JUSTICE MASSARO aslim -PRESIDENT
GARY SINISE NATION AWARD
CHEF TROPEPE “STUFFED”
LOUIS LOMBARDI “DOUGH BOYS”
Vol.VI, Iss XVIII
Exclusive Interview with joe pantoliano
Award Winning Actor-Writer-Producer
NATIONAL ITALIAN-AMERICAN LIFESTYLE MAGAZINE
Joe Pantaliano cover story
“I’ve had good judgment when it comes to filmmakers”
Unsung Heroes Part1
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TABLE OF CONTENTS
Editorial + NIAF Journalist......................................1 Joe Pantoliano Exclusive Interview........................2-3 Five Centuries of History................................................ 4 Middle Ages Renaissance.............................................. 5 Jutice Massaro + NIAF + Sinise.............................6-7 Louis Lombardi Theresa Sareo + Cary Capparelli..........................8-9 NIAF News + Travel Tips + C. Palmimteri........10-11 “DoughBoys” Louis Lombardi Interview.................................12-13 Dr. Rosenfeld + Green Tea weight loss................14-15 Lyric Opera.............................................................16-17 Florence center fold.................................................20-21 TONY COSENTINO Monsignor Polizzi....................................................22-23 Chuck Giampa Mother Cabrini + My Italian Family....................24-25 Unsung Heros WWII...........................................26-27 Giuseppe Lombardo + Both Worlds...............28-29 Chef Tropepe...........................................................30-31 Delicious Recipes...........................................................32 Stellino St. Regis hotel.............................................34-35 Luigi Basco...............................................................36-37 Benetton...........................................................................38 Cary Capparelli Ringside report Gimapa............................................40 Puzzle + Lorenzo review......................................42-43 T r a v e l T i p s Restaurant Form.........................................................47 Index+Advertising+Puzzle Solution......................48 JOHN CONEENA
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Copyright © est 2002AMICI JOURNAL PUBLICATIONS, INC. P.O. Box 595, River Grove, IL 60171 www.amiciorgit.net Founders; Terry N. Geraci; Andrew Guzaldo; Salvatore Terranova; Joseph Nugara, Sr. Publishers Amici Journal Publications Inc. Editor/CEO - Andrew Guzaldo Chief Staff Writer - John Rizzo Photographer - Writer Joe Cosentino Creative Designer - Bozhena Martynyak Production Layout -Andrew Guzaldo Publishing Consultant - Joseph Nugara All Rights Reserved. No part of this publication can be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording or by any information storage or retrieval system without written permission of Amici JournalPublications All information contained herein is deemed reliable and is submitted subject to errors, omissions, and to change of price or terms without notice.
n being involved with the Amici Journal, interviews and articles. In meeting the celebrities and the celebrities of the Italian American heritage. It can only give one a milestone of inspiration. Yet at the same time, that one would have difficulty to reach such a plateau. But in speaking to these Iconic individuals, they give an awesome supply of energy for one to succeed. I thank them for this inspiration, that is no other then I have ever felt in my lifetime. I am sure that other cultures are in sequence to my feelings. However I speak of my heritage, the Italian culture. The beauty that surrounds it all with its unforgettable history and all those contributions made to America by those inventors, of genius minds. But lets not forget those immigrants that came to this country, broke their back so they could stay in the free world AMERICA!. To look back and see the beauty that exists in Italy from the Roman colosseum to the vineyards of Sicily. Colorful, rich, bold, romantic; Italy is all this and more. Historically rich, Italy is a cornerstone of today’s western culture. Agriculturally rich, the Italian countryside is a prolific producer of fruit, vegetables, and livestock. With Italys rich culture, Italy has produced the world’s best in art, architecture, music and literature. But Italy’s greatest wealth is its people: the gregarious, charming, Italians that seem to know how to do everything bigger and better. They love their food, their families, their music and their heritage. They exude confidence, charisma and hospitality. Venice has its canals, Rome its colosseum, Florence its heritage of art, Tuscany its color, and the whole country boasts hundreds of miles of seashore; but of all the beautiful and historic sights Italy has to offer, the best treat a visitor will find are the colorful Italian people. Amici Journal reaches out to celebrities, that define our culture. In this edition we once again have a celebrity with a very interesting story. He is the Award winning, actor writer and producer, Joe Pantoliano. We also have another very interesting writer producer, Louis Lombardi he played in the acclaimed series 24. He has also made a movie called Douhghboys. A wonderful family movie that is a must see. In our culinary section this time we have Chef Tropepe. He also is a writer his new book by the name of Stuffed. It brings to the reader an array of recipes that you and your family will enjoy for any season. We are also have the Honorable Supreme Court Justice Dominic Massaro, who has been reelected to a third 2 year term as president of the (ASLIM) American Society of the Italian Legions of Merit. Also as usual we have Michael Ingrisiano and his poignant stories of his experience in WWII. Today we have part 1 of a 2 part series Unsung heroes. Therefore, we will continue to share these legendary, historical memories of those who not only contributed to our shared heritage but to the heritage of the world. These are the stories of true heroes, those that fought for our freedom, against daunting odds, some say evil itself. These heroes gave of themselves to us many years before we realized the pain and anguish they endured. Please Send all correspondence to Amici Journal Publications, Inc. P.O. Box 595, River Grove, IL 60171 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. Look for AMICI JOURNAL in your local stores or order direct at 773836-1595 or call for information on our distribution available program! Sincerely Andrew Guzaldo Executive Editor Amici Journal Michelangelo 1475-1564 “Every block of stone has a statue inside it and it is the task of the sculptor to discover it.”
THE NATIONAL ITALIAN AMERICAN FOUNDATION CHICAGO JOURNALISTS ADVANCE ITALIAN-AMERICAN AGENDA NIAF Media Networking Forum at the National Italian American Sports Hall of Fame ( WASHINGTON , D.C. -- January 15, 2009) A Level Playing Field… The Italian American Agenda in Chicago was the theme of the National Italian American Foundation’s (NIAF) sixth annual media networking forum on January 13, 2009. Prominent community leaders spoke to an audience of more than 30 journalists of Italian ancestry about the importance of preserving the rich history of Italian Americans and raising awareness of its culture. The luncheon, underwritten by The National Italian American Sports Hall of Fame (NIASHF), was hosted by George R. Randazzo, founder and president of the NIASHF, and Robert V. Allegrini, NIAF regional vice president for the Midwest and vice president of corporate communications for the Americas of the Hilton Hotels Corporation. The event was co-chaired by James J. Corno, president of Comcast SportsNet Chicago, and Miriam Di Nunzio, weekend editor of the Chicago Sun-Times. NIAF Executive Director James R. De Santis opened the luncheon and thanked the journalists for their continued support in encouraging young people to value their culture while instilling an interest in all things Italian. De Santis was joined by NIAF area coordinators Gerard V. Centioli, John C. Sciaccotta and James A. Tognoni . Dominic Di Frisco, president emeritus of the Joint Civic Committee of Italian Americans, Alessandro Motta, Italy ’s Consul General in Italy , and Melissa Tussing , a participant of the NIAF Voyage of Discovery program, also attended the event. In order to build upon this agenda, as well as energize the ItalianAmerican community, Allegrini called upon four respected community leaders to showcase their noteworthy projects for 2009: • John Nitti, chairman of Cook Italy , outlined how he is teaching disadvantaged children at Mercy Home how to prepare and enjoy Italian dishes while learning about healthy nutrition; • Fulvio Calciardi, executive director of the Italian American Chamber of Commerce, highlighted the events surrounding the third annual Italian-Style show promoting the rich culture of Italy and Italian Americans which will be held July 17-19 at Navy Pier; • Paula Waters of The Milan Chicago Sister City Committee, discussed the more than 20 year sister-city partnership between the cities of Chicago and Milan that continues to foster cultural, business and educational exchanges; • George Randazzo announced the release of the upcoming film “Bravissimo,” an in-depth study of Italian Americans in sports. Similar media events are planned in February in Phoenix , Los Angeles and San Francisco
The National Italian American Foundation (NIAF) is a non-profit organization based in Washington , D.C. , dedicated to preserving the heritage of Italian Americans. Visit www.niaf.org.
