Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Italian Shortbread Cookies - Official Recipe!

We will be adding more recipes for baking and cooking organic and gluten free as well!

Monday, September 3, 2018

Latest Podcast - My 10 Year Anniversary of the Italian American Girl Brand

Listen to my latest podcast as I reminisce about the last 10 years on the Italian American Girl site. This was my first ever web site and social media brand, I launched this site as the new social media revolution was coming to the surface. During the launch and through the years, I've partnered with great brands like Barilla, the Today Show, Keurig, Saeco and more, Artist, authors and celebrities have made their way onto the blog. Listen below, if you're a brand, artist, culinary expert, author and would like to be considered to be interviewed on my podcast, email me at Ciao, grazie! <3

Sunday, September 2, 2018

Anniversary Post Part 1- Celebrating Most Popular Italian American Girl Blogs

So, the Italian American Girl blog is coming up on 10 years!! How can that be possible? I remember when everyone was just starting their online presence and the Italian American Girl blog served as my real world example of becoming digital and yet sharing more about myself and my upbringing.   I truly learned how to become the digital media expert through becoming what they now called an influencer.   I'm very proud of the partnerships, content and events I've promoted, or published over the years.  I've met incredible people from our Italian American world and honestly we are all proud Americans celebrating our cultural heritage.  We all have history as immigrants, as our parents and grandparents.  This country was built on the hard work of immigrants from all over the world, that's what makes America great.

To celebrate some of the throwbacks of the Italian American Blog, I'm highlighting the top blog posts of all time.. it's interesting what topics resonate with so many.  Thank you everyone for the support and love over the years.    We'll be posting an anniversary special feature... perhaps even some LIVE guest posts on Instagram, and Facebook.  Stay tuned.

If you have a product, press or content you would like considered to be featured on my site, please send me a pitch at

Here are the TOP posts of all time on the Italian American Girl site- Enjoy and thank you!

I'm Italian and Yes, I Have Curly Hair.

Italian American Girl Recipe - Eggplant Polpettone - Meatless Version

Monday, April 2, 2018

My Latest Film/ Education Project - Generation Change Screening at Rider University

Ciao Amici, as many of you know I heavily involved in the arts and especially media and film.   I've partnered with Seven13Films and Rider University to present a special screening of the documentary Generation Change.  Our event is coming up on April 19th at Rider University in Lawrenceville, N.J.  Learn more below: 

Seven13 Films and Rider University Present Youth Symposium with Trenton Mayoral Candidates Thursday, April 19, 6:30 p.m.  

Alicia Nieves of CBS 3’s Eyewitness News to Moderate Youth Symposium at Rider University After Special Screening of Documentary ‘Generation Change’

LAWRENCEVILLE, NJ, – April 2, 2018 – Seven13 Films and Rider University will present a youth symposium with Trenton Mayoral candidates and moderated by Alicia Nieves of CBS 3’s Eyewitness News. Mayoral candidates in attendance will be Darren Green, Reed Gusciora, Annette Horton-Lartigue, Paul Perez and Walker Worthy Jr. The public event will take place on Thursday, April 19, 2018 at 6:30 p.m. at Rider University. Attendees must register in advance through

The symposium will feature today’s youth, who will ask the panel of mayoral candidate’s question on how they would improve the social challenges of Trenton. The youths selected to ask the questions will be from local schools and youth organizations. Each candidate will have limited time to answer each question.

Prior to the youth symposium, seven13 Films will be screening an episode of their docuseries Generation Change and the Rider University students will be screening their featurette Generation Change: It Starts with Us.

“It is amazing to see the film we have created has brought together the world of politics and education all one in place. “says Lee Kolinsky, co-owner of seven13 Films. “With CBS-3 and Alicia Nieves participating in the event, it’s the right step for great things to come.”

Directed and produced by Joseph A. Halsey and written and produced by Kolinsky, the docuseries Generation Change was created with a mission to increase social awareness about issues affecting our local youth. The film features Good Morning America’s Adrienne Bankert and youths from the organization PEI Kids.

 “We created this episode of Generation Change to find out what Trenton youths would do in their community if they were mayor,” says Joseph A. Halsey, co-owner of seven13 Films. “Now, these kids will get a chance to ask the mayoral candidates what they would change if they were elected.” Halsey adds, “Our film was designed to inspire a conversation and promote positive change in the community.”

