The Leonardo da Vinci Society of the Bay Area is celebrating its 70th Anniversary. Founded by Italiophiles who were captivated by the genius of...
An icon of Italian pop music worldwide, in her 20-year successful career, Laura Pausini has become a celebrated international artist with over 70 million albums sold since her debut at the Sanremo music festival in 1993, when she was only 18 years old.
Laura is also the first Italian artist ever to be awarded by Fimi (Italian Music Industry Federation) and Italian Trade the Icon Award for “her essential contribution to the circulation of Italian art and music.”
Today, she is celebrating what she has achieved so far with a yearlong Greatest Hits World Tour that will bring her to The Greek Theater in Los Angeles on October 18.
L’Italo-Americano met the beautiful singer and songwriter at the Wilshire Restaurant in Santa Monica, a few weeks before the LA show.
This World Tour celebrates 20 years of success not only in Italy but also all over the world. Can you tell us more about the LA performance? Are you preparing anything special for the local audience?
For over a year I have been on tour to promote the Greatest Hits album that marks the 20th anniversary of my debut singing in Spanish, while my first record in Italian was released 22 years ago. On this side of Atlantic I owe my popularity in particular to the Latin American public, so the LA concert will be a special one, including songs in Spanish, English, and of course Italian. The last time I performed in LA was 4-5 years ago, and I don’t know exactly what kind of audience to expect: I will ask a few questions during the show and adjust the language accordingly. In addition, the fact that I have never been at The Greek Theater before makes me feel very excited, which usually improves the quality of my performance in terms of emotions and spontaneity. There is also a chance that special guests will make an appearance on stage, as I am inviting some of the colleagues I duetted with in the new album, like the Mexican star Thalia. I hope that everybody will enjoy the show!
Do you believe that language can really make the difference to become an international music star?
Definitely. The United States have always had a strong tradition of pop and rock music, and for Italian-speaking artists is hard to be appreciated by an audience who can’t understand their language. I am very excited to perform a few songs in Italian, but when I came here 10 years ago to record From The Inside, my first album in English, a dance version was released without my approval to meet the local taste. So I left, even if two singles hit the Billboard’s dance chart, as I wanted to become popular in the U.S. with my own music style. On the contrary, Italian and Spanish allow me to write and produce two identical versions of my songs.
You are currently living in Mexico to work as a vocal coach in the TV show La Voz. How do you like it?
It’s exciting! In the beginning, I refused to participate in such shows but after my daughter Paola was born I decided to give them a try. Perhaps I thought that working on TV I would have traveled less… Well, I was wrong. Fortunately Paola loves to travel, she feels home everywhere, and she is already learning a few words in Spanish.
How did motherhood affect your personal and professional life? And is it difficult to combine them?
Motherhood changed me a lot. I am no longer the melancholic adolescent I used to be, now I am peaceful and happy, and so is my music. I don’t feel tired: the fact that she is home waiting for me gives me strength.
What is the secret of your success? And could you imagine any of this back in 1993, when you won the Sanremo music festival?
Not at all, and I didn’t even want to become so famous, I just dreamed of being a piano bar singer like my father. But he pushed me to aim higher and signed me up to the Castrocaro music festival, which I didn’t win. Nevertheless, I was auditioned by some producers and offered a contract with Warner Music, the record company I still work with. That enabled me to participate in the annual festival of Sanremo in 1993, where my song “La Solitudine” won in the category “New Proposals” and earned me an incredible popularity in Italy from one day to the next. I was very young. My father supported me, taught me discipline so that I would wake up early in the morning to work and to study English. He has always accompanied me on tour, and he will be at The Greek Theater on the 18th. I still need him to be at my side, and all of my concerts are dedicated to him.