The Renato show is a marathon: three hours of Zerofollia in the arena of the Circus Maximus

A night of pure Zerofollia among the imperial vestiges of the Circus Maximus. Renato Zero takes back his Rome, playing the role of a histrionic gladiator and bewitching the fifteen thousand spectators who flocked to the first of the six evenings scheduled to celebrate his first 70 years (completed in 2020 but celebrated only now cause-pandemic).
On the gigantic stage set up in the historic location, the Roman singer-songwriter retraced “the best years of his life” (artistic, at least), flanked by an orchestra of 50 elements including strings, winds and percussion (the Franciacorta Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted by Maestro Adriano Pennino) and a band made up of 14 musicians, 8 choristers and 24 dancers. With the light design by Francesco De Cavee – over 300 square meters of LEDs – that completely cover the grandstand that houses the orchestra and the colorful visuals, entrusted to the direction of Younuts! (Antonio Usbergo) and Bendo (Lorenzo Silvestri and Andrea Santaterra). An eccentric and multicolored show, that of “Zerosettanta”, which plays on numbers but also on the suggestions of the most fertile decade of the Roman singer-songwriter, the 70s, in fact, which saw the ex-lanky proto-glam dancer of the Piper blossom to become one of the most intense songwriters of his generation. “I did not play the clown of the situation, I sang the problems of the suburbs, the township, the marginalized people”, he explained in an interview in 2020.


The shadows of the night have fallen for at least an hour on the Roman ruins of the immense arena at the foot of the Palatine when the stage comes on and the ineffable Mister Fiacchini bursts into the scene, in excellent shape despite the urban misadventure of a few days ago (a fall on the sidewalk that quickly made the rounds of social networks). Almost moved, he greets the audience praising his name. And, yes, the sorcini still exist, today as fifty years ago, when Zero appeared as an alien who fell on Italian soil, to promote the verb of eccentricity, transgression and transformism, breaking down fences and social taboos and – above all – sexual, which resisted fiercely in the beautiful country divided in half by the Christian Democrats and the Communist Party.
After the intro and That beautiful nothingit’s up to I live And No makeup tonight to warm up an audience that, although all seated on the seats, is already at the foot of its Zero Il Folle. The songs flow: the elegant tango of Voyeura choir Beaches sung together with the audience in the middle of a virtual blue ocean, a poignant one Look for me.

Zero, dressed in a black overcoat and bowler hat, without the now inseparable round glasses, masters the stage on his part, also showing a good vocal form (he will need it, we are only at the beginning of the marathon). Then, here is the first surprise guest: Jovanotti, with whom Zero engages in the duet of Heroes, in a bright yellow and red suit. Lorenzo remains on stage for a medley that also includes the eternal hit Tell me who sleeps next to me. Not exactly the cup of tea by Jovanotti, who however has now become in every sense the navel of the world (for better or for worse), and everything can.
Alone again on stage, Zero thrills with a heartfelt one In the gardens that no one knowswhich makes thousands of lights (mobile phones) shine in the night, before unleashing one Die here which leads to collective dances and even small trains in the stalls.
Short pause, and he resumes with the Blacks by chance on stage to warble with Renato on the notes of You invent. It is the prelude to one of his best songs ever, A man to burnwhich rekindles the pride of the fans of the first hour but loses a bit of polish in an orchestral package that is too soft-lounge.
Zero leaves the stage, where two special guests go up, Sonia Mosca and Giacomo Volo, young singers called to interpret a medley that flows rather anonymously, ending however with a classic Zerolandia branded as Man, no. Then the stage turns into a DJ set with the images and sounds of a remix of ask for me by Morgan, with all the dancers on stage in a frenzied collective dance. A small technical incident disturbs the execution of The Adventurer, with Zero making fun of his suitcase left on the ground. It is the closing, all in autobiographical shades, of the first part of the show.

The second part starts immediately strong with the emotions of My fairytalewhile the images of the early Zero scroll across the screen, awakening an inevitable nostalgia. With open arms turn up the pace, as well as the proud hymn Hold on. Zero, this time in a light green suit, plays in the midst of his colorful choreography, with his typical gestures that ignite the audience, before Morgan, this time in flesh and blood, reappears on stage to give life to an exciting version of Friend, with a lot of mutual dedication of esteem and friendship between the two. “It’s nice to deliver these scores that mark a personal journey to a friend like Morgan, a sensitive guy who paid for his mistakes and with whom I share certain values”.
Then Renato gets a giant remote control to transmit the images of the cartoon to the screen Nightmare Before Christmas by Tim Burton, because he is the one to interpret a piece of the soundtrack (as well as dubbing the protagonist, Jack Skeleton, in the Italian version). “Burton is a child who has stopped growing, he has a special sensitivity. Disney authorized us to release this footage, “he proudly comments.