The event is being planned and produced by Rider University students in “COM341 Publicity Methods,” a course currently being taught by Adjunct Professor Kathy Magrino. Since January, Magrino’s class has been working closely with seven13 Films and media consultant Margaret Fontana of Margaret Fontana Media.
“Producing and promoting this event has provided a great ‘real-world’ learning experience for everyone involved,” Magrino says. “My students and I are very excited to be working with Joe and Margaret and the entire seven13 Films crew. We are so grateful to them for this opportunity and for all of their time and guidance!”

For more information about the event or to register to attend, go to the Eventbrite registration page online: Or contact Kathy Magrino at

About Generation Change
Generation Change is a docuseries that interviews adjudicated and at-risk Trenton city youth focusing on how they would solve current problems in their community such as building positive relationships with law enforcement and local government. The film features Good Morning America’s Adrienne Bankert and the Official Anthem of Generation Change features singer/actor Badia Farha with recording artist Dominic Jones.  Generation Change anthem produced by Joseph A. Halsey and John Swanhart.

About seven13 Films
Seven13 films is dedicated to providing social messages that spark conversation through the art of filmmaking. With several years of experience in television and film, seven13 films offers comprehensive media strategies designed to drive education, awareness, community outreach and engagement on important public issues.


Saturday, February 10, 2018

Italy’s First Lady of Song FIORELLA MANNOIA Makes Anticipated American Debut February 23rd in NYC

New York —  — Fiorella Mannoia, the female voice of Italian song, announces her American concert debut.  The "singer’s singer" will take the Manhattan stage on Friday, February 23rd at Town Hall.  In this long-awaited Stateside appearance, the audience will be treated to Mannoia’s interpretations of the songbook that has accompanied fans of Italian music for over two generations. This special event also serves as the wrap-up of The Combattente Tour, a string of exactly 100 live dates through Italy’s most prestigious theaters as well as European capitals, in support of the artist’s latest platinum album release.  The Town Hall concert caps off a whirlwind year of activity for Fiorella Mannoia including her fifth return to the Italian nation's renowned Sanremo Festival.

Fiorella Mannoia’s recent projects range from a tribute to Lucio Dalla to appearances on the Italian version of X Factor.  Her latest album 2016’s Combattente features compositions by old friends including Fossati and new collaborators such as Negramaro’s Giuliano Sangiorgi as well as songs penned by Mannoia herself.   In 2017 Fiorella Mannoia returned to the Sanremo Festival stage in competition for the fifth time.

Fiorella Mannoia is a five time winner of Italy’s prestigious Tenco Prize and her recorded body of work counts some two dozen albums.
Fiorella Mannoia US Debut Concert

Friday, February 23rd / New York, NY
The Town Hall
123 W 43rd St
8:00pm (Doors 7:30pm)

Sunday, September 3, 2017

Columbus Citizens Foundation Committed to the Preservation of the Columbus Monument

 The Columbus Citizens Foundation is committed to the preservation of the Columbus Monument at Columbus Circle.

Over the years, Columbus Day and the Columbus Monument have played a vital role in Italian-American acceptance and the celebration of Italian culture. 

The statue itself was created by renowned Italian sculptor Gaetano Rosso in 1892 and funded by Italian-American immigrants through newspaper sales. At the request of the city, the Columbus Citizens Foundation is proud to have played a significant role in the statue’s restoration, which was completed in 1992.

Every year we are asked the question, “Why is the celebration of Columbus important to the Italian- American community?” The legacy of Columbus was essential in truly legitimizing our transition from Italians to Americans. Our Italian-American ancestors, facing bigotry and discrimination, identified Columbus as an Italian celebrated greatly across America for establishing a lasting bridge between the Old and New World. 

Lear more:

Controversial topic - Saving Columbus Circle Monument in New York City, -- CF statement "Every year we are asked the...
Posted by Italian American Girl on Sunday, September 3, 2017

Italian American Girl T-Shirts

Yes! #tshirt #italianamericangirl #italo

A post shared by Margaret Fontana (@italianamericangirl) on

Click here to visit the store:

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Garden State Film Festival to Feature Italian Films...

