It was the first Celebrity Fight Night ever held in Italy and it was a resounding success in terms of the celebrities who came and the funds collected (roughly six million euro).
coordinated an impeccable event as it met the needs of the U.S. foundation and cooperated closely with the Andrea Bocelli Foundation
(among the beneficiaries of the eventâ€™s proceeds and key player in the charity auction held during the gala finale) and with Veronica, Andrea Bocelliâ€™s wife and manager.
The sponsors of this charity marathon were Stefano Ricci, Scervino, Cavalli, Salvatore Ferragamo, Emilio Pucci and Frescobaldi.
and Ermanno Scervino
were the lead players of the first events: from the lunch hosted by Scervino to the dinner at the Teatro della Pergola organized and sponsored by Stefano Ricci â€“ after cocktails at the headquarters of Salvatore Ferragamo in Palazzo Feroni.
Stefano Ricci also led the events of the following day that began with breakfast surrounded by the looms of the Antico Setificio Fiorentino and ended with dinner in Andrea Bocelliâ€™s home at Forte dei Marmi (prepared by Enoteca Pinchiorri) where the guests were entertained by John Legend
and Lionel Richie
â€“ among others, with Sophia Loren
as the eveningâ€™s Emcee-hostess.
The festivities continued on 6 September with an amazing luncheon at the Castello di Nipozzano and dinner in the home of Roberto Cavalli.
And then, the evening in Palazzo Vecchio, hosted by Toni
and Ermanno Scervino
. This Celebrity Night Fight was one of the most amazing and elegant events ever held in Florence with a star-studded list of 250 guests: George Clooney
, with his bride-to-be Amal Alamuddin
, Lionel Richie
, Laura Pausini
, Belen Rodriguez
, Michelle Hunziker
, Zubin Mehta
and Italyâ€™s first lady, Agnese Renzi
, just to name a few.
The eveningâ€™s proceeds, benefitting the Mohammad Ali Parkinson Centre
and the Andrea Bocelli Foundation
, are earmarked for empowerment projects in Haiti.
The amazing lots up for auction ranged from the thrills of a drive around the track in a Formula One car, to Panerai and de Grisogono watches, from tailor-made clothes by Stefano Ricci to the white crocodile bag by Ermanno Scervino.
THE INTERVIEW: VERONICA BERTI BOCELLI
Clearly thrilled and satisfied by the eventâ€™s outcome, Veronica Berti Bocelli, Andreaâ€™s manager and also vice president of the Andrea Bocelli Foundation, who has a special place for Haiti in her heart, answered some questions for us:
Itâ€™s one thing to be famous, and another to put oneâ€™s fame and name out there for charity. How did you convince these big names to attend?
Actually, it was much easier than you would think. Over the years, with Andrea, I have been able to realize that the more famous and â€œvaluableâ€ artists and celebrities from the entertainment and fashion world are, the more they remain â€œplainâ€ and willing people. Itâ€™s an equation that this experience has definitely proved.
Of course, there is no doubt that my husband was the trump card: all the invitees share a huge admiration for Andrea and his singing. Itâ€™s never hard to convince a fan to join his or her favorite and especially to participate in a charity marathon with him!
And how did they react to your request?
Andreaâ€™s philanthropic militancy is a well-known fact. So there was no surprise, on the contrary everyone was really interested in such a bold project. We received prompt, cordial and very heartfelt replies to 99% of our invitations that also went out to many people who are truly our friends...
What problems do you run up against in getting so many â€œbig namesâ€ together?
We are talking about people with very full schedules: sometimes their agendas are planned two or three years in advance. For example, some of our dear friends who are outstanding names on the international scene tried to do everything possible not to miss the Florence event but in the end they had to decline the invitation because of professional commitments (film, television, concerts) that they couldnâ€™t postpone or cancel.
The fashion world often seems detached. But in this case it played a key role. What is the right button to press to involve big names like Ermanno Scervino and Stefano Ricci?
Here too, we can apply the equation I mentioned before: there is deep ethical soundness and strength behind the names that dictate the rules of elegance and style around the world. There is natural spontaneity, sensitivity and a willingness to roll up their sleeves and work together for the common goal of a better world, with each making his or her own contribution.
For this type of occasion, how important is it to have the support of a professional event organizer?
I am happy to answer this question, and I would like to, once again, express my most sincere compliments to the ENIC team for the job they did. With this type of event, you canâ€™t leave anything to chance. Managing something as complex as this absolutely needs the support of reliable professionals with proven experience.