Since his Milan adventures earlier this summer at La Scala for Roméo et Juliette left us wanting more of the Italian tenor, we caught up with Vittorio Grigolo in a quick chat about his summer plans.
Frankly, we're in good company -- we swapped Grigolo anecdotes with Pucci-robed opera doyenne Marta Marzotto at a summer cocktail on Corso Venezia and saw Giorgio Armani give the singer a congratulatory hug backstage after his last La Scala Romeo et Juliette performance.
If the lazy summer days have caught up to you, click the link below for the English translation!
When young Italian tenor Vittorio Grigolo was in Milan last month during the Men's Fashion Shows, he was indistinguishable from the male models that cruised the city's downtown streets between catwalk shows with his Arezzo good looks. He had been in town to sing six replications of Charles Gounod's Roméo et Juliette at Teatro alla Scala, drawing many of Milan's opera aficionados to the theater -- including Giorgio Armani who came to the last show and congratulated the singer backstage with a big hug. After the success of the run, he's looking ahead to his next big project and shared his thoughts on the synthesis of opera fashion.
Fashion, style, and opera -- there's a great synthesis in Italy – not so much elsewhere. While you were in Milan singing Gounod’s Romeo et Juliette at La Scala, you checked out Giorgio Armani's runway show during Men’s Fashion Week. What was that all about?
“I always wanted to go to a fashion show because opera is fashion and glamour and that’s why we're trying to involve these important figures of Italian fashion -- Giorgio Armani, Versace, Gianfranco Ferré, Missoni, Ferragamo, Roberto Cavalli. The Italian style is part of my culture just like for these Italian designers who should let people dream about opera through their design. Why shouldn’t we use the beauty of opera's costumes for fashion?”
“After the singing, the first thing that I think of when I'm doing a new production is the fit of my costume. If I don't feel comfortable in my costume, I can't sing the way I want to. Mario Del Monaco for example used to draw his own costumes. He had his own ideas and style. A singer who has a strong personality and character also needs a certain kind of style. He can't wear everyone's style. So I think there's a very profound relationship between fashion and opera. “
“Opera and fashion are linked to me because there's so much beauty in both art forms. Beauty always exists in art.”
What’s up with Vittorio Grigolo this summer?
“I’m getting ready to launch my new album! It's incredible -- it exits in September. We have the saying: ‘Errare è umano, perseverare è diabolico’ - with this album, we've preserved. I recorded it with Orchestra del Teatro Regio di Parma and it was their first album and I had a great affinity with the conductor, Piergiorgio Morandi. The beauty of this album was to put together a lot of different feelings and emotions by different arias from the 20th century.”
“Italy was made by values that we don't see so much anymore and there's nostalgia for that. I think to the past stories when my grandfather was bicycling and he saw this beautiful girl which later became his wife -- my grandmother. He put her hand in his hand, said something magical, and he married her. This doesn't happen anymore -- lives are so complicated and everyone wants more and more.”
“To me, the album is something I wanted to sing with my feelings, my emotions, and my life experiences. Because when people come to the opera house to hear me sing, I'm performing a character, and there's no Vittorio. It's me, but I'm just a filter. I put my life experiences into the character, of course, but there’s already a story behind it. In the CD it's more personal. It’s my time. You can give more of yourself and more of your style. It’s just you singing for yourself.”