The Garden State Film Festival announced six Italian films will screen at the 2017 Garden State Film Festival located in Atlantic City

 “We are excited to be able to present great Italian films as a part of our 15th Annual Film Festival in Atlantic City, and shine a spot light on the extraordinary talent from around the globe,” says Margaret Fontana, the festival’s Executive Director.

 Learn more about films and buy screening passes click here on film titles:


 Individual screening tickets are $14 in advance and $15 at the door and weekend passes are $45 in advance and $50 at the door available at and at festival box offices.

For more information about this film and other programs please visit the GSFF website at  

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Italian Composer and Pianist LUDOVICO EINAUDI Announces American Performances from October 4th - 20th, 2016

Modern Maestro to Appear in the US and Canada in Support of Record Breaking Album “Elements” from October 4th - 20th, 2016

New York — Italian composer and pianist Ludovico Einaudi announces October 2016 concert dates in the United States and Canada in support of his latest album “Elements”.  Upon its debut, “Elements” topped classical charts in 42 countries across the globe.  In the United Kingdom it soared into the nation’s mainstream album chart at #12, the first time in over a generation that a classical artist achieved such heights, surpassing releases by pop stars James Bay and Taylor Swift.  Breaking all records with Elements, Einaudi held all top 10 positions in the UK iTunes classical chart while becoming the country’s most streamed classical artist with over 130 million streams, 500,000 followers and 2 million monthly listeners on Spotify.

Ludovico Einaudi has evolved into one of the most successful musicians in the world.  The Guardian points out that if you haven’t heard his music, “then it’s probably because you don’t know it’s by Ludovico Einaudi”.  His compositions have formed the soundtrack of film and TV productions including The Intouchables and the Black Swan working with a diverse range of directors from acclaimed Canadian Xavier Dolan to Oscar winner Clint Eastwood.  Brands such as NIKE and American Airlines have seamlessly sync’d his works in their advertising campaigns.  Einaudi’s unique contemporary musical style, informed by minimalist, ambient, world and rock musics, has defied categories to become part of the fabric of popular culture being heard in shows such as X-Factor, live performances by rapper/singer Nicki Minaj and remixes by post-rockers Mogwai.  In his own concert appearances, Ludovico Einaudi has likewise crossed genres as the first classical act to play the iTunes Festival on a line-up which included pop diva Lady Gaga, EDM superstar Avicii and Grammy-winning rapper Kendrick Lamar.

The Turin-born Ludovico Einaudi is intrinsically linked to Italy’s modern history.  His grandfather Luigi Einaudi was the first post-war president of the newly created Italian republic.  The influential Einaudi book publishing house was created by his father Giulio Einaudi.  The imprint published the early works of venerated Italian authors Italo Calvino and Primo Levi and brought translations of modern masters such as Brecht, Satre and Proust to the country for the first time.  Ludovico Einaudi studied at Milan’s "Giuseppe Verdi” Music Conservatory under composer Luciano Berio and is a holder of the OMRI (Order of Merit of the Italian Republic).

Ludovico Einaudi’s “Elements Tour”, which is currently selling out across the European Continent, will touch down this fall in the United States, where the album debuted at #2 on the Billboard classical chart.  California concerts in San Francisco, Davis and Los Angeles will be followed by Canadian dates in Calgary, Toronto, Montreal and Quebec City.  Crossing the US border, Einaudi performs in New York City before wrapping in the nation’s capital on October 20th.  The complete North American tour is as follows:



October 4, 2016 San Francisco, CA Herbst Theatre
October 5, 2016 San Francisco, CA Herbst Theatre
October 6, 2016 Davis, CA Mondavi Center - Jackson Hall
October 8, 2016 Los Angeles, CA Royce Hall Auditorium
October 11, 2016 Calgary, AB Jack Singer Concert Hall
October 13, 2016 Toronto, ON Koerner Concert Hall
October 14, 2016 Toronto, ON Koerner Concert Hall
October 15, 2016 Montreal, PQ Masion Symphonique de Montreal
October 16, 2016 Quebec, PQ Le Palais Montcalm - Maison de la Musique
October 18, 2016 New York, NY NYU Skirball Center for the Performing Arts
October 20, 2016 Washington, DC GWU Lisner Auditorium

Sunday, March 6, 2016


Celebrating Italian Americans In Film 

Atlantic City, NJ, March 4, 2016The Garden State Film Festival (GSFF) is proud to feature and celebrate Italian Americans working in the film industry and are honoring Al Sapienza as their 2016 MVP along with this year’s Rising Star recipient and the festival’s Executive Director.