Spring 09 / AMICI 1
“hello” from the voice on the other end of the phone sounded familiar. I introduced myself. Then I heard, in character, “In a sluggish economy, never (expletive deleted) with another man’s livelihood … Joel you’re a smart kid so I’m going to tell you something which I think you’ll understand …” “Remember that line?” says Joe Pantoliano, known to friends and fans as “Joey Pants”, laughingly breaking character to bring things back to reality. It was 25 years ago that Pantoliano, as Guido, the killer pimp, made that line famous in the 1983 movie “Risky Business”. Guido said this to Joel, an enterprising teenager from the north shore of Chicago, played by a then young up-and-coming actor named Tom Cruise. A 25th anniversary platinum DVD of the movie that was filmed in Chicago is coming out. It’s complete with interviews from several of the principles including Cruise, Rebecca De Mornay – who played Lana, the love interest – and, of course, Pantialiano, then an up-and-coming actor. Cruise attracted moviegoers. The alluring De Mornay made them watch it. But it was Pantoliano who made people remember it. “Actually, it was the beginning of a wonderful career,” says Pantoliano. “Here I am after 30 years still making a living doing movies. I love every aspect of it. “Risky Business” was the first big hit studio movie I ever did.” Prior to that I did other films, but “Risky Business” put me on the map.” Pantoliano’s map is filled with more than 120 films with dozens of memorable roles, including several filmed in Chicago: “Risky Business”, “Running Scared”, “Midnight Run”, “The Fugitive”, “Baby’s Day Out”, and “U.S. Marshals”. Additionally, he had a guest role in the Chicago-based made for television series, “Chicago Story”, where he met and became friends with Chicago-born actor Dennis Franz in 1982. “The City of Chicago was wonderful. It was like going home,” Pantoliano recalls. “It’s a very sophisticated city, but very friendly. At that time Chicago was having the best sports decade ever.” “When I did “U.S. Marshals”, Joe Pesci (1991 Academy Award winner for Best Actor in a Supporting Role in “Goodfellas”) was in town. We’d go out to dinner all the time. I maintain a lot of friendships in Chicago that mean a lot to me.” Pantoliano wants to see Illinois continue to be competitive with other states in attracting production companies to make more films in Illinois. For that reason, Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich in May signed legislation that renews the Illinois Film Tax Credit. Present at the signing were film actors and directors, including “The Sopranos” actor Frank Vincent. The tax credit brings revenue and jobs to the state by offering a 20 percent tax credit to filmmakers for money spent for Illinois’ goods and services including wages paid to Illinois residents. The Film Tax Credit puts Illinois back on the film industry’s map and helped Illinois achieve record revenues of $155 million for 2007,” said Gov. Blagojevich. Additionally, the filming of movies in Illinois provided more than 26,000 job-hires for the state.” Pantoliano was born on Sept. 12, 1951 in Hoboken, N.J., birthplace of a very famous singer named Frank Sinatra. He was the only son of Dominic and 2 AMICI / Spring 09
Mary Pantoliano, a part-time seamstress and bookie. Mary left Dominic for her distant cousin, Florio, when Pantoliano was 12. He and his younger sister Maryann grew up throughout northern New Jersey with their mother and Florio, who they considered their stepfather. Pantoliano suffered severe dyslexia and was still reading at the third-grade level when he was 17. Overcoming these obstacles, growing up in a tough neighborhood in New Jersey, and his family’s financial limitations forged an inner strength that characterized his life and his success in films. “When you grow up broke, there’s only one thing that determines who you are as a person and that’s if you are a standup guy,” says Pantoliano. “If you owe a guy $20 and you don’t pay it back, everyone knows you can’t be trusted.” Florio saw him perform in a high school play and suggested he pursue acting as a profession. Pantoliano moved to Manhattan, where he took acting classes and went to auditions while working as a waiter. After four years, he moved west where he picked up a few acting jobs that got him recognized and led to a part in the NBC miniseries adaptation of James Joyce’s “From Here to Eternity” in 1979. Ironically, he played the part of Angelo Maggio, the role originated by Sinatra in the 1953 movie version, which won him the 1954 Academy Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role. Friend and actor Chazz Palminteri told him that Sinatra had once said referring to Pantoliano, “That poor (SOB) ain’t ever gonna be the most famous guy from Hoboken.” “I sat across the aisle from Sinatra at a theater in New York one time,” says Pantoliano. “I never went up to him; I was so intimidated. It was a missed opportunity.” Pantoliano picked up more and more film work. Although he admits to having no musical talent, he had key roles in several films that featured music, “The Idolmaker”, “Eddie and the Cruisers”, “La Bamba”, and “The In Crowd”. Along the way he added several stage and television roles. In 1983, he was in “Risky Business” and things started to happen at a brisk pace culminating in 1996 with “Bound”, a film by Andy and Larry Wachowski. It was their debut film and also starred Jennifer Tilly and Gina Gershon. Pantoliano’s performance in “Bound” led to the role as Cypher in “Matrix”, another Wachowski Bros. film. “The Wachowski’s are my favorite filmmakers of all time,” he says. Shortly afterwards, he worked with director Christopher Nolan in the sleeper-hit, “Momento” with Carrie-Anne Moss in 2000. Then he was offered the role of Ralph Cifaretto in producer David Chase’s HBO hit series, “The Sopranos” in 2001. “I built a career that way,” said Pantoliano. “I been very lucky to have the people – not material, not screenplays – which I wanted to surround myself with. I’ve read a lot of screenplays and been with people that gave me a bad feeling. “If you look at my career, I picked out people involved in their first project like the Wachowski Bros.,
Christopher, Andrew Davis, and Taylor Hackford. I’ve had good judgment when it comes to filmmakers. I can tell with only a five-minute conversation.” Pantoliano joined “The Sopranos” in its third season when the show was already a huge hit. He met with Chase who told him his character, Ralph Cifaretto, was going to be an adversary to mafia boss Tony Soprano, played by James Gandolfini, and would lose the battle for power with Tony. He took the role immediately because of Chase. The entire cast and crew of “The Sopranos” were a close-knit group during the running of the series. Pantoliano was glad to be a part of that and enjoyed working with Gandolfini. “They really worked him. He’s in every frame,” says Pantoliano. “He is one of the top five actors I ever worked with. He’s one of the most generous people I’ve ever know.” Their characters in the series engaged in a classic confrontation after two seasons. The volatile relationship exploded following a suspicious fire that destroyed a racehorse in which they had a shared interest. Tony confronted Ralph in the kitchen of his home and a heated exchange burst into one of the most violent fight scenes ever portrayed in the annals of television. “The thing is there were no special effects involved,” says Pantoliano. “It was just physical whacking the crap out of each other. We were using frying pans that were made of rubber like oldfashioned filmmaking. When we did it, I didn’t think it would have such an impact. When I saw it, I wasn’t as impressed as everyone else … but it had a big impression on the viewers.” In 2003, Pantoliano received an Emmy for his performance in “The Sopranos”. He never thought he could win since generally villains usually don’t get rewarded. He didn’t do the politicking and lobbying that goes along with getting nominated. No one was more surprised than Pantoliano when he won the Emmy for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series. It was while making “The Sopranos” that Pantoliano wrote his first book “Who’s Sorry Now: The True Story of a Stand-up Guy (Dutton, 2002)”. The book is a touching chronicle of his youth in Hoboken. He details in the book how it was growing up in a Hoboken public housing project. He describes watching his father and mother destroying their marriage, running “numbers” for his chain-smoking mother to put food on the table and learning street smarts from Florio. Florio was connected to the powerful Genovese family and spent time in prison for drug trafficking. Pantoliano paints a colorful picture of the characters that passed through his life in an Italian family and neighborhood with warmth, charm and respect. It truly becomes in the author’s own words, his “love story.”
He is planning a second book to deal with his own battle with mental illness – clinical depression. “It can be managed and the individual can lead a productive life,” says Pantoliano. “I do talk, exercise, and pharmaceutical therapy. I do a 12-step program with a sponsor that I talk to … It’s really behavior modifications. “My mother was diagnosed bi-polar. Unfortunately, I thought she was like that. It wasn’t until about 30 years after she died that I understood she was ill and that it wasn’t a behavior of choice. I was saddened that I could have helped her more.” Pantoliano started an organization to help others with their mental illnesses. He founded the non-profit organization, “No Kidding, Me Too!” The purpose of the organization is to remove the stigma attached to brain disease through education and breaking down social barriers. Hopefully through recognizing their problem, individuals will seek treatment and become productive citizens. “No Kidding, Me Too!” has several of Pantoliano’s closest friends in show business on its advisory board, including Chicago-born actor Joe Mantegna and Edie Falco from “The Sopranos”. More information on the organization’s efforts or to make a donation can be found on its web site at www.Nokiddingmetoo.org. In 2007, Pantoliano produced and starred in a movie, “Canvas”, written and directed by Joseph Greco, about mental illnesses. Pantoliano plays John Marino, a construction worker, who tries to help his wife, Mary – played by Marcia Gay Harden, 2001 Academy Award winner for Best Actress in a Supporting Role in “Pollock” – cope with schizophrenia. Their son Chris played by Devon Gearhart is having a difficult time trying to understand his mother’s behavior. After Mary is hospitalized, John must hold the family together. He and Chris start building a boat in their backyard. The project creates a renewed bond between father and son. Together they come to terms with Mary’s illness and become a loving family again. Pantoliano claims the movie was therapeutic in helping him understand and deal with his own mental illnesses. “Being diagnosed with mental illness is the greatest gift that I have had,” says Pantoliano. “I have serenity in my life now.” “Doctors said it wasn’t my fault. My brain was doing what it was doing. Do you know that 80 to 90 percent of the people with mental illness can get better? One-third of them go undiagnosed.” He lives with his wife Nancy and their four children, Marco, Melody, Daniella, and Isabella in Connecticut. “We have a beautiful life,” says Pantoliano. “I thank God everyday that I’m healthy. My life was so shattered I couldn’t appreciate the good things that were happening to me.”
John Bongiovi, singer/ musician/ songwriter “Jon Bon Jovi” is born in New Jersey and becomes one of the highest paid entertainers. Dan Marino, Football Hall of Fame is born in Pittsburgh. The Miami Dolphins’ great becomes the NFL’s all-time leader in career touchdown passes, passing yards, attempts and completions.
“Nick” LaRocca, Creator of Jazz, dies at the age of 72. Louie Amstrong, in his autobiography, says this about La Rocca and his “Original Dixieland Jazz Band”: “Only four years before I learned to play the trumpet . . . the first great jazz orchestra was formed in New Orleans by a cornet player named Dominic James LaRocca.”
Angela Bamace, President Kennedy names Angela Bambace to his Commission on the Status of Women. Bambace is a top organizer for the ladies garment workers and was once pushed down a flight of stairs by an irate employer upset with her union activities.
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Jack Valenti, Texan Jack Valenti, a decorated war hero, is close to Johnson in the historic photograph. Valenti becomes an influential “Special Assistant” to the President. In 1966 Valenti presides over a multibillion dollar industry as president of the Motion Picture Association. Brian Boitano, Olympic gold medalist, two-time world champion, four-time United States’ national champion, and the first skater ever to land a triple axel in men’s ice skating, is born in Mountain View, California.
