Volcanic, strong-willed, intelligent, whimsical, the Florentine Irene Grandi is preparing to spend a summer full of concerts with the satisfaction of having been chosen in the role of hero for the international show that debuts in world premiere on 22 and 23 July at Tones Teatro Naturain the Cava Roncino di Oira Crevoladossolain Val d’Ossola, produced by the Tones on the Stones Foundation which for 15 years organized the festival of the same name dedicated to contemporary opera.
Is called “The Witches Seed”And is the spectacular and immersive rock opera signed by the brilliant drummer and composer, as well as founder of The Police, Stewart Copeland. A provocative work on witches with pieces by Chrissie Hynde of the Pretenders, which are added to the compositions of Copeland. The libretto is by the British-Irish playwright Jonathan Moore, a conducting the orchestra will be the Irish Eimear Noone – first woman in history to get on the podium of the orchestra during the 92nd Academy Awards and composer of some video game soundtracks such as World of Warcraft – while the visionary direction is signed by Manfred Schweigklofer and the immersive video sets were created by the talented concept & visual artist Edvige Faini.
Parallel to this commitment, Grandi resumes her tour – ‘Me In Blues‘, a passionate tribute to Irene’s roots, her musical training and her first experiences on stage, in which she obtained an imprinting which she then developed into a personal and certainly recognizable style. The tour starts on June 29th from the municipal stadium Trestina – Citta ‘Di Castello (Pg) and stops on July 29 at the Cloister of San Domenico in Prato, on August 16 at the Rotonda Vassallo in Lerici (SP), on August 21 at Palamontepaschi in Chianciano Terme (Si) and on September 11 at the Teatro Sociale – Festival of the Communication of Camogli (Ge).
Irene, why did they choose you in the role of the witch?
“Because Chrissie Hynde of The Pretenders has a deep voice and Stewart Copeland wanted the songs to be in that key. Because he liked the idea of a witch singing with a deep voice, with almost masculine tones therefore in contrast with that of the inquisitor who is a sopranist, that is, a man who sings with a soprano voice. I was delighted with the proposal, beaming when he told me that they couldn’t ask for a singer more suited to the project than me and that Stewart was pleased that a pop artist known like me would accept such an experimental project. “
You’ve actually created a kind of gender fluid vocal?
“This thing is curious. Stewart likes to say that in this musical, women are not victims, but of fight backs.
They have a slightly masculine warrior attitude. The reality then we know how it went in history, that is, that the witches were all killed, but this work encourages a combative attitude “.
A stance on diversity?
“In the sense that the woman must maintain her independence and that the female gender must also be allowed to ask herself whether or not she should marry, have children, have the submission to her husband that was foreseen at that time, but that there is it is also today in other parts of the world ”.
In short, do you feel comfortable in the part of the witch?
“I have always said that not all women are equal and that it is not good to be. The perfect wife is welcome, but also the one who is not ».
Which side are you on?
“I represented in my songs the society of the 80s and 90s in which women became very emancipated. As in the 70s there was talk, albeit in a different way, of feminism and the new role of women in society. And I sang these themes, emphasizing that one can find one’s dignity in things other than being necessarily married or following common sense ”.
Is music therefore inclusion for you?
“It also includes the different. It carries on the idea that everyone can express their uniqueness, that being themselves is still an important thing, to be defended, to be supported. We must not be judged because maybe we are not the perfect consumer or we do not lower the crest to the dictates that society gives us. We are people in transformation and thank goodness we are. We go on following our uniqueness, our right to exist by expressing our opinions, even in music “.
Continue to be a successful artist, but also committed …
“Which doesn’t hurt. It is good to have some content to support. When you are a girl you have to express yourself, there is the typical youth rebellion to emancipate from parents and find their own way. Then comes the time when it is good to look within and songs like Before leaving for a long journey, Halley’s comet, songs a little more reflective, introspective that make you support some theme. For “The Witches Seed” it was the turn of the freedom to express oneself, while with the project ‘Me in the blues‘I have focused on the roots, which I have rediscovered. It is also a stimulus for all new musicians who, before going to X Factor, must ask themselves what they really are. There is so much music that you can get confused, you can get lost before you arrive, so before you get involved you have to form your own taste, have your own identity very clear in mind “.
Its how is it?
“A film like” Blues Brothers “taught me a lot, that kind of music, that attitude, even a little ironic and irreverent that somehow belongs to the woman who asks Respect. Then there is being on a mission, because every artist is on a mission and tries to make the best of him “.
What has been stimulating you lately?
“With this work I found myself marvelously in the role of the witch, but I was also intrigued by the figure of the little girl who is silent in a corner and represents the woman to come. The inquisition, the pain of women is as if they were a dream of her, a condition to carry with her to build a new world, as do Greta Thumberg, Bebe Vio, these little great women who could be our future rulers. At least I hope so, since they are wise children, full of ideals. They have an incredible strength, they know many things and they give the right value to the things that are worth doing, to the right battles that must be fought “.