Kite-Surfing is a Way of Life for Alessio
I first met Alessio when he attended an English class I was teaching. At the beginning of the course he quickly let me know that he would be absent from lessons whenever the wind conditions were right for his great passion, Kite-Surfing.
That passion has now been turned into a book, Melthemi: L’Ultimo Tuffo, written over several years by Alessio and published by Pacini Editore in December 2008. It contains a preface by professional kite-surfer Renzo Mancini.
Singer and actress Chiara De Palo was born in Florence, but moved to Livorno with her family in 1986. She studied singing at the prestigious Fiesole Music School from the age of 5, and later studied theatre, training as a physical theatre performer.
For the last ten years Chiara has lived in London where she has found a highly stimulating environment for her work as an actress. She admits that when she went there initially for a short stay with a friend, she already knew that she was unlikely to return to Italy. And she hasn't looked back since.
Choirmaster with a Spring in his Step
Cristiano Grasso was born in 1973 in Cecina, a small town by the sea in the province of Livorno, although he now lives in Livorno. Cristiano’s passion is for music, as shown by his very busy schedule as school teacher, piano teacher and choirmaster of three different choirs here in Livorno.
Passionate about Tourism and Motorbikes
Federica Tucci was born in Livorno in 1973. She lives in Livorno with her long-time partner Antonio, and manages her own business, TFL Tours, which takes up most of her time and energy.
Federica started working in the tourist industry when she was only 20, accompanying groups of visitors on tours around Italy while also studying for a degree in languages at the University of Pisa.
Percussionist and Composer, mad about Jazz
Giacomo Riggi Mazzone was born into a family where music was already a dominant feature (his grandfather Tony Mazzone owns the well-known music shop in Livorno), so perhaps inevitably he grew up to study percussion instruments at the Istituto Mascagni in Livorno, under the guidance of Jonata Faralli.
An Anglo-Livornese Collaboration
13 June 2008 Giles Foster has lived and worked in Livorno for longer than he probably cares to remember, but he is originally from Salisbury in England and comes from a family of musicians. He had his first experience of Rock music at the age of 8, when his father first brought a TV home. Ever since then he has been passionate about music, singing and playing the acoustic guitar in his own band, and writing his own songs which communicate his great love of life.
Livornese footballer Giorgio Chiellini, currently on the Italian squad at the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil, started his football career with his home team AS Livorno when he was only sixteen. He played an active part in the team's rise from Serie C1 to Serie A during his four years with the club, before moving to Fiorentina for one season, and then to Juventus in 2005 where he still plays now. He is a defender, alternating between left and centre back. He has scored a total of 29 goals during his career, including 22 for Juventus.
Making her Way to a Career in Music
Greta was born in Livorno in 1983 and lives here in Livorno with her mum. She first became involved in music at the age of 10 when she started piano lessons, following in the footsteps of her older brother who works as a professional pianist in Mantova.
The piano was not for Greta, however, and after a year she decided to start learning how to play classical guitar at the Rodolfo del Corona school in Livorno. Some years later she met guitarist Simone Ricci and eventually began lessons with him, finally breaking away from classical guitar to develop her talents in modern guitar.
Greta’s favourite musicians include The Police, Michael Jackson, Prince, Cindi Lauper, Suzanne Vega, and in Italy Eros Ramazzotti and Irene Grandi.
It wasn’t until 3 or 4 years ago, though, that Greta began to seriously consider music as a career.
How was it that you started working with Il Vernacoliere at the age of 14?
In a very ordinary way: at school, a friend and I used to draw humorous cartoons during lessons we weren’t interested in. We would pass them back and forth under the desk to make each other laugh (and to get each other sent out of the classroom). Once I managed to get my friend thrown out of class because he was in such fits of laughter, and afterwards I decided to post the cartoon that had made him laugh so much in the letter box of the Il Vernacoliere magazine, close to my school. A month later it was published and I’ve been collaborating with the magazine ever since, for the past 26 years.
Talking to Peter Moore about travel, motorbikes and music, and why, after all his globetrotting, he loves Livorno so much!
Peter Moore, the well-known travel writer from Sydney, Australia, lives in London and regularly journeys to fascinating places around the globe to feed his passion for other cultures and to provide material for his entertaining books. He has published several titles based on his worldwide travel adventures, and currently also writes for the British travel magazine Wanderlust, and newpapers like The Guardian.
I first discovered Peter several years ago when searching online for instructions about how to make Livorno's celebrated Ponce, and stumbling across his article in the Sunday Times about Bar Civili, the historic Ponce bar!