Paul P. Rao, is U.S. Federal Judge appointed Chief Justice of the United States Custom Court by President Lyndon Johnson. Previously, Rao campaigns against the impending wartime internment of Itlalian aliens in detention camps, finally persuading U.S. Attorney General Francis Biddle to issue a government policy barring the consideration of Italian nationals as “enemy aliens”. Brooke Shields, born in New York. Her grandmother was international beauty, Princess Maria Torlonia of Rome.
Middle Ages and
Renaissance Traditionally, the beginning of theBy Christian in Sulmona is set Andrewage Guzaldo in the 3rd century AD. The city was part of the diocese of Valva, while a Sulmonese bishop is known from the 5th century. Sulmona became a free commune under the Normans. Under Frederick II of Hohenstaufen the town received an aqueduct, one of the most important construction of the era in the Abruzzo; the emperor made it the capital of a large province, as well the seat of a tribunal and of a fair, which it however lost with the arrival of the Angevines. Despite that, it continued to expand and a new line of walls was added in the 14th century. In the 16th century a flourishing industry of paper was started. In 1706 the city was nearly razed to the ground by an earthquake. While, much of the medieval city was destroyed by the earthquake, some remarkable buildings survive such as the Church of Santa Maria della Tomba, the Palazzo Annunziata, the Aqueduct and the Gothic portal on Corso Ovidio. Much of the city was then rebuilt in the prevailing elegant Baroque style of the 18th Century. Sulmona experienced an economic boom in the late 19th Century due its railway hub and strategic geographic position between Rome and the Adriatic coast. This strategic position also made it a target for air raids during World War II. The railway station, the industrial sections and parts of the old town were damaged, but today they have been mostly restored. Campo 78 at Sulmona served as a POW camp in both world wars. During World War I, it housed Austrian prisoners captured in the Isonzo and Trentino campaigns; during World War II, it was home to as many as 3,000 British and Commonwealth officers and other ranks captured in North Africa. The camp itself was built on a hillside and consisted of a number of brick barracks surrounded by a high wall. During World War II, conditions in Sulmona, as in many Italian camps, were good, especially in the two officers’ compounds. Regular rations of macaroni soup and bread were augmented by fresh fruit and cheese in the summer, and food parcels from the International Committee of the Red Cross were distributed regularly. For recreation, the prisoners laid out a football field, and they also had equipment for cricket and basketball. There was a theater, a small lending library, at least one band, and a newspaper produced by a group of prisoners. In September 1943, as the Italian government neared collapse, the inmates of Sulmona heard rumors that the evacuation of the camp was imminent. They awoke one morning to discover that their guards had deserted them. On 14 September, German troops arrived to escort the prisoners northwards, to captivity in Germany, but not before hundreds of them had escaped into the hills. View of the city's center. Sulmona has various piazzas, churches and palaces of historical and tourist interest. Some of these include:·Cattedrale di San Panfilo. The city's cathedral, sitting on the northwest side of the old city and was built on the site of a Roman temple. It contains a crypt which retains its Romanesque appearance despite the 18th Century renovation of the main church. ·Piazza XX Settembre.
One of the main squares of the city, including a bronze statue of the Roman poet Ovid. ·Corso Ovidio. The city's main thoroughfare connects the cathedral and the major piazzas and is lined by elegant covered arcades, shops, cafes, palaces and churches. ·Palazzo Annunziata and Chiesa della SS. Annunziata. The Palace contains a fine museum showing the Roman history of the city as well as various artifacts. The church is a fine example of Baroque architecture and has a beautiful interior and bell tower. ·Piazza Garibaldi is the largest square in town with a large baroque era fountain. A Palio style medieval festival and horse race known as the Giostra Cavalleresca takes place here every year in the Summer. At Easter, crowds gather to witness the Madonna che Scappa. This ceremony involves the procession of a statue of the Madonna who is carried across the square while the bearers run to encounter a statue of the resurrected Christ on the other side of the square. On the south side of the Piazza is the 12th Century Gothic aqueduct. The square hosts a market twice a week on Wednesdays and Saturdays. The remains of the ancient city are of little interest as ruins, but indicate the existence of a considerable town; among them are the vestiges of an amphitheatre, a theatre, and thermae, all of them located outside the gates of the modern city. About 3 km from here, at the foot of the Monte Morrone, are some ruins of reticulated masonry, probably belonging to a Roman villa, traditionally believed to be Ovid's.
Spring 09 / AMICI 5
JUSTICE DOMINIC MASSARO Re-Elected ASILM President What is arguably the most exclusive Italian American entity in the United States - its members are qualified on merit by the Italian Government and each is conferred with a decree of knighthood by the President of Italy has re-elected New York Supreme Court Justice Dominic R. Massaro - to an unprecedented third two-year term of office as its president. His re-election will make him the longest serving Society president since its founding five decades ago. Headquartered in New York City, the American Society of the Italian Legions of Merit is comprised solely of those 600 individuals residing here who have been so decorated. It engages in chivalric, diplomatic and beneficent activity in furtherance of the friendship between the United States and Italy. Justice Massaro is one of only a dozen Americans of Italian descent to hold Italy’s highest decoration - - Cav. di Gran Croce della Repubblica Italiana. His presidency is credited with having totally revamped the Society. The American Society of the Italian Legions of Merit serves as the chief reference point in the United States for all links between the chivalric world of the Italian state and its decorati resident here. Now in its fifth decade, the Society is comprised of those individuals who, because of some personal quality or the rendering of some special service, have been decorated by the Republic of Italy. The decorations are conferred in one of five Orders of Chivalry awarded by decree of the President of Italy (who by virtue of office is “Head” of all Italian Orders), each internationally recognized as rooted in the umbilicus of Italian history and as a prerogative of Italian sovereignty. Founded on the basis of strengthening the traditional bonds of friendship existing between Italy and the United States, the Society is national in scope, international in spirit, and functions at the highest levels of the chivalric, diplomatic and beneficent arenas. Historically providing financial assistance to a wide range of cultural and humanitarian endeavors both here and abroad, its prestige as a pre-eminent institution, headquartered in New York, ranks the Society as an important American situs for focusing the shared interests of both nations to a wider audience. Justice Dominic R. Massaro is a “highly qualified” nominee to the state judiciary by Governor Cuomo in 1986, an “Outstanding Young Man of America” chosen by the United States Jaycees as far back as 1964; he has since enjoyed a 40-year career filled with important public service as a member of the bar, jurist, author and lecturer. He is the recipient of four earned degrees: a bachelor’s in economics, a master’s in government, a second master’s in criminal justice and doctorate in Jurisprudence; and has been awarded numerous doctoral degrees, honoris causa, in laws, letters and judicial administration. Accorded the rank of “Academic” by the Pontifical Tiberian Academy in Rome, he is a Woodrow Wilson Visiting Fellow out of Princeton, ‘and lectures annual1y on both sides of the Atlantic on comparative constitutional law. He is a trustee of the American University of Rome. The judge served first as a New York city then state human rights commissioner during the administration of Governor Rockefeller. President Nixon named him to the United States Appeals Board of the Selective Service System. He served as U.S. Regional Director of the Agency for Voluntary Service - (Peace Corps, Vista, Older American Programs), with jurisdiction from New York to the Caribbean, during the Ford 6 AMICI / Spring 09
Administration. A Major in the Judge Advocate General Corps of the Army New York Guard, he is completing 13 years as Principal Representative of the American Judges Association at the U.N. President of the Catholic Students Association while an undergraduate at N.Y.U., he later served for 20 years as chairman of the Cardinal’s Committee on the Italian Apostolate of the Archdiocese of New York. The jurist was named “Catholic New Yorker” in 1986. Published in legal and scholastic journals, his 1991 treatise, Cesare Beccaria- The Father of Criminal Justice: His Impact on Anglo-American Jurisprudence, received the International Dorso Prize. He is listed in Who’s Who in American Law and The American Bench. In 1994, the jurist was the joint recipient of the “Lehman-LaGuardia Award in Civil Rights” by the Order Sons of Italy in America and the Anti-Defamation League of B’nai B’rith. UNICO National gave him its “Rizzutto Award,” the organization’s highest, in 1995. OSIA conferred him with its highest “Bene Emeritus” membership designation, also in 1995. The recipient of the Police Honor Legion of the City of New York, he also holds the Congressional Medal of Merit and the Ellis Island Medal of Honor. Justice Massaro is a past president of the National Commission for Social Justice. He is perhaps the community’s most articulate spokesman for the non-marginalization of Italy in any plan to reorganize the U.N. Security Council. He recently served as chairman of the Antonio Meucci Memorial Committee in the successful campaign for Congressional recognition of the true inventor of the telephone. A long-time director of the National Italian American Foundation (NIAF) in Washington, D.C., he is chairman emeritus of the Conference of Presidents of Major Italian American Organizations. Currently, he serves as a director of the Casa Italiana ZerilliMarimo at New York University; of the Italian Government school for North America, La Scuola d, Italia Guglielmo Marconi; and of the Fiorello H. La Guardia Foundation, all in New York. As a historian, the jurist is credited with the establishment of both the Sons of Italy Archives (1989) and the NIAF Archives (2004) at the In1ll1igration History Research Center at the University of Minnesota. In the world of chivalry, his credentials are impressive: he has been decorated with orders knighthood on 14 occasions. In addition to the grand cross of Italy, he has been conferred with four other grand crosses: by The Vatican, Sovereign Military Order of Malta, Roman Catholic Church, and the Organization of Latin American States.
