italian music to the world, what do you think about Maneskin’s victory at the Eurofestival?
Piero: “We’re very happy. They are young people with great personality who present an “unpublished” side of Italian music to the outside: rock.”
Gianluca: “They do a completely different genre than ours, but we like them. We don’t listen to lyric music from morning to night. I grew up with David Bowie and Elton John.”
EA: In these months of forced inactivity, how has the relationship among you been, especially as friends?
Piero: “We got to know each other better. We talked a great deal, not just about music; and above all, we learned how to listen to each other.”
EA: How do you feel about those three child prodigies who in 2009 appeared on Ti Lascio Una Canzone?
Piero: Much tenderness, but also pride. We have been fortunate but also good at not getting sucked into the most ephemeral, fleeting parts of show business. We have managed not to lose contact with reality, because we have always remained anchored to our families.
EA: All three of you are believers and practicing [Catholics]. What reflections have sustained you in these times we’re living in?
Ignazio: “Like Piero said, this pandemic has made us grow as persons, because we have held each other up in difficult times, like the death of my father and the illness of Gianluca’s grandfather. But our faith has been fundamental in helping us. Prayer, in particular, has proven its power.”
EA: After the Arena of Verona, you won’t be doing concerts [in Italy] for the rest of the year. You can take advantage of this to start having your families.
Gianluca: “I’m still such a kid, that I can’t imagine myself as a father.”
Piero: “For sure, the first of us to get married will be Ignazio.”
Ignazio: “Yes, it’s true that I have always dreamed of a wife and children. With the job I do it’s not easy. But I’ve been working on it…”
Credit to Famiglia Cristiana and owners of all photos.
“Live music restarts from the Arena, we are ready to rekindle the amphitheater”
At work to restart, and to ensure that the restart is, on an international level, made in Verona. More precisely, starting from the Arena, temple and symbol of music under the stars all over the world.
The effort is to recover all the shows that could not be staged last season, in the fundamental hope of having an Arena with a capacity of 6 thousand people (usually about 20 thousand people).
“The opening of the season in the Arena, which could also be the first live after the worldwide lockdown, will be entrusted to Volo,which on June 5 will be on the Arena stage with a tribute to Morricone: but in a few days on this we will be able to more precise”.
And so here we are, the great live concerts start again and the first will be entrusted to Il Volo.
Certainly a pity that the concert cannot be held in Rome in the splendid square in front of St. Peter’s Square, but remember that that square has no limits for people and therefore it was impossible, during this persistence of the pandemic, to make the necessary checks and limitations of people.
In the Arena in Verona, the capacity has been significantly reduced. The Arena has numerous entrances, from which people, strictly controlled, will be able to access without problems, and the streets surrounding the Arena are very large spaces that allow the flow at the end of the concert.
I have read that even for orchestral players there will be different entrances from singers.
Certainly there will not be the physical contacts we are used to, and seeing the Arena with 5/6 thousand people will be disappointing. There will certainly not be the warm embrace of the audience, but we must be grateful that all this can be done.
Certainly the event, albeit in a large environment like the Arena, will be resized, compared to what was planned for Rome, but at least now we are sure that the concert will take place and there will also be the other two concerts in 2020 moved to 29 and August 30, 2021.
I am very excited, because Verona is practically very close to Brescia, where I live and therefore, even easier for me to reach.
Now we will have to understand how people will be able to book for the event.
And so I will keep you informed about the next news, and, as the Il Volo page published: “Molto presto!” (Very soon) !
Credit to owners of all photos.
Come in and share the love of life, friends and Il Volo!