June 20, 2007 
concert in MOSCOW
Olimpiisky Indoor Arena

Ok, the story of the GREAT EVENING. I start from afar to make you feel how I felt during the last hours before the concert. It was unbearable waiting, I thought there wouldn't be an end to it. The beginning was delayed - people were coming endlessly (many of them had problems with finding a place for parking, I guess). I was at the place at 5.40 and the concert began at 7.25 or so. To the moment I arrived I couldn't control my excitement anymore, so I was almost running along the streets, with my heart ready to jump out of my chest. Finally it started... with the overture, of course, another several minutes of waiting while I knew that Andrea was so close, ready to walk on the stage. Ouverture must be cancelled at Andrea's concerts! But Glinka's piece to Russian and Ludmila was finished and the conductor Marcello Rota left the stage to come back with Andrea. Oh, btw, let me introduce the others to you.
Conductor - Marcello Rota
Soprano - Daniela Bruera
Bariton - Gianfranco Montresor
Russian Chaikovsky symphonic orchestra
State Academic Choir of Russia

And the list of arias and songs ( I'll write only Andrea's parts, if you don't mind)

Mascagni. Cavalleria Rusticana
The Pearl Fishers duet.
E lucevan le stelle
O soave fanciulla
The duet from La Boheme. Act IV (with Montresor)
Di quella pira


Vieni sul mar
Funiculi funicula
O surdato 'nammurato
Verdi. Traviata

As you can see, the first part of the concert was operatic and the second - Canzoni Italiane e Napoletane. And of course, there was a surprise in the very end (not for me, because I didn't doubt a second that it would be there) - The Prayer, O Sole mio and Con te partiro.

Well, to Andrea now. Apparently he felt a little bit uneasy at the first, opera part of the concert,though he smiled from time to time. Have you ever notice the great difference in him when he sings arias and everything else. Even classical Neapolitan songs he sings in much more relaxed and calm manner. But opera arias are something sacred for him. He smiled only a couple of times before the interlude and that state of his was communicated to me. I was sitting with one thought - God, let him sing his best, let him be perfect and I can say my heart sank in the most difficult passages. But he WAS perfect or very close to perfect. High notes - incredible! And that tembre,.. covering you all over softly and gently... Pearl Fishers duet was great, baritone was very good too and they made a fantastic sounding together. The second favourite of mine was O soave fanciulla from La Boheme. I think Andrea knows better than anyone how to sing this duet. I saw several versions before and all of them very wonderful. There's a moment when he takes Mimi's hand and smiles and they sing of Amore together... Brilliant!
Well, I'm not able to tell you about every piece he sang... In the second part of the concert he was, as I've already mentioned very relaxed and smiled all the time. I think there must be a special number of any concert's programme when Andrea stays on the stage and... just SMILES!!! The best smile I've ever seen, so open, so sincere and so shy and grateful! Well, when the official programme was finished he came three times more and sang three extra songs (see above). When the audience heard the first notes of each one it burst out with applause so loud that it muffled the orchestra for several seconds. He sang all three songs incredibly well and at the end of Time to say goodbye a woman next to me started crying... I'm sure she wasn't the only one. As for me I was smiling like a happy idiot and this smile was on my face all the way home and it's still there! And joy is pumping through all my veins. All I feel is a pure delight, ecstatic joy and a feeling of simple childish happiness.
When all musicians left the stage an announcer said: "See you next year"! Hope he said it seriously and we'll see Andrea again in a short period of time.
All people were excited and amazed. They walked out the arena smiling and chatting about how great it was. When we crossed the street a car passed by and we could hear Con te partiro from its' open window. don't know if it was somebody from the concert or just a coincidence, but all in the crowd who heard it burst with a happy laughter.

The end...

And P.S. specially for Andrea

THANK YOU so much for this glorious evening!!! I hope you liked Moscow audience at list a half as it liked you! I want you to know that people were standing and clapping long ago you left the stage, and that they couldn't help shedding a tear or two and then smile happily. Thank you many times and WELCOME BACK to Moscow next year!!! With fondest love and gratitude,

by Alexandra

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