439. Music and adrenaline were our drugs…
Late in the 1950s, there were no discos. Young people would meet on a Saturday afternoon or at a birthday party at somebody’s place.
There came the idea of renting a place on a Saturday afternoon to give all the students the possibility of getting together, getting to know one another and making whoopee without being scolded by the parents who had allowed the party in their house.
I got in touch with the owner of a club, “Chalet I Tigli”, which was only open at night. Mr Boni was impressed by my initiative and he said he was available to make my dream come true! Another stroke of luck! Riccardo knew how much the young people loved the world of music and what we had to give them. We agreed he would be responsible for the band and I would take care of the rest. The hours were from 3.30 pm to 8.00 pm. Entrance fee, including a drink: 150 liras!
I would look for clients in Florence’s schools. In a short time, I had already put together a group of sixty students from different schools who sold tickets and kept a part of the profits for themselves. I was young and I still didn’t have a driving licence. We drove around Florence In a FIAT 500 car owned by some older boys and through a loudspeaker shouted things like “GIANREPARI JUST BACK FROM THEIR AMERICAN TOUR…” or something else, just to attract new people.
Every Saturday I invented a new event, especially competitions to get everybody involved. Rock and roll, hula-hoop and many others. I spent half of the time at the entrance greeting guests as they arrived as good host should. That way, I could also count how many people joined us and, since I knew our costs, I knew that after a certain number of guests it was all profit! I eventually breathed a sigh of relief and joined the others. I liked dancing a lot, especially Rock and Roll.
I had a friend who became my dancing-partner and we would dance like professionals, heads up, legs down! Everybody stopped dancing and gathered around us clapping: I loved being admired! It thrilled me!
It was marvellous seeing young people having fun without using drugs or alcoholic drinks…
Music and adrenaline were our drugs!
I LOVE YOU