Renato Zero returns to fire up Rome, and Rome cuddles one of her most enlightened children, an absolute artist inextricably linked to the dynamics of his hometown and cradle. Both identities run supreme; a consummate artist, refined and provocative, who has never turned his back on those who suffer, and a true son of Rome, who has always kept in touch with his city, and is as wild as she can be.
The soon-to-be 72-year-old celebrates 55 years of career with six sold out concerts at the Circus Maximus in Rome, where the world’s great artists come to perform.
Six sold-out concerts means that Renato Zero will be back again, to enchant his immense crowd of fans like the mice of the Brothers Grimm’s Pied Piper.
It happened in the 80s, after a concert in Marina di Pietrasanta. Renato Zero’s car was surrounded by delirious fans on vespas, who looked like cute little mice to him. Some versions of the story say that he was also on a vespa, others that the police got involved, to whom he said, “Leave them alone, they are cute, they look like so many little mice”.
He was on a vespa, others that the police got involved, to whom he said, “Leave them alone, they are cute, they look like so many little mice”
At any rate, Renato Zero, whose real-life last name is Facchini, has set in stone a deep and intimate relationship with his fans, perhaps like no other Italian singer-songwriter, almost like the foundation of a real-to-goodness community whose ideals are his provocative works performed with strength and intensity since the late 1960s.
Zero’s fans found weapons of peace in his provocative songs, whose delicate poetics gave them courage, pride, and refuge, as they grew up with those stories and made them their own.
This is because Renato Zero's songs have always felt like safe places not far from reality, where there is also a lot of suffering, but no one can harm you, like crutches to keep standing up, another pair of eyes to help you observe with merciless epicness.
Renato Zero's songs have always felt like safe places not far from reality
Renato Zero had been surrounded by fans before that evening in Marina di Pietrasanta. There are many anecdotes in Rome of people waiting for hours to catch a glimpse of him, just to see him up-close and show him their love, and the deep meaning of his songs in their lives, and most of all because Renato Zero’s songs are like a magnet between universes that desire contact.
Renato Zero’s fans, his cute little mice, will ignore everything else in their lives and rejoin their Pied Piper at the Circus Maximus in Rome, on September 23, 24, 25, 28, 30, and October 1. The Piper still has notes to play, still has enthusiasm, energy, and the desire to see once again that adoring audience materialize before his eyes, a miracle that needs him, with his words and thoughts
For that audience, he is always real, even as just a voice in the living room, a great way to make children sing in elementary school, and introduce them to their first poetry in junior high, a fundamental life passage for all of us, to find the strength to go on, get out there and live life, even just by admiring him on stage and thinking, “I can make it too.”
55 years of career means having walked hand in hand with three or four generations of audiences over a very long stretch of road; a great many people built their families listening to Renato Zero's songs, becoming parents and grandparents, and all those children grew up with the exact same concept of poetry in music. A tradition.
Today, Renato Zero is back with the same intrinsic freedom of a lifetime, as an artist and as a person
All this should have happened two years ago, when he turned 70, but the pandemic prevented it. Today, Renato Zero is back with the same intrinsic freedom of a lifetime, as an artist and as a person.
Zero has never tired of fighting the world with vulnerability between his teeth, in a world that wants us to be stronger, prettier, and happier. He responds to certain perverse dynamics with words, arms still around his cute little mice, as if to say, “This is us, and the world will have to love us as we are.” Of course, for one who has written such significant masterpieces as Il Cielo and I migliori anni della nostra vita, all of which somehow have even entered our common language, it is a bit easier.
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