President George W. Bush stands with Gary Sinise after presenting him with the 2008 Presidential Citizens Medal, Dec. 10, 2008, in the Oval Office of the White House. White House photo by Chris Greenberg. WASHINGTON -- President George W. Bush bestowed Presidential Citizen Medals on a figure from the Watergate scandal, the librarian of Congress and the actor known as Lieutenant Dan in the 1994 Academy Awardwinning movie “Forrest Gump.” In total, the president recognized 23 individuals and one posthumously on Wednesday with the second highest honor for a civilian, second only to the Presidential Medal of Freedom. The awards were conferred in the Oval Office in a private ceremony. Bush recognized Charles Colson, the first member of the Nixon administration to serve prison time for Watergate-related offenses. After being released from Maxwell prison in Alabama, Colson founded Prison Fellowship in 1976, which conducts outreach to prisoners, former convicts, crime victims and their families. “For more than three decades, Chuck Colson has dedicated his life to sharing the message of God’s boundless love and mercy with prisoners, former prisoners and their families,” the White House said in the citation. “Through
his strong faith and leadership, he has helped courageous men and women from around the world make successful transitions back into society.” Colson was counsel to President Richard M. Nixon from 1969-73. Although he was never charged or prosecuted for the June 1972 break-
in of Democratic headquarters at the Watergate Hotel, Colson did enter a guilty plea to Watergate-related charges. In 1974, he pleaded guilty to obstruction of justice in the case of the break-in at the offices of Daniel Ellsberg’s psychiatrist. Ellsberg had angered the Nixon administration when he released the Pentagon Papers, a secret Pentagon study of the Vietnam War, to The New York Times and other news organizations. Colson served seven months of a one-tothree year sentence. Watergate forced Nixon to resign the presidency Another recipient, actor Gary Sinise, played the double-amputee Vietnam War veteran in the Tom Hanks’ movie “Forrest Gump.” To television viewers, he’s better known as a star of CBS’ “CSI: NY.” After receiving his medal, Sinise told reporters that he had volunteered to help the USO after the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, sending school supplies to Iraqi children. The White House cited him as a humanitarian and a patriot. “I’m deeply touched to receive this medal,” Sinise said.
LA DOLCE VITA THIS SUMMER SCHOLARSHIPS now AVAILABLE FOR YOUTH TO ATTEND ITALIAN LANGUAGE CAMP (WASHINGTON, DC--- January 16, 2009) The National Italian American Foundation (NIAF) has awarded $70,000 to Lago del Bosco, the only Italian language and culture immersion camp in the United States. The NIAF awards, raised during the Foundation’s 33rd Anniversary Gala in October, will support individual scholarships; curriculum writing and staff travel stipends for the Italian Language Village near Fosston, Minn. Deadline for scholarship applications: February 28, 2009. “The Foundation’s awards continue to give youngsters an opportunity to learn Italian and understand how Italian culture has influenced many aspects of their everyday lives,” NIAF President Salvatore J. Zizza said. Launched in July 2003, Lago del Bosco is part of Concordia Language Villages. The residential summer camp helps young people ages 7-14 learn about all aspects of Italian life, history and culture. Participants, called “villagers,” study Italian language and culture in
a relaxed environment where they learn by “living the language.” Villagers participate in authentic cultural activities, cook Italian food, play bocce ball and roverino, make masks, and learn about Italian music and folk tales – all in Italian. The camp is appropriate for participants with any level of Italian language proficiency, including beginners with no prior knowledge. In addition to the one- and two-week sessions, the Minnesota site offers a high school credit program in which villagers can earn one year of high school credit after a four-week session. Villagers increase cultural understanding as they learn about countries where Italian is spoken and the global issues affecting these areas. Since 1961 Concordia Language Villages has offered summer language immersion camps for young people ages 7-18. Today, more than 11,000 youth, families and adults from all 50 states and 32 countries attend programs in 15 languages annually. To apply online, go to www.lagodelbosco.com. For registration materials, employment opportunities, or learn more about Lago del Bosco, visit www.ConcordiaLanguageVillages.org or call 1-800-222-4750.
The National Italian American Foundation (NIAF) is a non-profit organization based in Washington, D.C., and dedicated to preserving the heritage of Italian Americans. Visit www.niaf.org
Spring 09 / AMICI 7
THERESA SAREO AT JAMES A HALEY VA. HOSPITAL
Theresa Sareo beside courageous Wounded soldier Joel Tavera…at Haley VA Hospital By Andrew Guzaldo
heresa Sareo had a wonderful, busy season with very special performances, including her first speaking engagement performance for the United States Army at Ft. Bragg in North Carolina. Fort Bragg is the largest Army installation in the world, providing a home to almost 10 % of the Army’s active component forces. There is a wonderful community at Ft. Bragg whereas its city revolves around the military and their families, including the wounded population. And while there Sareo met retired Brigadier General who is from Elmira! She looks forward to returning in the year 2009 to maybe even take a helicopter ride with the Golden Knights! Theresa Sareo Gave Thanks Ed Carnes and Sharon Lewis for this incredible opportunity. Over Thanksgiving, she visited her brother Mike in the Tampa/ St. Pete region of Florida and while there, made a very moving visit to the James A. Haley VA Hospital in Tampa. I had the honor of doing a concert for many of the veterans, which include generations of men, and women who have served in WWII, Korea, Vietnam, Desert Storm and Iraq/Afghanistan. Before the concert, she was asked to do a private performance on the hospital’s Spinal Chord Injury Ward for a wounded soldier named Joel. Joel was hit by an IED in Iraq and suffered burns over 60% of his body, lost a limb, has TBI (traumatic brain injury) and also became blind. But he is fighting courageously everyday with his very loving parents Maritza and Jose at his side and still has his hearing and loves music. So at the request of his mom and dad, she stood over his bed and sang the very poignant 8 AMICI / Spring 09
song“Through A Soldier’s Eyes” and “I Live.” “ Needless to say, It was one of the most moving moments of my life” says Theresa and afterward, the very gracious Joel told her that he “...in fact, loved it.” Theresa learned that James A. Haley VA Hospital is the largest TBI Center in the country, a fact that the general population is not aware of. Our soldiers with TBI are being treated there and the Rehabilitation Therapy Ward is a wonderful place with an incredibly special staff. Since many of you were inquiring about sending cards to our troops for the Holiday Season, Theresa would love to recommend this facility-and if you are so inclined, please make a donation to their very devoted Recreational Therapy ward. This is what your money would provide:” replies Theresa When patients are medically stable and ready. The ward will take them in to the community and re-enter them slowly with the following in mind; Socialization, becoming aware of their surroundings, re-learn how to deal with the general public, money management PTSD issues are addressed, to become more independent physically and mentally, to manage (with some patients) body image while in the community work on decision-making skills, increase focus and concentration, practice their route finding skills (no GPS allowed), managing a wheelchair in the community -Provide them with money to purchase lunch or items of need. Many times patients arrive to the hospital without clothes and even if they had any they wouldn’t fit due to their injury so we try to provide for them. Family members have taken leave from their jobs or even quit their jobs to care for their loved ones. When patients get to the point that they can get out we try to take them to the movies, concerts, etc. and many times we must pay for these services. If you would like to make a donation, please make check out to “Recreation Therapy.” They did not ask Theresa Sareo to do this, it was a request coming from her in honor to her very special friend Joel and his parents. Theresa Sareo says “I was very impressed by the selfless and unnoticed work Mary Donovan and this Ward is doing for our wounded, and your donation will make a real difference. Many thanks from the bottom of my heart.” You can send cards and letters to: WOUNDED SOLDIER AT JAMES A. HALEY VAMC RECREATION THERAPY #117 13000 BRUCE B. DOWNS BLVD. TAMPA, FL 33612
++ more information go to www.globalsecurity.org/military/facility/fort-bragg.htm www.visn8.med.va.gov/Tampa/default.asp www.theresasareo.com
CARY CAPPARELLI ++
CA RY CA P PA R E L L I
PUSHES FORWARD TO REPRESENT THE ITALIAN AMERICANS IN ILLINOIS
the 1900’s Italian Americans began to be a part of the democratic process of America. Many already had jobs working for various major cities during the late 1890s. Nonetheless, these jobs usually were low rank positions and involved hard labor. In the early part of 1900’s Italian Americans became strongly involved in politics in cities like Chicago and New York. As a Cary Capparelli result, they also began to beneA choice you can count on! fit from political patronage. For Italian Americans, this resulted in life sustaining jobs to provide for their families. By the late 1900’s Italian Americans had become a beneficial voting block in many large cities throughout the United States. Italians began to run for political offices themselves. By the 1940’s some of these offices were as high as Mayors in cities in Chicago, New York, San Francisco. As time passed the political involvement began to include those second and third generation Italian Americans. After many years of perseverance, dedication and hard work Italian Americans had become a very important asset to the democratic political process in the United States. Following in this great heritage of devotion to country, Cary Capparelli wants to fill the vacant seat in the 5th Congressional District of Illinois. Capparelli wants to represent the people of this district, of which many are Italian Americans, not as Democrat or Republican but as a proud American following a legacy of Italian Americans who have served our country. The last two U.S. Congressmen of Italian ancestry that represented the Chicago area were the late Frank Annunzio and Marty Russo. Congressman Annunzio, who was also Chairman of the House Administration Committee, served from 1965 to 1993. Congressman Russo served from 1975 to 1993. Both happened to be Democrats. These Veteran Chicago Area lawmakers were basically remapped out of office after the 1990 census cost Illinois two seats in Congress. Currently, only one Italian American from Illinois who is a member of the U.S. House of Representatives is Donald Manzullo. Manzullo has been a Republican member of the United States House of Representatives since 1993, representing Illinois's 16th congressional district from northwestern Illinois. From 2001 to 2006 Manzullo oversaw the Committee on Small Business as chairman. Despite a large base of Italian Americans in the Metropolitan Chicago Area, the Italian American community has not had one of its own in the United States House of Representatives since 1993. Unlike the gains made by Afro American, Hispanic, Irish and Jewish communities, Chicago’s Italian American community has remained under-represented. This lack of representation has created apathy within the Italian American community. The community has lost valuable influence locally and in Washington. This is why there is a great need for Italian Americans to come together again, and express their real and valuable strength. As a
