Close to 10,000 people showed up at the splendid Villa Manin on Saturday night for a woman who`s not only won a Grammy award (2006: Best Latin Pop Album, “Escucha”), a Latin Grammy Award (2005: Best Pop Vocal Album by a Female Artist, “Escucha”) but who has also been the first female artist ever to have played at Milan`s San Siro Stadium (one of the 10 “temples” of international soccer) on June 2nd, 2007, in front of a crowd of 70,000 spectators. I`m taking about Italy`s Laura Pausini, an artist who`s so far sold some 50 millions records worldwide.
Her Villa Manin set list contained 22 songs and well over 2 hours worth of concert, including my favourite (which was part of the final encore), “Primavera In Anticipo”. Some of her other songs also included “La Mia Banda Suona Il Rock” and “Io Canto”.
Pausini`s certainly no newcomer to the world of music as she began singing in local bars with her father when she was only 8 years old. At the age of thirteen, she had her first recording experience with the album “I Sogni Di Laura”. By 1993 she won the prestigious Italian Sanremo Music Festival with one of her best known songs, "La Solitudine”. Six years later the late, great tenor Luciano Pavarotti invited Pausini to his annual "Pavarotti and Friends" concert.
And it doesn`t certainly hurt that Laura`s got a great voice too. This was especially noticed during a rather touching moment of the Villa Manin concert when just two days after the tragic and sad death of Michael Jackson she sang his song, “Heal The World”. Images of MJ were flashed on the two side screens with the words “Ciao Michael” that were instead flashed on the main central screen. No doubt a person or too in the crowd had a tear in their eyes and certainly all those present appreciated Laura`s nice and thoughtful gesture. An eight-member band accompanied her on stage, including her long-time companion Paolo Carta (all pics by M. Rimati).