But here is already the new guest: it is Fabrizio Moro, called to a medley with Queen, What I give you And Chaosin a riot of Romanism, concluded by Zero with the mocking observation that “the gentlemen have a lot to learn from the forced ones”.
More unpredictable, the next guest, who arrives after another celebration of the Revolution by Fiacchini: Giorgio Panariello, DJ at the console for I sell myself and the protagonist of a monologue in which he tells how his famous imitations of “His Holiness” were born – as his teacher and now friend re-baptizes – seasoned with exchanges and jokes between the original and its parody.
But then we get back together for the liturgy of More on, one of the absolute pinnacles of Zero’s songbook, which ours brings home with a respectable interpretation. After a successful interlude entirely dedicated to the anthology of costumes of a life entitled My tailor thanksit’s time for new old or newer classics from Sitting on the moon to The best years of our life (sung practically only by the audience), from the video of Lucky to the poignant epilogue of the immortal The skyon blue painted sets.

The curtain closes after three hours of show. But Renato Zero, who in the meantime has gone from yellow to pink and white, does not appear tired, after all he is used to blockbusters and marathons. How can we forget, for example, the eight concerts that in 2010 saw him celebrate his sixty years in Piazza di Siena, in the heart of Villa Borghese.
“Don’t forget me, eh!”, He shouted in one of his famous live performances and repeats it again closing the concert. Her response continues to give her audience. A faithful embrace, which resists the transformations, changes of mood and perspectives that have characterized the career of that ex-freak boy named Renato Fiacchini, who remembers having “sent fuck off the bourgeoisie and its conventions”. The Tale of him continues and also that of all those who continue to love him.
The Zerosettanta live event will continue with five other appointments: tomorrow, Sunday, Wednesday 28, Friday 30 September and then again on 1 October. A total of ninety thousand spectators are expected. In the face of Zerofollia.


Before the concert, meeting the press, Renato Zero wanted to confess all the emotion for this live marathon that sees him as the protagonist. “It’s like resuming your studies after leaving them prematurely. The stage is a demanding reality, where you detach yourself even for a short time you have to start over with posture, with emotional stability. But the pump still holds me up and I would take advantage of it », he says in that always ironic tone of his just before going on stage. «The trust and esteem I get from the public is the best answer for my presence here. From me they need food, a supplement to help them overcome difficult times. Even if I have often plunged the knife into the wound, confronting myself with loneliness, with restlessness. Like so many before me: Guccini, De André, De Gregori, Leonard Cohen, Bob Dylan. I don’t want to get close to those peaks, but a good artist has a duty to insert himself into existential problems ». Not even the fall on the Lungotevere, immortalized by a mobile phone and ending up on the web, did not affect his good mood (“Today I did the scene again, with my son. And we called it Niagara Falls. The video? a fan to whom I had denied a selfie “), even if his gaze on Rome today is rather sad:” There is a problem of veiled racism and I am sorry that this city suffers from it. Rome is losing certain characteristics, we have lost the square, the alleys, the workshops of the artisans ».

Each concert at the Circus Maximus with about 15,000 spectators per evening (“I am never for the gigantic forms of communication, I have long ago rejected the Olympic Stadium”) will be declined in a different way and with surprise guests, he explains. «Somehow there will also be Mimì and Gabriella Ferri, I have an emotional debt with them. Raffaella? Not her, I still can’t be aware that she’s gone. ” The six Roman concerts fall at the turn of the political elections. “The coincidence didn’t touch me in the least. I too have been voted by my fans and I stay here six evenings ». And Renato does not hold back, on what he is and on what could be. “We got along so well with Draghi that his term ended. What was the rush to vote? Anyone wanted to leave in a hurry? We go to the vote as if we were making the football pool ticket, without knowing anyone. We had Almirante, Togliatti, Nenni, Saragat, politicians who made themselves known for better or for worse. The strength of that Italy there was in the politicians who went to the villages, who conversed. Now I find it offensive that after a term of office they have retirement. And that on the other hand, bills of 600 euros are paid. We want peace and a government that considers the needs of the workers, of the students. There is no choice between buying bread or paying for gas. We are orphans of a culture that is given to us as a luxury, not as an indispensable element ». Like music, which is “with food”. “It’s not that the ditty is just disengagement. It also becomes a war song. It is an oratory to get closer to God. Faith? Impossible to explain, but it is first of all the need to make peace with oneself ».

Last updated: Saturday 24 September 2022, 02:06


The Renato show is a marathon: three hours of Zerofollia in the arena of the Circus Maximus