Il Volo (English: The Flight) is an Italian operatic pop trio, consisting of singers: tenors Piero Barone and Ignazio Boschetto, and baritone Gianluca Ginoble. Having won the Sanremo Music Festival 2015, they will represent Italy in the Eurovision Song Contest 2015 in Vienna, Austria.
In 2009, Piero Barone, Ignazio Boschetto and Gianluca Ginoble were among the teens competing in the Italian televised singing competition Ti lascio una canzone, held at the Teatro Ariston in Sanremo and broadcast by Rai 1. During the first episodes, they performed several songs as solo artists. Among the others, Gianluca Ginoble's rendition of "Il mare calmo della sera", originally by Andrea Bocelli, won the first episode of the show, and later came in first place during the final held on 2 May 2009. Director and creator of the show, Roberto Cenci, had the idea to put them together, with the purpose to create a trio similar to The Three Tenors (Plácido Domingo, José Carreras and Luciano Pavarotti). During the fourth episode of the show, they performed together for the first time, singing Neapolitan classic song "'O sole mio". While in Los Angeles, Italian singer-songwriter and music producer Tony Renis, casually discovered their performance through Rai International. Impressed by the trio, he decided to call Cenci to arrange a meeting with them. Since they were under the age of 18, Cenci talked with the singers' families, and they decided to trust Renis' proposal to work with them. Thanks to lawyer Peter Lopez, Renis met with Geffen Records' Jimmy Iovine and Ron Fair, and they offered a recording deal to the group, which allowed them to become the first Italian artist to directly sign with an American recording label. Producer Michele Torpedine started to work with them as a manager.
The group was initially named "I Tre Tenorini", but their name was later changed to "The Tryo". With this name, in 2010 the group participated in the charity single "We Are the World 25 for Haiti", a remake of the 1985 hit song "We Are the World". In February of the same year, they also performed the songs "Granada" and "Un amore così grande" for Queen Rania of Jordan during the 60th Sanremo Music Festival. In late 2010, their name was finally changed into "Il Volo" (English: the flight).
In 2010, Il Volo started working on their first studio album, which was recorded in the Abbey Road Studios in London and produced by Tony Renis and Humberto Gatica. Simply titled Il Volo, the album is mainly composed of covers of international and Italian standards, including "Il mondo", "Un amore così grande", "'O sole mio", "El reloj" and Charlie Chaplin's "Smile", but also features original songs written by Diane Warren and Walter Afanasieff.
Released in Italy on 30 November 2010, it peaked at number 6 on the Italian Albums Chart, and was later certified platinum by the Federation of the Italian Music Industry.
The international edition of the album was released in the United States by Geffen Records on 12 April 2011, and was promoted with a performance during the final three results show of American Idol's tenth season, as well as with appearaces on The Tonight Show, Good Morning America, The Ellen DeGeneres Show and The Early Show. The lead single from the album in the United States was "'O sole mio". During its first week, Il Volo reached the tenth spot of Billboard 200 and topped the Classical Albums chart, with sales of 23,000 copies. The album also entered the top ten in other countries, including Belgium, France, Germany, New Zealand and the Netherlands, and it peaked at number one on the Ö3 Austria Albums Chart.
A Spanish version of the album was released and peaked at number 6 in Mexico, at number 3 on the Billboard Classical Albums chart, at number 4 on the Top Latin Albums chart, and at number 1 on the Latin Pop Albums chart. This version was certified Gold in Mexico by AMPROFON for the sale of 30,000 copies and won an RIAA Latin Gold Award for the sale of 50,000 copies in US.
The trio performed for the TV show The Talk in February 2011 and on October 13, 2011.
On July 31, 2011, the trio performed "’O sole mio" and "This Time" for the President's Star Charity show in Singapore to help raise funds for the handicapped. On September 4, 2011, the trio performed "’O sole mio" and "Smile" for the MDA Labor Day Telethon. On September 11, 2011, the trio made a cameo appearance on the series finale of Entourage.
Il Volo was nominated for two Latin Grammy Awards in Best Pop Album by a Duo or Group with Vocal for Il Volo (Edicion en espanol) and in Best New Artist.
On October 27, 2011, Il Volo performed live at the Detroit Opera House to tape their first concert DVD titled "Il Volo - Takes Flight - Live from the Detroit Opera House". This concert premiered on December 7, 2011, in Detroit (on PBS Channel WTVS) and 1,000 cities across Canada (that receive Detroit's PBS on their cable system).