By Andrew Guzaldo
large portion and voting block of the Chicago Area Metropolitan population, the Italian American community is entitled to equal representation. The Italian American community is also vastly under-represented in Springfield where only Democrat James DeLeo, is the most prominent member of the Illinois Senate and Republican Angelo ‘Skip’ Saviano, is a leader in the Illinois House of Representatives. Both represent districts covering Chicago and its surrounding suburbs. As in the cases of Congressmen Annunzio and Russo, gerrymandering is mostly to blame for the severe under-representation of the Italian American Community. The practice of Gerrymandering re-configures districts differing widely in size race and population. This practice has allowed for greater representation for some minorities, while it has hindered other ethnic groups in particular Italian-Americans. Because gerrymandering basically is creating new boundaries that split its neighborhoods along cultural lines that are not always clear cut, it can cause a lack of interest by disenfranchised voting blocks that are minorities within minority groups. This has caused inability to mobilize these voters. Over time it has become less likely that an Italian American could be elected into political office in these re-configured areas of Chicago. Although, difficult a good Italian American candidate with strong credentials can still be a viable candidate if the community can find a way to discourage cultural bias and embrace equality. While this probably is highly unlikely for a U.S. Senate seat from Illinois or even Governor of the state, it is certainly a reasonable possibility in many local municipalities, State House and Senate seats not to mention, even in the U.S. House of Representatives. The key is for the community to identify a strong candidate they can uniformly support and then follow through with that support. As a voting block Italian Americans can achieve a greater sense of pride by electing one of their own who embodies the principled and highly-qualified candidate to represent all. There are already several politicians and business people stating a desire to run for this vacant seat in the 5th Congressional District. One of them is an Italian-American. Cary Capparelli, International businessman, and son to Ralph Capparelli, the retired 17-term member of the Illinois House of Representatives. Cary has expressed an interest and has made an official announcement for his Candidacy in early December of 08. Capparelli, who presently is a doctoral candidate at the University of London, is well educated and vastly experienced in global business. He recently returned from Argentina where he headed a group that purchased vineyard properties. Capparelli said, in a news release, that he would bring a fresh perspective to Washington because he is not your typical politician. He can be exactly what the Italian-American community need, someone who embodies the principled and highly-qualified candidate that would represent all. Since “Change” is today’s mantra, then the Italian American Community needs to change its under-representation and support a new direction and leadership that will restore our political strength as embodied in our ethnic voting block. view www.carycapparelliforcongress.com for all updates on this announcement.
Spring 09 / AMICI 9
NIAF News Monthly
A monthly bulletin for Italian American organizations and media outlets, dedicated to promoting the language, culture and traditions of Italians and Italian Americans.
Celebrate the 400th Anniversary of Galileo’s Discoveries In honor of the 400th anniversary of Galileo’s astronomical discoveries and the International year of Astronomy, the city of Philadelphia will host an exclusive world appearance of “Galileo, Medici and the Age of Astronomy.”The one-time exhibition in the United States, to be held at The Franklin Institute, was created in partnershipwith the Instituto e Museo di Storia della Scienza in Florence, Italy. Florence, also, is a sister city to Philadelphia. The exhibition’s highlights include one of only two existing Galileo telescopes and marks the first time that the telescope has left Italy. It will shed light on the union of art, science and political power that gave rise to Galileo’s success. “The display of Galileo’s original telescope symbolizes the cooperative spirit between our sister cities and their cultural institutions,” said Prof. Paolo Galluzzi, director of the Istituto e Museo di Storia della Scienza in Florence. The exhibit will remain in Philadelphia from Aprilthrough September 2009. For more information, visit www.fi.edu/exhibits/traveling/galileo.
Baci for your Sweetheart
For Valentine’s Day, Italians love to give Baci, bitesized,chocolate covered hazelnut kisses wrapped insmall love messages written in different languages.The legend behind the creation of these small confectionsis an interesting one. Baci was introduced on Valentine’s Day in 1922 by Perugina, a chocolate company based in Perugia, Italy. The chocolate candies were created by Luisa Spagnoli, the wife of one of thePerugina’s founders. In order to communicate with herlover, Giovanni Buitoni, the son of one of her husband’spartners, Luisa would write small love notes and wrapthem around the chocolates. She would then send thechocolates to Buitoni to inspect,and, more importantly,to read her secret message.After her death, Buitoni incorporatedLuisa’s clever ideainto the making of the candies.Although their creation remainsjust a legend, Baci havebecome a tradition with Italians as they celebrate Valentine’sDay. Baci are now popular everywhere and availablein department stores across the United States.
Prison for Valentine’s Dinner?!? Do you dream of taking your sweetheart out to dinnerat one of the most difficult places to snag a reservationin Italy? Fortezza Medicea, a 500-year old fortress locatedin Volterra, outside of Pisa, may be the place foryou. Only after submitting to a full background check,receiving a security clearance from Italy’s Departmentof Justice, frisking and the removal of your cell phones,can you enjoy dinner at the Fortezza. It is not only oneof Italy’s popular venues to dine, but also a maximumsecurity prison.The staff at the Fortezza Medicea is composed ofconvicted inmates. Serenaded by Bruno, the pianist
serving a life sentence for murder, diners enjoy a vegetarian menu and wine served by the sommelier Santolo,who is serving 24 years for murder.Although the meal is served on paper plates with plasticutensils and the dining hall is patrolled by armedprison warders, Fortezza Medicea has become so popular that there is a two-month wait for a reservation.Because of its success, Italy’s prison department isthinking of trying to open restaurants in other prisons.Fortezza Medicea is located on Via del Castello. Tomake a reservation, call 011-39/058-886-099 or visit www.volterratur.it.
Italian American Museum Opens in the Heart of Little Italy The Italian American Museum, located in the heart of New York’s “Little Italy,” has changed locations to 155 Mulberry Street at the corner of Grand. The museum purchased three buildings, including “Banca Stabile.” Established in 1885 by Francesco Rosario Stabile and preserved by the Stabile family, the historic bank now servesas the cornerstone for the museum. Museum hours are Tuesday through Sunday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Fridaysuntil 8 p.m. and by appointment. Admission is free. Please visit http://www.italianamericanmuseum.org/.
Italian Welfare League Seeks Help During its 88-year history, the Italian Welfare League has gone from helping Italian immigrants on the NewYork piers find jobs and housing to its present missionof helping children of Italian American descent who areill or suffering from emotional trauma. The league isseeking additional names of Italian American youngsterswho are in need of
assistance for its “I NostriBambini” program.Since the program’s inception in 2002, “I NostriBambini” has raised and distributed $200,000 tomorethan 100 children and awarded grants to organizationsthat provide services to children in need. This programshowcases the group’s commitment to children. Its first project distributed clothes to infants who made the
In Profile: Emily Mahony Emily Mahony began her career as a school teacher and today is the Vice President of Development at MarymountUniversity Why did you enter the fundraisNIAF spotlights one of ing field? I left teaching and a friend its council members who asked me to come work for her is also an active participant in the Foundation’s fundraising firm. Women’s Forum in the How did you advance in your career? Working hard.I kept getting D.C. metroarea. Profile: Emily Mahony hired away for a higher salary and
journeyfrom Italy to America in the 1920s.Please send recommendations of children across theUnited States who could be included in the “I NostriBambini” program to The Italian Welfare League, 8 East 69th Street, New York, NY 10021 or call 212-8618480.Visit www.italianwelfareleague.org.
title.What are some of the biggest obstacles you have faced at your job? Being a woman. Men deal differentlywith women. Who/what are the greatest influences in your life? My husband, Terry Mahony. How has your Italian heritage influenced you? In every way. The way I raised my children, the way I cook, the way I keep house, my work ethic (which is why I have succeeded), my sense of humor, my choice of friends and my family traditions. What advice would you give to
young people today? Never give up your job. Chances are relatively early in life you will have to support yourself or rely on a job to expand your life. Do you have a motto to live by? Work hard. Be self-reliant. Un giorno senza vino e come giorno senza sole (A day without wine is a day without sun).
(News Monthly Coordinator Natasha Borato) (Director of Communications Elissa Ruffino) (Contributing Writers Francesca Miele) Editor Monica Soladay Please send your group or city’s news of Italian-American exhibits, cultural events, scholarships and special events to Elissa Ruffino at the above address or e-mail email@example.com. Events/programs noted are not necessarily endorsed or sponsored by NIAF.
