Giancarlo Giannini in his now usual role as the Prince of Soragna, a small town in the lower Po Valley, the starting and ending point of all the adventures in the series, is absorbed by the daily shaving ritual with his family barber, in this case played by the real Prince of Soragna, Diofebo Meli Lupi.
A dear friend, the Italian tenor Vittorio Grigólo, arrives breathlessly and asks the Prince, who is half Neapolitan, for advice on the best rendering of the famous song "O Paese d'o Sole" with in the background the version by Roberto Murolo, the unmistakable voice and sophisticated performer of the tradition.
The difficulty is obviously not technical for the great tenor but lies in looking for that expressivity and passion in interpretation that has made this musical form, deriving from great Italian melodrama, one of the best loved in the world.
The Prince knows that the secret lies in the authenticity of the emotion expressed by the song and only by becoming impregnated with the essence of that place which is both dramatic and enchanting at one and the same time, Naples, will the tenor’s voice be able to express its seductive and inimitable power.
Accompanied by his loyal Fefé who in this film is plunged in an amorous enchantment and in the silent search for ecstatic emotion, the Prince accompanies Grigólo on an “immersion” into the essence of being Neapolitan, far from the common stereotypes.
The Gulf, the old squares, the noisy alleys, the fried pizzella on the street corner, the lemons, the posteggiatori, the terrace in Posillipo with a view of Vesuvius… it’s all true...“and it’s all necessary”
Only through perceiving the essence of the city, the cradle of European culture since the 18th century, can the tenor be convincing and seduce his public.
At the end of an ideal day - “when you look for perfection, the time does not exist” - the great tenor is ready for the performance in the magnificent Rocca di Soragna where all the actors of the film appear in a final scene inspired by the great Federico Fellini.
The emotion reaches its zenith: the Prince nods in satisfaction, Fefé is at the height of excitement and he discovers the meaning of love in his sensitive soul, and there is applause all round.
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