Patrizio: Romantic music, Italian style

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Entertainment,Music,Emily Cary

Each time Patrizio Buanne enters the stage, he is surrounded by a romantic aura. The Italian heartthrob is certain to captivate the Barns at Wolf Trap audience during his debut at the popular venue on Thursday. Long before PBS broadcast his live DVD concert in 2006 to introduce the handsome superstar to America, he had sold millions of gold and platinum albums worldwide. That same year, he met President Bush at the National Italian American Foundation gala. Since then, he has released four albums bursting with his stylish interpretations of international and American standards.

"I am finally being more experimental in what I do," he said. "My first two albums were of Italian standards like 'My Love, Forgive Me' and 'A Man Without Love.' Most Americans didn't recognize them as Italian because they had been recorded by Petula Clark, Tom Jones and others in English.

Italian standards are not necessarily classical, just as Italian foods are not just pizza and pasta.

Onstage
Patrizio Buanne
Where: The Barns at Wolf Trap
When: 8 p.m. Thursday
nfo: $32; 877-WOLFTRAP; wolftrap.org.

"I look for Italian essence in my songs, even those I write, and I love getting involved in the arrangements because I know how I feel. An arrangement is nothing but feeling. My approach to composing varies. I go for the best of my heart with a nice melody people can sing along to. It's never a formula."

As a child, Patrizio traveled to and from Vienna, Austria and his hometown of Naples because of his father's restaurant business. He quickly snapped up a half dozen or more languages while singing, entertaining and entering talent contests. The first he won was at age 17 for a song he wrote half in Italian and half in Polish for a performance at the pope's visit in Wroclaw, Poland. That led to his first record. Upon moving back to Italy at 19 after his father's death, he studied languages and became a frequent guest on television.

Patrizio's arrangements are uniquely his. Fans may know the Patsy Cline hit "Crazy," Frank Sinatra's "Fly Me to the Moon" or Rosemary Clooney's "Mambo Italiano," but his treatment of each adds a new romantic dimension.

"People should not be afraid to express their emotions," he said. "Expressing emotions to some men is all about being cool, rough or strong. They must not be afraid to be romantic. My typical album is for lovers. Girls like me and I'm a good role model for men. I don't want audiences to fill their heads with what I do. I want them to like my voice, my music and my ability to be funny, romantic or stupid as the occasion demands."

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