10 AMICI / Spring 2009
“Travel Tips” from
By John Conenna
JOHN CONENNA VENUS TRAVEL
very cold winter has hit it the Midwest and the east coast, January, with its major snowfalls and records breaking cold have put all of us at wits end. As I drove to work one cold January morning with snow and ice hitting my car, I said “ I should be somewhere in Mexico. My choice would be the Riviera Maya in Cancun Mexico. This is definitely the spot after this winter. A value in itself with its tropical beaches, warm weather and great nightlife makes this a great choice. All-inclusive is the theme of the Riviera Maya. There are over 25 beautiful plush hotels that are right on the beach, and plenty of restaurants and nightlife to fill your appetite. The Riviera Maya is a romantic setting for two, or a family vacation with those loved ones. The weather from February to late august is a guarantee of warm tropical days and endless summer nights. The atmosphere is very relaxing especially after that cold winter blue. When speaking of an all inclusive in the Riviera Maya. All your meals drinks, motorized water sports, transfers gratuities and taxes are all included. Cost may vary from hotel to hotel, and again when choosing the ho-
tel that fits your pocket book that’s where the professional travel agent comes into play. A one week package, in the Riviera Maya, may range any where from $1,300.00 to $1,900.00 per person this also includes the airfare to this destination. My choice of chain hotels vary! However I do recommend a few of the RIU chains they have a lot to offer. The DREAMS PUERTO AVENTURAS is als very stunning. Or if you would like to take it to the next level with that special loved one the SECRETS CAPRI HOTEL is second to none, and an unforgetable choice. So as I am writing the snow is falling. And i am sure you are either stopped in traffic or shoveling that walkway to your home. So don’t delay, email or fax, your travel professional travel agent, to book this warm treasure which is the Riviera Maya. JOHN CONENNA IS THE PRESIDENT OF VENUS TRAVEL INC
FROM THE BRONX TO CHICAGO The Sensational Must See
CHAZZ PALMINTERI’S BROADWAY HIT “A Bronx Tale” Comes to the Windy City LIMITED ENGAGEMENT THE 22, 2009 MARCH 10AT thru
FOR THE PERFOrming arts, oriental theatre The New York Times called A BRONX TALE“a rejuvenating act of faith in the powers of acting and storytelling.” In A BRONX TALE, Palminteri brings 18 characters to vivid life, depicting a rough childhood on Bronx streets Populated by a cast of friends and enemies.
Tickets range in price from $18 to $80 and will go on-sale to the public at a later date to be announced. Groups of 20 or more can make reservations now, by calling (312) 977-1710 24 West Randolph Street Chicago, IL 60601 www.theatreinchicago.com Spring 09 / AMICI 11
By Joe Cosentino
on’t tell Louis Lombardi somebody can’t write, direct, produce or act in their own movie. He did. In fact, he did it all in the 2008 release “Doughboys”.
“Jimmy (Gandolfini) was a true gentleman,” recalls Lombardi. “I’ve known Vincent Pastore for 30 years. Vinnie was a great inspiration for ‘Doughboys’”.
“You never quit in anything you do, said Lombardi. “Nothing comes easy or quickly. I tell everybody, you never quit. Once you quit, you close the door on opportunities.”
“Doughboys” was Lombardi’s first independent film (DVD 2008). The film was shot on location at Conti’s Bakery in his hometown, the Bronx, in New York. The film follows the life of two brothers who inherit the family business started by their father (played in flashbacks by Vincent Pastore). Lou (played by Lombardi) has a gambling problem and is in debt to a mobster. This jeopardizes the business. However, the two brothers face the adversity and overcome the threat together.
Lombardi, 41, began transcribing his thoughts when he was 12 years old. Following late nights hanging out with friends in the neighborhood, he would come home late and write stories. Those writings are now incorporated into the films he’s making today. He did not do well in school, but Lombardi knew what he wanted to do with his life. He got involved in the film program at New York University by auditioning for acting roles. When Lombardi was hired to act, he would watch the process and learn about filmmaking. He continued to act in NYU films and learn more and more about films. The effort paid off. Lombardi has created an extensive resume that includes more than 48 appearances in films and television. He is best known for his role in the hit television series “24” as the computer analyst, Edgar Stiles. The popular role ended when his character was killed in a nerve-gas attack. He was part of another popular series, HBO’s The Sopranos. Lombardi played a federal agent, but took away fond memories and friendships from that show.
“When I made ‘Doughboys’, I wanted to recreate the movies from the 1950s,” said Lombardi. “Those films were edgy, but there was no cursing, nudity, or violence. I’m most proud to be an Italian American, but there’s always been a dark cloud over Italian Americans being gangsters. “‘Doughboys’ is about family.” Lombardi noted the movies beginning in the 1960s like the Peter Fonda/Dennis Hopper film “Easy Rider” broke new ground portraying the anti-hero with drug use and nudity. The 70s and 80s allowed even more grit culminating with the “Godfather” and “Taxi Driver”. “I didn’t want to have one curse word like the ‘Sopranos’” said Lombardi. “I wanted it to be about family. I set out to make something different in the style of the 50s when you could take your family or anyone to see the movie.
THE SPIRIT movie. Photos (c) Lionsgate2
THE SPIRIT movie. Photos (c) Lionsgate2
Louis Lombardi as Edgar Stiles on FOX, s (24)
Pastore with young Lou and Frank “Doughboys”
“The film relates to the family. Wherever I have been, the audiences have the same reaction. I was very proud of that as a filmmaker. From city to city, the public had the say thing to say about it. It’s not an Italian American film but a movie about family. This film is like my little kid. I love that movie.” It took 12 years of writing and work to get “Doughboys” on the screen. That is testimony to his “never quit” approach to his life and work. Lombardi and his on-screen brother, Frank, played by Gaetano Iacono, prepared for the role working in the bakery for two weeks to learn how to use the equipment and roll the dough. A handwritten copy of the recipe for the Boston cream pie is shown on the movie’s promotional poster. “I wanted it to look like Willie Wonka (and the Chocolate Factory),” said Lombardi. “I wanted the movie to be visually full.”
keep the scene the same,” said Lombardi. “I wanted to keep the same feel of 50 years ago to today. Dates change but life doesn’t.”
In addition, to casting many of his friends and neighborhood people to be part of “Doughboys”, Lombardi asked old friend actor/songwriter Louis Vanaria if he had any songs that could be used for the film. Vanaria is best known as Crazy Mario from “The Bronx Tale”.
The movie works perfectly. Everything fell into place during the summer of 2006 filming on location in the Bronx. Lombardi originally wrote the script for a pizza restaurant. While traveling to do an interview for “The Tony Danza Show”, he spotted Conti’s Bakery. The bakery had been part of the community for generations.
“Victor Bruno was doing the music for the movie,” said Vanaria. “He’s a good friend of mine, so he called and we talked about doing original music for the film. I said, ‘give me a week.’ So I watched the rough cut of the film and loved it.” Vanaria, who plays piano, wrote a ballad, “I Wouldn’t Change a Thing”. It’s played over the closing credits. The opens with Vanaria covering Frank Sinatra’s hit “This Town” (written by Lee Hazelwood). “The soundtrack is mine throughout the film,” said Vanaria, who is from Lombardi’s neighborhood. “I got involved big-time.” Vanaria recalls arriving late to the premier of “Doughboys” and finding the theater jammed pack with people. He had to watch the film standing in back of the theater. “The movie moved so well, it felt like a half-hour,” said Vanaria. “Doughboys” is a touching film. Lombardi has written a heartwarming story that truly captures life in his Bronx neighborhood. His portrayal of Lou, the brother with the hard-luck, is understated yet he maintains an engaging presence on the screen reminiscent of the Jackie Gleason famous “Poor Soul” character. Even when he isn’t speaking his facial expressions speak volumes. One of the more captivating aspects of the film is the flashback segments that show how the relationship develops between the brothers and their late father. The relationship between the father and his sons is the very foundation for the film’s story line. The flashbacks are clearly defined. They segue (make a transition) from the color of pastry shop into sepia, (photograph or film in brown tint). In one telling flashback, the father tells the boys every time the church bells ring, “it means the Big Guy is watching.” Interestingly, the church bells ring whenever Lou is in dire straits. “I tried to change the feel of the moment in the flashbacks, but
It looked like a perfect setting, so Lombardi changed the script’s setting. He worked a deal to use the bakery for the location. The family that owned the bakery had already planned to take a vacation for the summer so Lombardi use of the fully equipped bakery for the filming. Additionally, the bakery was scheduled for renovation upon the family’s return from vacation, thus allowing Lombardi to destroy the inside for the dramatic ending to the movie. “Everything fell into place,” said Lombardi. Lombardi and his wife, Mandy have one child, Ava. Mandy was a co-producer of “Doughboys”. He just finished a new script titled, “Patty Mac” and currently has a featured role in “The Spirit” written and directed by Frank Miller, and starring Gabriel Macht, Eva Mendes, Scarlett Johansson, and Samuel L. Jackson. “The Spirit” tells the story of a murdered cop who is reborn as masked crime fighter called the Spirit. Lombardi plays multiple roles as the villainous Octopus’ (Jackson) henchmen. Lombardi says “I just can’t take quitters,” he affirms. “You just can’t quit.”