Best known as Mikey Palmice from The Soprano’s, Sapienza is a long-time friend of GSFF and has held countless roles on stage, film and television. Sapienza is of Italian American descent and secured his first major role on stage in the Broadway musical Battlemania, just months after graduating from NYU. Sapienza’s recent credits include the Emmy® Award-winning television series House of Cards, Academy Award-winning film The Big Short and Taken 3.

GSFF celebrates other Italian Americans including recently announced 2016 Rising Star, Joseph Russo (Jersey Boys) and the festival’s newly appointed Executive Director, Margaret Fontana. Fontana is a first generation Italian American and the proud founder of “The Italian American Girl,” a digital platform with a primary focus on shining a spotlight on the achievements of the Italian American community.

The Garden State Film Festival’s weekend long event includes film screenings, Thursday Meet the Filmmakers event, Friday Gala, after parties, panel discussions, Q&A sessions, an open casting call and a black-tie awards ceremony are offered to festival attendees. All events are open to the public.  Weekend passes are $45 and provide access to all events (except the Black Tie Awards Dinner.) Individual screening tickets are $12. All can be purchased at where complete schedule information can be found.

This year the festival will feature 214 films from over 17 countries, host an open talent casting call, hold engaging panel discussions, opening and closing ceremonies and inspire the next generation of filmmakers. Ed Asner will return for his fourth GSFF and other well-known celebrities are slated to attend.

About the Garden State Film Festival:
The Garden State Film Festival was envisioned by 25-year film industry veteran Diane Raver and the late Hollywood actor Robert Pastorelli in 2002 and launched the following year. Since 2003, thousands of films have made their public premiers, hundreds of thousands of people from around the world have attended; and the total infusion of cash to local businesses since inception exceeds $5 million. Until 2013, it was held in Asbury Park, in and around the Convention Center complex.  In 2014, it moved to Atlantic City with financial and operation support from the Casino Reinvestment Development Authority (CRDA).  GSFF now serves as a major component of the strategic plan to promote arts and culture in Atlantic City to re-establish the resort as the Mid-Atl. The GSFF is a 501-c-3 non-profit organization.

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Italian American Girl T-Shirts - Shop Now!

Italian American Girl T-Shirts! Last of the stock available now till the New Year! Make great gifts! #italianamerican

Posted by Italian American Girl on Saturday, December 19, 2015

How To Make Italian Knot Cookies

Tis the season! Here's one of our more popular posts and fun videos from many years ago of my sister and niece making Italian knot cookies.

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Italian Singer, Pianist and Songwriter CHIARA CIVELLO Announces October Album Release & Performance Dates

Italian singer, pianist and songwriter CHIARA CIVELLO Announces October Album Release and
Tour Dates in New York, Boston, Miami and Washington DC

New York — September 2015 — Italian singer, pianist and songwriter Chiara Civello announces her return to the US this October with an East Coast tour in support of the album release of "Canzoni" (Songs).  Availableon Quarter Moon via SonyMusic Independent Network (SIN), "Canzoni" is the contemporary Italian songbook as never heard before.  Drawing on repertoire from Paolo Conte to Vinicio CaposselaEnnio Morriconeto Rita Pavone and Subsonica to Negramaro, Chiara creates a celebration of love songs which looks out from Italy to the entire world.  On Canzoni, her fifth studio album, Chiara has gathered an extraordinary array of collaborators:  the monumental Gilberto Gil, the poetic Chico Buarque, the pop diva Ana Carolina and the jazz star Esperanza Spalding all lend their artistry to the project.  The lush, almost hypnotic orchestral arrangements were conceived by the legendary Eumir Deodato.  DJ/Producer Nicola Conte provided an alluring blend of contemporary sensibility and old school analog sound.

Chiara kicks-off her tour on at New York City's famed Joe's Pub, offering Italian music fans a fitting "festa" for Columbus Day eve.  On Chiara marks her return to Boston, the site where she marked a musical milestone becoming the first Italian artist signed to the iconic Verve Records label upon graduating the city’s renowned Berklee College of Music.  Chiara visits her alma mater hosting a master class for Berklee students on October before taking the stage at Scullers Jazz Club on the 14th.  This Scullers set is part of the second edition of Boston’s Sounds of Italy Festival.  Another festival appearance follows for Chiara in Miami as part of the annual Italian Hit Week on at the North Beach Bandshell.  Washington DC and nation’s capital’s newest hotspot The Hamilton will host closing concert of the run on.

