Support ESC Insight on Patreon

The Magic Of Sanremo And The Love Of A Found Family Written by on February 10, 2024 | 1 Comment

As the 74th Sanremo Music Festival approaches the final night, Ilaria Pagano celebrates the music, the memes, and the emotional power of Italy’s biggest show.

In a time where the news is flooded by the worst of humanity, the timeless Italian festival of music is providing the breather we all need.

Everyone Is Welcome

Just opening any social media, even the most toxic one, these days, all I can see is great music and laughter. Amadeus’s last Sanremo is probably his strongest yet, with all 30 songs occupying the Spotify Italia Top 30 and no clear winner. Fantasanremo, the iconic fan game, is back in full swing after a low year.

Even the drama, one of the competition’s signature traits, is almost absent was it not for a kerfuffle among bigshots over, of all things, the Chicken Dance (here in the UK, that would be The Birdie Song, but it has many names – Ed).

John Travolta, Sanremo 2024 (RAI)

John Travolta, Sanremo 2024 (RAI)

There’s no animosity on show between the singers, who also got to introduce each other these last two nights. I get the feeling the artists know what’s going on with the Fantasanremo contest and are having lots of fun sneaking in points for their teams.

And the best of all is that all of this light-hearted-ness isn’t sweeping sensitive topics under the rug, as we have nods to the current situation in Palestine by guest Edoardo Leo and singers Ghali, Diodato and Dargen D’Amico, who also wore accessories in Ukrainian colours on Thursday.

Dargen D'Amico, Sanremo 2024 (Rai)

Dargen D’Amico, Sanremo 2024 (Rai)

Personally, it’s been such a long time since I’ve felt as alive as I do right now. Sanremo has a strong parasocial community; being part of it makes me, and many others, feel like we belong. Music is, after all, is a healing experience.

Exactly ten years ago, I was undergoing the worst depressive episode of my life, and Sanremo truly gave me a beacon of hope. It gave me music to soothe my pain and made me laugh like I hadn’t done for weeks. A decade later, it’s emotional to be here and see the community larger and more united than ever.

Family Sanremo

My favourite part of Sanremo this year has been the artists finding out they became memes (Stash from The Kolors with his selfie and Fiorella Mannoia with a wild way of mishearing her song’s lyrics). Instead of being offended, they’re running with it and having fun… they’re no different from the fans posting content online.

Lots of Italians are still unaware of the resonance the event has internationally, but open any “how do we explain this to foreigners?” tweet, and it’s full of non-Italians who are well into the festival’s lore. And it feels great; it’s so exciting that the Sanremo family has expanded to include fans worldwide.

After 74 years, the last five with Amadeus, Sanremo finds itself in a blissful bubble of conscious peace that provides relief in a dark historical period, making us feel like we’re all at a big party even if we’re at home in our PJs, fitting the official Eurovision motto perfectly.


About The Author: Ilaria Pagano

Ilaria Pagano has been a Eurovision fan since Italy’s return in 2011. Known on Twitter as TheFuschiaDragonfly, she shares with enthusiasm her love for music and the competition on and offline.... and dreams of become an artist herself. She live translates (as best as she can) the Sanremo shows on her Twitter account to try to improve the experience for the international audience.

Read more from this author...

You Can Support ESC Insight on Patreon

ESC Insight's Patreon page is now live; click here to see what it's all about, and how you can get involved and directly support our coverage of your Eurovision Song Contest.

If You Like This...

Have Your Say

One response to “The Magic Of Sanremo And The Love Of A Found Family”

  1. Shai says:

    “current situation in Palestine”

    That’s opening a can of worms, in an article about the joy of San Remo.

    This sentence suggests there is country called Palestine, with a territory, boarders or anything which define country, including a capital city and own passports. Right now you have Israel, Palestinians who live in Gaza and Palestinians who live under the Palestinian authority. Calling the place Palestine suggests that Israel does not exist, which we know is not true and I personally find quite offending. Maybe in the future Palestinians will have their own country, but right now you will have to find another term to describe what currently happen in that area.

Leave a Reply