Dr. Isadore Rosenfeld Melanoma and its Developing Research Dr. Isadore Rosenfeld has had a long lasting relationship in the Italian American community. He was honored by the Foreign Minister of Italy, who conferred these honors to the Doctor as“Commendatore and Grand Uficiale della Republica Italian”
All books available at Amazon.com
We hear so much about cancer these days. It seems that almost everyone we know has some form or other and there is a general impression that the cancer “situation” is worsening. The incidence of this disease is increasing because it is being diagnosed more often and earlier due to new technology and also because people are living longer. As we age, we become more vulnerable cancer due to an impaired immune system. But although the incidence of cancer is increasing, the outlook for someone who develops it is much better than ever. Currently, more than 50% of men and women with cancer are now either cured or live for at least five years after the diagnosis has been made. Thanks to newer medications and surgical and radiological procedures, those numbers are constantly improving. We used to believe that anything you enjoy eating or drinking can’t be good for you. That’s usually true for junk food, but there are many foods and beverages that are healthy – starting with moderate amounts of red wine or grape juice, green tea and the polyunsaturated fats in fish. But you can now add two more items to the list. Researchers believe that drinking chamomile tea may help prevent complications of type 2 diabetes (loss of vision, kidney and nerve damage) and lower blood sugar levels. This is suggested on the basis of how diabetic rats responded to an extract of chamomile tea. Although no studies of yet have been done in humans, it seems like a good idea for diabetics to have a couple of glasses chamomile today. Harm it can’t do you. For something more solid than tea, it’s a good idea to eat pistachio nuts whenever you get a chance. The Unsaturated fatty acids they contain as well as their phytosterols and fiber can significantly reduce the (bad) LDL cholesterol levels in the blood and improve heart health. Putting a fan in your baby’s room may help prevent sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) this is according to a new study. This is especially true when the baby is sleeping in a warm room with a temperature above 69 degrees. It may be fans are protective because by improving air circulation, the infants do not rebreathe their exhaled carbon dioxide, which can accumulate in the space between the baby’s face and the mattress. Also remember something that’s been well known for a long time. Your baby should sleep on his or her back. The number of sudden infant deaths has dropped by half since parents have been following this advice. Unfortunately more than 25% of mothers of threemonth-olds don’t do so at sharing a bed with your infant may also increase the risk. Isadore Rosenfeld. M.D.C.M. F.A.C.P. Rossi Distinguished Professor of Clinical Medicine, Weill Cornell Medical College
A mici d’ italia italian american association The purpose and eligibility of
Amici d’ Italia (Friends of Italy) is dedicated
to the promotion of the Italian American heritage.
CALL FOR DETAILS JOIN US! So together we can make a difference WE CAN ALL GIVE TOGETHER TO OUR ITALIAN COMMUNITY, AND PUT OUR IDEAS TO WORK!
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Parents are often faced with the quandary of how to deal with elevated cholesterol in their child. Plaques that narrow the arteries and block flow to the heart form early in life, and are more likely to do so when certain risk factors such as high blood pressure, overweight, diabetes, and high cholesterol are present. Given the effectiveness, popularity and relative safety of the statin drugs one is tempted to use these medications children. Although the FDA has approved their use as early as age 8, most doctors, including me, believe that they should be given only as a last resort. There are many reasons for this caution. Most important an appropriate low fat diet, especially one low in saturated fat, combined with weight loss and exercise are usually lower cholesterol levels significantly. Also to be considered is the fact that we do not have very long-term follow-up on the use of these statins for the 40 or 50 years that these children would be taking them. Although high cholesterol is dangerous, cholesterol itself is an important constituent of the blood. It is important in hormone formation and in brain development in kids. It should not be tampered with a young age except under very special circumstances such as strong family history of coronary disease, among others. So by all means monitor your child’s cholesterol level and do all you can to normalize it accused the cholesterol-lowering
drugs only as a last resort.
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alignant melanoma is a lifethreatening form of skin cancer. However, when detected early enough, it can often be cured. There are two other very common forms of skin cancer; squamous cell carcinoma and basal cell carcinoma, which are easily removed and do not normally, pose a threat to the patient. However, up researchers have reported in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute that a history of these nonmelanoma skin cancers not only increases the risk of developing a malignant melanoma, but also double the chances of someone developing other cancers, especially of the lung, colon, and breast. The reason for this vulnerability is not clear what the researchers speculate that it may be due to a weakened ability, due to sun exposure, to repair DNA damage to cells. What ever the mechanism involved, the American Cancer Society recommends that people who have had skin cancers should “make sure they are up to date on all their screening tests – colonoscopies, examination stool for blood, mammograms and Pap smears. In a related study, published in the same issue of this journal, researchers report that anyone who uses blood pressure lowering drugs called angiotensin – converting enzymes (ACE)) inhibitors (lisinopril is the prototype), or angiotensin receptor blockers ARB (valsartan) have a lower risk of developing basal or squamous cell skin cancers. Fortunately, these the drugs happen to be effective and well tolerated.
“A Country is not a mere territory; the particular territory is only its foundation. The Country is the idea which rises upon that foundation; it is the sentiment of love, the sense of fellowship which binds together all the sons of that territory.” Quote: Giuseppe Mazzini 14 AMICI / Spring 09
GREEN TEA TEA Green Tea Increase Metabolism Aid In Weight Loss
By Andrew Guzaldo reen tea extract has been the focus of several weight loss studies recently. In addition to its healthful benefit of strong antioxidant activity and its Leptin is a protein produced by fats that appear to play an important role in how the body manages fat storage through brain signals. Years ago it was thought by scientists that lower leptin levels would increase appetite. Current research has now found that it does just the opposite and decreases appetite. There is clear evidence that green tea's polyphenols (EGCG) are a factor in depressing leptin as well as affecting other hormone levels important in regulating appetite. Green tea is now holding promise in many areas of weight loss. Besides affecting leptin levels, green tea also increases noradrenaline levels. Noradrenaline is a chemical neurotransmitter in the nervous system that plays a major role in activation of brown fat tissue (BAT), which is the only metabolically active fat in the human body. Activation of brown fat by increased noradrenaline levels is significant because it burns calories from the white fat located around our waistline, hips and thighs. In a study reported on in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, it was found that green tea extract resulted in a significant increase in energy expenditure (a measure of metabolism), plus also had a significant effect on fat oxidation. While some of the effects were originally theorized to be due to the caffeine content of green tea, the researchers discovered that the tea actually has properties that go beyond those that would be explained by the caffeine. Green tea appears to speed up calorie burning, including fat calorie burning. The green tea extract may play a role in the control of body composition. Researchers studied the effects of green tea on 10 healthy young men, average age 25, who ranged from lean to mildly overweight. For 6 weeks, the men took two capsules at each meal: green tea extract plus 50 milligrams of caffeine; 50 milligrams of caffeine; or a placebo (inactive capsule). The study participants were on a weight maintenance diet of about 13% protein, 40% fat, and 47% carbohydrates, a "typical Western diet." Three times during the study, the men spent 24 hours in a special room where the investigators measured their respiration and energy expenditure. Energy expenditure, the number of calories used during a 24-hour period, was higher for men taking green tea extract than for those taking caffeine or placebo. They also found evidence that men taking the green tea extract used more fat calories than those taking the placebo. There was no difference between the caffeine users and the placebo users in terms of either overall calorie burning or fat calorie burning. The researchers therefore conclude that the increased calorie burning in
the green tea group cannot be explained by caffeine intake alone. The investigators suggest that the caffeine interacted with natural substances in green tea called flavonoids to alter the body's use of norepinephrine, a chemical transmitter in the nervous system, and increase the rate of calorie burning. The researchers point out that, unlike some diet products, green tea does not contain high doses of caffeine, and it did not affect the heart rate in the study participants. The researchers indicated that their findings have substantial implications for weight control. A 4% overall increase in 24-hour energy expenditure was attributed to the green tea extract, however, the research found that the extra expenditure took place during the daytime. This led them to conclude that, since thermogenesis (the body's own rate of burning calories) contributes 8-10% of daily energy expenditure in a typical subject, that this 4% overall increase in energy expenditure due to the green tea actually translated to a 35-43% increase in daytime thermogenesis. Of critical importance to thyroid patients is the fact that none of the research subjects reported any side effects, and no significant differences in heart rates were noticed. In this respect, green tea extract is different from some of the prescription drugs for obesity, and herbal products like ephedra, which can raise heart rates and blood pressure, and are not recommended for many individuals, in particular, those with thyroid disease who may be particularly sensitive to stimulants.