Sunday, October 11, 2015                New York, NY
Joe’s Pub
425 Lafayette Street
New York, NY 10003
Doors: 6:00pm / Show: 7:30pm
Tickets: $15.00 in Advance / $20.00 the Door
(212) 967-7555
Wednesday, October 14, 2015             Boston, MA
Scullers Jazz Clubpart of Sounds of Italy Festival
400 Soldiers Field Rd
Boston, MA 02134
(Doubletree Suites by Hilton Hotel Boston – Cambridge)
Show: 8:00pm
Tickets: $25.00 ($15.00 for Berklee Students)
(617) 562-4111

Sunday, October 18, 2015                Miami Beach, FL
North Beach Bandshellpart of Hit Week
7275 Collins Ave
Miami Beach, FL 33141
Show: 6:00pm – 10:00pm
Admission: Free/Gratis
(305) 672-5202
Monday, October 19, 2015                Washington, DC
The Hamilton
600 14th St NW, Washington, DC 20005Doors: 6:30pm / Show: 7:30pm
Tickets: $16.00
(202) 787-1000

Chiara Civello  - Io che non vivo senza te ft.  Gilberto Gil
Chiara Civello - Io che amo solo te ft.  Chico Buarque

Chiara Civello FaceBook:
Chiara Civello Twitter:
Chiara Civello Bio:

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Italian Garden 2015

My father's garden and fruit trees this year. #Italianamerican #italiangarden #Garden

Posted by Italian American Girl on Thursday, August 27, 2015

Saturday, July 11, 2015

Be Featured on the Italian American Girl Site

If you have an event, press release, book, music, art announcement or product, please message me here to have your...

Posted by Italian American Girl on Saturday, July 11, 2015

Italian American Girl T-Shirts

Italian American Girl T-Shirts! #tshirt #italianamerican

Posted by Italian American Girl on Saturday, July 11, 2015

Saturday, April 18, 2015


Festival Will Spotlight the Regional Premiere of “Do You Remember Me?”
Followed by Celebration of Italian Culture, Fashion and Music

Newport Beach, Calif. (Saturday, April 18, 2015) – On Tuesday, April 28th 2015 the 16th annual Newport Beach Film Festival will present its Italian Spotlight, an evening celebration of Italian cinema and culture. The event will feature the Orange County premiere of the highly acclaimed film, Do You Remember Me? (Ti Ricordi Di Me) (2014), followed by a festive post-screening gala.
Director Rolando Ravello brings together an excellent cast that flawlessly fills Do You Remember Me? with brilliant comedy, wit, and performances that are worthy of praise. A modern fairy tale, the story focuses on two people who meet in their therapist’s office and embark on an unexpected courtship. With its outstanding script and on-screen chemistry, Do You Remember  Me? Is a beautiful film that is both romantic and complex.

“The Festival continues a proud tradition of presenting the very best in Italian Cinema. Do You Remember Me? is a festival and critical favorite. We are very excited to screen Rolando Ravello’s newest work,” stated Gregg Schwenk, CEO of the Newport Beach Film Festival.

The Spotlight film, Do You Remember Me?, will screen on Tuesday, April 28th, 2015 at 7:15 p.m. at Triangle Square Cinemas (1870 Harbor Boulevard, Costa Mesa, CA 92627). The post-screening celebration will take place at the SOCO Courtyard (3303 Hyland Avenue, Costa Mesa, CA 92626).