On November 21, 2011, Il Volo released, only in digital format, their first EP called Christmas Favorites, which contains a duet with Pia Toscano. On the same date, their debut album was re-released in a special edition that also includes the tracks from Christmas Favorites. On December 22, 2011, Il Volo was the closing guest for The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, singing "The Christmas Song".
On February 28, 2012, Il Volo's new CD and DVD, Il Volo - Takes Flight - Live from the Detroit Opera House, was released. This concert was shown on PBS stations across the US and Canada followed by a tour of the countries from August through October.
In October and early November 2012 Il Volo performed in concert with Barbra Streisand. They sang with her the song "Smile", and "Make My Garden Grow", and performed singles "O Sole Mio" and "Un Amore Cosi Grande". On November 19, 2012 Il Volo released their second album, We Are Love (Billboard 200 number 100)
On December 11, 2012 Il Volo performed at the 2012 Nobel Prize Concert in Oslo Norway, with King Harald V in attendance. On April 9, 2013 they released a Spanish version of We Are Love, titled Más Que Amor, which includes an additional duet with Mexican singer Belinda. The album debuted at number 1 on the Billboard Latin Pop Albums and peaked at number 2 on the Billboard Top Latin Albums. Más Que Amor was certified Gold in Mexico and Argentina.
On April 25, 2013, they performed the song "El Triste" at the 2013 Latin Billboard Music Awards as a tribute to singer José José.
On October 26, 2013, they released the international version of Buon Natale - The Christmas Album, which includes some of the most popular American Christmas songs, as well as two songs in Latin, one in Spanish and one in German, and duets with Pia Toscano and Belinda. The album debuted at number 1 on the Billboard Holiday Albums and peaked at number 1 on the Billboard Classical Albums chart. The single "O Holy Night" peaked at number 27 on the Billboard Adult Contemporary chart. In November, a special italian edition was released, including songs "Bianco Natale" and "Astro del ciel". Rolling Stone published on its website a cappella performances of three tracks, "O Holy Night", "White Christmas" and "Santa Claus is Coming to Town".
In February 2014, the trio received two nominations at the 2014 Latin Billboard Music Awards, as Top Latin Albums Artist of the Year, Duo or Group and Latin Pop Albums Artist of the Year, Duo or Group. The awards show took place at the BankUnited Center of Miami in April 24, broadcast live by Telemundo. During the evening Il Volo is awarded as Best Group of the year in Latin Pop Albums category and won El Pulso Social award, as artist who has dominated interactions on social networking sites during the Billboard Awards. The group also presented the Latin Pop Songs artist of the Year, Duo or Group award.
During 2014 the group focused on the preparation of a new album, set to be released in 2015. In June they returned to North America for a series of 15 concerts in United States and Canada, accompanied by a band and a orchestra. The set list traced their career, including the most successful songs of their repertoire, and the tour gets very positive reviews from critics.
In July and September they toured in Italy for first time.
On August 21, 2014, Il Volo are awarded as Dúo or Grupo Favorito in the Premios Tu Mundo. The awards celebrates the latin pop culture in the United States and are broadcast live by Telemundo.
On December 14, 2014, is announced their participation in the 2015 Sanremo Music Festival (February 10-14, 2015), performing the unreleased song Grande amore.
On December 21, 2014, they performed at the traditional Christmas Concert in the Italian Senate, in front of the highest offices of state, accompanied by a choir of children with hearing disabilities who perform the songs with sign language. At the end of the concert, the President of the Republic Giorgio Napolitano and the President of Senate Pietro Grasso praised the group.
On February 14, 2015, they won the competition of the Sanremo Music Festival 2015, winning 39.05% of the total vote over the 2 leading challengers. They now go on to the Eurovision Song Contest 2015 in Vienna Austria from 19-23 May, 2015.
In February the group's win at the Sanremo Music Festival also gave them the option to represent Italy at Eurovision 2015. They accepted this and will represent their country in the Eurovision Song Contest 2015 in Vienna, Austria.
Piero Barone (born 24 June 1993 in Agrigento, Sicily)
Ignazio Boschetto (born 4 October 1994 in Bologna, Emilia Romagna)
Gianluca Ginoble (born 11 February 1995 in Atri, Abruzzo)
Il Volo (2010)
We Are Love (2012)
Buon Natale: The Christmas Album (2013)
Sanremo Grande Amore (2015)