Il Volo Plays the State Theatre Tonight, 10/15
In May, 2009, three fresh-faced teenagers, Piero Barone (now 18), Ignazio Boschetto (17), and Gianluca Ginoble (17), appeared on the popular Italian talent show Ti Lascio Una Canzone and dazzled television viewers with their flawless rendition of the Neapolitan standard “O Sole Mio.” The boys decided their group needed a name. IL VOLO means "flight" in Italian. When asked why the boys chose this name they said “the music makes us fly".
Fast forward to August, 2012. Il Volo has just been chosen to open eight shows for the legendary Barbra Streisand. But the Streisand dates, really, are just another peak since Il Volo spread their wings after appearing on that talent show.
In short order, the trio, managed by Michele Torpedine (clients also include Andrea Bocelli and Italian rock star Zucchero) and Oscar nominated singer/producer/composer Tony Renis, signed a worldwide recording contract with Universal Music Group. They also became the first Italian artists to sign with Geffen Records in the U.S.
Their self-titled debut album IL VOLO was recorded in Los Angeles and Rome, as well as at London’s famed Abbey Road Studios; Renis produced it with veteran producer Humberto Gatica (Andrea Bocelli, Josh Groban, and Celine Dion). It showcased the three young singers’ astonishing vocal talent and interpretive gifts within a context of both classic and new compositions: “O Sole Mio,” “Il Mondo,” “E Più Ti Penso” (a medley of Ennio Morricone songs from the soundtracks to Once Upon a Time in America and Malena), “El Reloj” (a brand-new song sung in Spanish), “Smile” (written by Charlie Chaplin for his film Modern Times and later popularized by Nat King Cole), “Notte Stellata/The Swan” (from the well-known musical theme composed by French composer Camille Saint-Saëns), “La Luna Hizo Esto” and “Painfully Beautiful” (both written specially for Il Volo by multi-platinum songwriter Diane Warren), “Per Te” (written by multiple Grammy Award-winning songwriter/producer Walter Afanasieff), “This Time” (a new song written by Michelle Lewis) and “Un Amore Così Grande” (a classic from the late ’70s Italian music tradition).
IL VOLO was released in November 2010 in Italy—where it was certified platinum—and worldwide in 2011. But it has since proven to be just the beginning for Gianluca, Ignazio and Piero.
The boys were invited by Quincy Jones to represent Italy by singing on the charity single “We Are The World: 25 for Haiti”--during which they impressed such superstars as Celine Dion, Josh Groban, and most auspiciously, Barbra Streisand. A few days later they performed during the 60th annual Sanremo Music Festival, a prestigious event attended by such luminaries as Queen Rania of Jordan and popular TV host Antonella Clerici. In the Fall of 2011 they were nominated for two Latin Grammy awards.
In the U.S., Il Volo virtually exploded on the scene following a show-stopping appearance on American Idol: IL VOLO came in at No. 6 on the Billboard Top 200 Charts and has remained a Top Ten CD on Billboard’s Classical Crossover Chart since March 2012. The boys have now appeared on major TV shows including The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, The Today Show, Good Morning America, The Talk, Ellen and Rachel Ray. The threesome also made a surprise appearance on the final episode of the HBO Series Entourage.
In October 2011, in the midst of a hugely successful 17-city US concert tour, Il Volo filmed their first PBS Special at Detroit's famed Opera House. The widely received “Il Volo Takes Flight,” Live from the Detroit Opera House aired this past March and due to its extraordinary success re-aired again in June being shown on PBS outlets nationally over 1,500 times. A live album and DVD “Il Volo Takes Flight--Live From The Detroit Opera House” was released earlier this year.
Now, as they prepare for their North American tour, Il Volo are working on the follow-up to IL VOLO which will be released later this year.
They may be young, but IL VOLO's mission is clear. "We want to share our love for this music with people all over the world, including kids our own age". That they say “would be a dream come true."
The group will play the State Theatre tonight, Monday, October 15 at 8 p.m. Tickets, $90/$75, can be obtained by visiting the State Theatre Box Office, 453 Northampton Street, Easton, by calling 1-800-999-STATE, 610-252-3132 or online at www.statetheatre.org. Fees apply.
For more information, visit www.ilvolomusic.com.