The event will include select tastings from top Orange County restaurants, traditional entertainment as well as multiple DJs.  Hosted bar by Stella Artois, RΓ©my Cointreau and Tito’s Vodka.
The Newport Beach Film Festival Italian Spotlight is supported by SOCO, Italian Heritage Culture Foundation, Instituto Italiano di Cultura – Los Angeles, L’Italo Americano, Consulate General of Italy – Los Angeles, Italian Film Commission, Italian American Museum Los Angeles, L'Italo-Americano,, and Portal Languages. Admission to the Italian Spotlight film and the post-screening party is $45.00.  Post-screening party only is $30.00
For ticket information and updates visit

About The Newport Beach Film Festival
Celebrated as one of the leading film festivals in the United States, the Newport Beach Film Festival has evolved into a prestigious multicultural event, attracting over 55,000 attendees to Southern California. Committed to enlightening the public with a first-class international film program, a forum for cultural understanding and enriching educational opportunities, the Festival focuses on showcasing a fresh and diverse collection of studio and independent films from around the globe. Located along the pristine Orange County coastline, the Newport Beach Film Festival offers attendees an optimal setting to experience filmmaking at its best. With its action packed slate of film screenings, red carpet galas, international spotlights, nightly receptions, compelling conversations with filmmakers, fashion shows, music performances and industry seminars, the Newport Beach Film Festival has quickly gained recognition among filmmakers and audiences worldwide. The 16th annual Newport Beach Film Festival runs April 23th – 30th, 2015 and will spotlight over 350 films from around the world.

Festival Contact: Italian Spotlight Event Contact:
Cory Ceizler Name: Andrea Zavala
Quartararo & Associates (Q&A) Email:
Cory@QandAMarketing  Phone: (951) 907-0174
(818) 497-7750

Saturday, February 7, 2015


WETA, in Partnership with the National Italian American Foundation, to Hold a Multi-City Screening and Public Discussion Tour

 THE ITALIAN AMERICANS, a new two-part, four-hour documentary series about the Italian experience in America, will premiere on PBS on Tuesdays, February 17 and 24, 2015, 9–11 p.m. ET (check local listings), WETA announced today. The series, written and produced by John Maggio and narrated by Academy Award-nominated actor Stanley Tucci, explores the evolution of Italian Americans from the late nineteenth century to today, from “outsiders” once viewed with suspicion and mistrust to some of the most prominent leaders of business, politics and the arts today.

In support of the broadcast of THE ITALIAN AMERICANS, WETA, the producing public television station for the series, in partnership with National Italian American Foundation (NIAF), the nation’s leading organization for Americans of Italian heritage and a community engagement partner for the project, are organizing public screenings and discussions that will explore Italian contributions to American culture, and how Italians redefined American identity. Screening events are scheduled to take place in New York, Washington, D.C., Miami, Philadelphia, Chicago, Los Angeles and San Francisco.

The tour launched in Seattle on September 23 at NIAF’s annual Festa Italiana Luncheon in conjunction with the NIAF/Frank J. Guarini Media Forum at the Seattle Yacht Club, where filmmaker Maggio served as the keynote speaker and presented the audience with highlights from the series.

THE ITALIAN AMERICANS reveals the unique and distinctive qualities of one immigrant group’s experience, and how these qualities, over time, have shaped and challenged America. Unlike other immigrant groups, many Italians did not come to America to stay. At the turn of the 20th century, most came to work, earn money to support their families, and eventually return home. Nearly half of the first generation Italian immigrants did return to Italy. For those that made America home, their struggle to maintain a distinct Italian culture was guided by remarkably powerful ideals of family that had always been at the center of their lives. In the Italian family, the needs of the collective came before the individual — a value system often at odds with American ideals of freedom and personal choice. While the power of the Italian family became a source of strength, it also bred suspicion, popularized in popular media as a dark, criminal element. This clash of culture echoed through generations of Italian Americans and, as they entered positions of political, social and cultural influence, it has left its mark on the American landscape.

“The first waves of Italian immigrants in this country weren’t embraced very warmly by mainstream society,” said Maggio. “There were basically held at arm’s length and looked upon with a certain amount of disdain and suspicion.  But eventually, the children of those first immigrants, and their children, began to gain a foothold in positions of power, and would become some of the most influential and important leaders of American life in the 20th century.”

Sharon Percy Rockefeller, president and chief executive officer of WETA, said, “This series will share with public television audiences a universal aspect of the immigrant story — the struggle of a group to adapt to a new environment and become participants in American life — while also spotlighting the distinct experience and unique, engaging culture of Italian Americans.”

“Our series strips away the stereotypes about Italian Americans to reveal a complicated and rich narrative, little understood by most Americans,” said Jeff Bieber, executive producer for WETA. “As we have shown in all our initiatives on immigration, American history is far more muddled and chaotic then what is typically taught in school. The more we understand our sometimes troubled past, the stronger we become as a people.”

John M. Viola, president of NIAF, said, “When our NIAF leadership team first had the opportunity to view this film, we were so thrilled to find a project that told our community’s story in an objective and engaging manner.  John Maggio has created the film that I had wished to see for so many years and I believe that everyone in our community who tunes in will find something of themselves and their family in this wonderful project.”

Through extensive archival materials and interviews with scholars and notable Italian Americans such as Tony Bennett, Dion DiMucci, David Chase, Gay Talese and John Turturro, who speak from personal experience, THE ITALIAN AMERICANS tells the story of those who played vital roles in shaping the relationship between Italians and mainstream American society. These include the stories of the following individuals:

Amadeo Giannini, who founded the Bank of Italy in 1904 in San Francisco to help Italians who could not secure loans or financial assistance elsewhere. He would later build it into the largest financial institution in the country and rename it Bank of America.
Arturo Giovannitti, the union activist and poet who led the Lawrence Textile Strike in Lawrence, Massachusetts in 1912.
Rudolph Valentino, who introduced a new image of the sex symbol to movie audiences of the 1920s, yet still endured the prejudices directed at Italians of southern extraction
Joe DiMaggio, who became one of the most celebrated baseball players of his generation, but whose parents were labeled “Enemy Aliens” during World War II.
U.S. Representative Nancy Pelosi, New York Governor Mario Cuomo and Associate Justice Antonin Scalia, who each broke new ground for Italian Americans in public service

The series also presents the expertise and insights of historians, scholars, journalists and authors including Donna Gabaccia, Thomas Guglielmo, Gerald Meyer, Robert Orsi, Mary Anne Trasciatti, Lawrence DiStasi, Bruce Watson, Stephen Fox and Selwyn Raab.
A companion book of the same title by journalist Maria Laurino, published by W.W. Norton, will also be released in December 2014, tied to the project activities.

THE ITALIAN AMERICANS is a production of WETA Washington, D.C., and Ark Media, in association with John Maggio Productions. The series executive producers are Jeff Bieber and Dalton Delan. The series writer and producer is John Maggio. The producers are Muriel Soenens and Julia Marchesi. The music composer is Gary Lionelli. The editors are George O’Donnell and Seth Bomse. The narrator is Stanley Tucci. Special thanks to project community engagement and promotion partner The National Italian American Foundation ( Corporate funding is provided by DelGrosso Foods. Foundation funding is provided by the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Arthur Vining Davis Foundations and the Annenberg Foundation. Major funding is provided by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and by the Public Broadcasting Service.


About WETA
WETA Washington, D.C., is one of the largest producing stations of new content for public television in the United States. WETA productions and co-productions include PBS NEWSHOUR, WASHINGTON WEEK WITH GWEN IFILL, THE KENNEDY CENTER MARK TWAIN PRIZE, IN PERFORMANCE AT THE WHITE HOUSE, and documentaries by filmmaker Ken Burns, including THE STORY OF CANCER: THE EMPEROR OF ALL MALADIES, premiering in Spring 2015. More information on WETA and its programs and services is available at

About NIAF
The mission of the National Italian American Foundation (NIAF) is to serve as a resource for the Italian American Community; to preserve the Italian American heritage and culture; to promote and inspire a positive image and legacy of Italian Americans; and to strengthen and empower ties between the United States and Italy. For more infomraiotn, visit

About PBS
PBS, with its over 350 member stations, offers all Americans the opportunity to explore new ideas and new worlds through television and online content. Each month, PBS reaches nearly 120 million people through television and over 29 million people online, inviting them to experience the worlds of science, history, nature and public affairs; to hear diverse viewpoints; and to take front row seats to world-class drama and performances. PBS’ broad array of programs has been consistently honored by the industry’s most coveted award competitions. Teachers of children from pre-K through 12th grade turn to PBS for digital content and services that help bring classroom lessons to life. PBS’ premier children’s TV programming and its website,, are parents’ and teachers’ most trusted partners in inspiring and nurturing curiosity and love of learning in children. More information about PBS is available at, one of the leading dot-org websites on the Internet, or by following PBS on Twitter, Facebook or through our apps for mobile devices. Specific program information and updates for press are available at or by following PBS Pressroom on Twitter.

About CPB
The Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB), a private, non-profit corporation created by Congress in 1967, is the steward of the federal government’s investment in public broadcasting. It helps support the operations of more than 1,300 locally owned and operated public television and radio stations nationwide, and is the largest single source of funding for research, technology and program development for public radio, television and related online services. More information about CPB is available at

Dan Roberti/Brian Moriarty, Dan Klores Communications (DKC), 212-685-4300;

Monday, December 29, 2014

In Partnership with 'Cinema Made In Italy' Presents New Film - INSIDE THE MIND OF LEONARDO IN 3D

Submarine Deluxe and History Films Present…
Directed by Julian Jones

"With over 6,000 pages of handwritten notes and drawings, Leonardo da Vinci’s private journals are the most comprehensive documents that chronicle the work of the world’s most renowned inventor, philosopher, painter and genius. Inside the Mind of Leonardo uses this precious collection of writings and drawings to recount Da Vinci’s story in his own words, and combines them with stunning visual effects and 3D technology to re-create the mindscape and ideas of mankind’s greatest polymath.

In a powerfully haunting performance, award-winning actor Peter Capaldi portrays Leonardo and dramatically narrates passages and monologues taken directly from the artist’s journals. Capaldi captures the passion of Leonardo’s ambition, his opinion of the world and his views on art and life. From the epic to the ordinary, Inside the Mind of Leonardo explores how Leonardo experienced the world around him. Following a biographical narrative, the feature captures the artist’s thwarted ambitions, hurt, anger –and sexual desire — as documented within his diaries, but also the everyday-ness of normal life: his shopping lists, health tips and even bawdy jokes."

To find a screening near you -

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Italian American Christmas, Food, Family and Love

Merry Christmas to all my Italian American Girl readers, hope you all had an amazing holiday and I'm looking forward to a prosperous and healthy New Year.  This year for Christmas, as we always do my mother and sister baked and cooked some our favorite dishes. I posted a lot of our cookies and traditional cookies on my Facebook page here -- Italian American Girl  My sister is becoming quite the baker with her cookies, which resemble those of my mother's.  My mother fried her traditional zeppole, which obviously are a staple every year.  With each passing year, I get more and more sentimental about the traditions and maintaining the recipes and 'ways' that my mother always did.  Thank God, my sister is the skilled one when it comes to cooking and baking, but for me it's about the company, serving the food and always the right coffee.   This year, we had all of our get togethers, accompanied by Lavazza coffee.  Usually, we have espresso, since they've come out with their new drip coffees, I'm able to offer cafe Americano to my friends as well, who are not so versed in espresso.  There is nothing like the aroma and consistency of this coffee.   If you want to venture into a new coffee for the New Year, I highly recommend.  You can shop Lavazza here  

**This post was sponsored by Lavazza** 

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Going Back to Italy

It's been a long time since I've been back to Italy or my parents home town in  Italy.  The reasons for not going back seem to get more complicated and I seem to get busier with either life or work.  Going to Italy used to very important to me to at least visit once a year.  My parents haven't been back in a while either just for reasons of life, getting older and handling their financial business and issues here.  As I've posted in the past, my parents are in a place now where the time has come where they have to either have sell off or condense their lives.  My parents have always managed to live a modest life, work hard and own their own homes, but are faced with many challenges here in America as seniors.  As the daughter of senior parents it's not easy taking care of all those things, my parents are complex people, who don't like you in their business, but I guess we're past that now, my siblings and I try very hard to be care givers, but as many of you with strong headed people --especially Calabrese parents--- that task is not easy.  It's a very strange day when you realize your once strong parents are getting old, are old and now need your help.  I'm sure throughout your life you get upset with you parents for different reasons and then the day comes when you realize your roles are reversed.  So, getting mad anymore is gone and now we as children have to do our best to take care of our parents, even if we still don't agree with them.. ( I laugh as I write this, because they are so damn stubborn!)

I travel often for either work or pleasure, but it seems lately more domestically, my goal is to get back to Italy soon and do my normal visit and stay in our home town in Italy.  There is nothing like Italy and it's my second home, but America is my first and our lives are here.  I'm sure many children of immigrants struggle with this sort of identity crisis.  I love my Italian family as well and sometimes I get upset when I hear they think Americans live like KINGS, and in essence I feel we work very hard with every reward earned.  Today was a day of reflection and an inside scoop to the journey of getting back to Italy.  I will be in Italy in the next few months, stay tuned.