Reference American Journal of Clinical Nutrition November 1999;70:1040_1045. Efficacy of a green tea extract rich in catechin polyphenols and caffeine in increasing 24-h energy expenditure and fat oxidation in humans1,2,3 Abdul G Dulloo, Claudette Duret, DorothĂŠe Rohrer, Lucien Girardier, Nouri Mensi, Marc Fathi, Philippe Chantre and Jacques Vandermander. Spring 09 / AMICI 15
By John Rizzo Cavalleria rusticana and Pagliacci are often paired together in one evening of opera, and what an evening it makes! Besides the audience’s sheer enjoyment of experiencing two masterpieces for the price of one, there are other good reasons to stage these operas together. First of all, both are essentially one-act operas which, when separated by an intermission of reasonable length, take no more time than a single opera of normal duration, just about three hours. A more important consideration, however, is the direct historical and aesthetic link between the two operas, in that Cavalleria and Pagliacci are the only two operas of the so-called verismo school that continue to maintain an unassailable position in the standard repertoire. Indeed, these two operas are the defining examples, the alpha and the omega, of verismo. Does an opera of the verismo (a term derived from the Latin root meaning “truth”) depict, as Tonio says, “un squarcio di vita” (a slice of life)? Perhaps. But not any ordinary kind of life with which most of us are acquainted. Both operas are first and foremost tragedies, in that the heroes of each accept their respective fates and are destroyed because of that acceptance. These verismo tragedies, however, differ from standard tragic operas in a couple of ways. Most importantly, unlike the more orthodox treatments of the tragic form, the characters in both works are commoners, not nobles. In this regard, Bizet’s Carmen is the direct ancestor of the verismo. We can go back to Day One of opera and we will not find a single important serious work wherein the characters are not of the nobility until we get to Carmen. Neither are any typical tragic operas other than Carmen and the verismo set in contemporary times. This too reflects an ancient rule of tragedy that goes back to the Greeks. (We recall Verdi’s frustration with all opera companies that produced La traviata in their insistence in staging the work in 17th century trappings, according to this time-honored tradition.) Another novelty of verismo opera was the radical overhaul of the language. For centuries, libretti were constructed with verses of various metric schemes – recurring lines of five, six, seven, eight, nine, ten and eleven syllables. These lines also had to rhyme in one pattern or another, and the prose was extremely elevated. In the verismo of Cavalleria and Pagliacci the characters spoke ordinary common, or idiomatic, language with no regard to metric regularity. This liberation of speech from the confining limitations of rigid prosody is something else that Verdi sought vainly to achieve for many years, even with Boito. Along with the dialogue, the melody was now free to float to where it could have the greatest dramatic impact. If a single word were sought to describe the drama of Cavalleria rusticana, an apt choice would be “primitive”. In recounting the story of this
CAVALLERIA c. Feliz Sanchez opera, there is not much more one can add to this synopsis: “In a tiny Sicilian village, a man who has an affair with a married woman is betrayed to the woman’s husband by his former and impregnated girlfriend, and is consequently killed by the husband.” Now how basic can you get? Yet, that this simple scenario could be set to music so effectively is not only a testimony to the genius of the composer, but is also a remarkable demonstration of how the medium of opera can transform and elevate even the most basic theme to a work of artistic grandeur. In creating his single masterpiece Pietro Mascagni was not exactly treading on new dramatic ground, as far as plot is concerned. Sex, especially the kind of illicit sex that inevitably leads to violence and death, is a common element in the plots of almost all operas from Mozart through Puccini. Indeed, it is difficult to name an opera in which illicit sex or at least the desire for it does not drive the action to its climax. Characters like Almaviva or Don Giovanni or the Duke of Mantua, are driven solely by the singleminded motivation of sexual conquest. More typical of Turiddu’s predecessors are Pollione, Romeo, Don Pasquale, Di Luna, Alfredo, Des Grieux, Faust, Don Carlo, Don Jose and Radames, just to name a few. But in the operas populated by these characters, more complex activity usually occurs. In Cavalleria, unlike any earlier opera, our attention is exclusively drawn to two of the most primal forces of our species, lust and violence, without any regard for social trappings or historical background or any subplot that diffuses the dramatic interest. Cavalleria is also, as much as any opera, truly a “mood” piece, in which the atmosphere of the setting is as important as the action. Consider this one example: when Turiddu is killed at the end, everyone knows it was Alfio who killed him. But in a quaint expression of Sicilian omerta it is reported: “Hanno ammazzato...” (They killed him).
* * * *
PAGLIACCI c. Javier Del Real, Teatro Real
Pagliacci has much in common with Cavalleria rusticana, most noticeably its language, its brevity and its verismo trappings of plot simplicity, common folk characters and its dramatic preoccupation with adultery and revenge. Leoncavallo’s Pagliacci was also influenced by a true-life experience of its composer. The son of a rural magistrate, Leoncavallo witnessed as a child the trial of an itinerant actor who killed his adulterous wife. And like Mascagni, Leoncavallo never again wrote another decent opera. But both musically and dramatically, the signature works of these two composers are quite different. If the term “primitive” describes Cavalleria, the word for Pagliacci is “classical.” All classic tragedies are “character” dramas. For tragedy to occur, the audience needs to feel for the predicaments of the characters. The only way this can happen is if the characters are fleshed out so vividly that we can relate to their suffering -- the depiction of bad things happening to a relatively unknown character is not enough to elevate simple misery to a tragic level. Nor will this produce much audience sympathy, let alone evoke a catharsis (the prime reason for tragedy, according to Aristotle). For example, when Turiddu dies in Cavalleria, how many people in the audience are moved to tears? All we really know about him is that he is in love with another man’s wife, who is no great prize herself, and that he has coldly spurned the future mother of his child. But the dramatic and musical characterization in Pagliacci is far more sophisticated and gripping, and, with its remarkable play-within-a-play, perhaps more operatic. Canio is one of the most memorable and tragic figures in all of opera. This is not because he is a particularly virtuous character, but because Leoncavallo has so masterfully opened up his soul through word and song. This is accomplished by brutal irony, of a magnitude comparable to Sophocles’ Oedipus. In the opening scene Canio unknowingly anticipates what is to follow with lines like these: “You’ll see the ravings of the crafty clown, you’ll see him avenge” and “The theater and life are not the same! If up there the clown surprises his wife with a suitor in his room, he gives a funny speech...But if Nedda should take me unaware the story would end differently... If that’s a joke, believe me, it’s better not to joke!” And then comes his signature aria, an aria that exemplifies tragic opera --unforgettable in its melody and sublime in its pathos: “Perform! While seized with delirium…But then you must force yourself!…You’re a clown! Put on the costume and whiten your face…Transform to jest your agony and tears, your sob and grief to a funny face! Ah! Laugh clown, over your shattered love. Laugh at the pain poisoning your heart.” Thus Canio, already ripped by the realization of his wife’s infidelity, accepts a fate that demands that he must suffer the scornful laughs of the crowd as he portrays a hapless cuckold and, in so doing, enters the realm of high tragedy. Following tradition, Lyric Opera presents both one-act operas in a single show. Feb: 14, 18, 22, 25; Mar: 4, 9, 14, 17, 20, 23, 27. For reservations, call 312-332-2244 or visit www.lyricopera.org
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Florence marvelous regions OF italy
Culture, of exception artistic legacy of Florence is known for its artistical history in the forms of its paintings and sculptures. It is the hometown of many great painters and sculptors. Leonardo da Vinci , famous for his Mona Lisa painting, inventions and other scientific research. Guccio Gucci, creator of the Gucci fashion line. Michelangelo Buonarroti another renowned sculptor famed for the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel. Amerigo Vespucci, the explorer well-known for naming the “America” and many more creators tooFlorentine is the language spoken by the populace of Florence Florence houses the famous The Bargello Palace which was a former garrison and prison, now an art museum. In the museum dwells the magnum opus of Michelangelo, such as his Madonna and Child, David-Apollo. Donatello’s David, one of the most legendary effigies in housed at the Bargello. Some of the other museums at Florence are the THE ‘UFFIZI GALLERY’ one of the supreme museums in Italy and the world, THE NATIONAL MUSEUM ‘IL BARGELLO’ one of the oldest buildings in Florence and many more. Some of the noteworthy Historical monuments at Florence are ‘Palazzo Vecchio”,”The Cathedral “The Basilica of San Lorenzo’ and many more.
Those of us fortunate enough to visit Italy are deeply impressed by the medieval churches that seem to anchor virtually every single city and town we encounter. Today these Romanesque and Gothic structures are primarily appreciated for their hauntingly beautiful architecture and the priceless artistic treasures they contain. But in the late Middle Ages, they were more than superbly designed and uncannily engineered edifices of brick and mortar. A church of this time represented the spiritual heart of its community and the center of intellect and art - and often a bastion for protection from barbarians. If a community were lucky enough, its church would be presided over by a priest who would zealously tend his flock like any good shepherd, when necessary keeping the wolves at bay. So it is in our own time. There is no question that the right shepherds at the right time were heading St. Ambrose church, the spiritual heart of the Italian American community of St. Louis known as The Hill.
forces arrayed against The Hill, Father Sal organized countless meetings in St. Ambrose and mobilized a level of support that most real community organizers could only dream of. From the pulpit of St. Ambrose, to the hearing rooms of Jefferson City to the Capitol in Washington D.C., Polizzi raised such Saint Ambrose a hue and cry that Italian Americans from all over the country took an interest in the issue. This included then U.S. Secretary of Transportation John Volpe, who personally surveyed the situation when in St. Louis. The battle over this issue was long and drawn out, and was very hard fought. On more than one occasion Msgr. Polizzi recalled that participants in meetings in St. Ambrose had to “pledge on the Bible” that they would not reveal planned actions. “Old ladies were ready to march with their rosaries,” he claimed. But that drastic step proved unnecessary. When residents of The Hill expressed their desire for an overpass by raising their own money to help pay for it, the powers that be relented. Polizzi had prevailed. More importantly, through this battle, and others, like preventing a sleazy drivein to be built, and stopping a lead company from pumping its waste into abandoned clay mines under the neighborhood, Father Sal had inspired the residents of The Hill to reacquire their dormant sense of spirit and pride.
Perhaps best known for producing two remarkable Major League baseball players, Joe Garagiola In 1981, Polizzi was reassigned to minister to and Yogi Berra, the flock of St. Roch, where he still is a beacon The Hill of St. of spirituality. “Any priest worth his salt gets Louis has been involved with all his parishioners,” he maintains. a community of Because of this attitude, and all that he has accitizens of mainly complished over the years, Msgr. Polizzi has been Italian descent recognized numerous times by many organizasince the early tions. Perhaps the greatest honor bestowed on 20th century. Originally settled by immigrants from him was when he was chosen to personally drive Liguria and Lombardy, the population of The Hill was Mother Teresa around St. Louis on her visit there augmented by people from Sicily and southern Italy in several years back. Although his first responthe 1920s. As the century progressed, the community sibility is to the Parish of St. Roch, he cannot Monsignor Salvatore Polizzi prospered, enjoying considerable political clout wieldseparate himself ed by powerful forces in city government sympathetic to the denizens of The completely from his former parish. “My Hill. But as in the case of most American cities, demographics changed in the secretary, my bookkeeper and the principal ‘60s, and a new power structure spelled trouble for the once favored Hill. For- of the school are all from The Hill.” tunately for the community, the priest of St. Ambrose then was Father (now Monsignor) Salvatore Polizzi, who stalwartly believed in the future of his parIn a way, Polizzi is still very much conish, and fiercely defended the well-being of his flock. For example, consider nected to The Hill. That’s because his couswhat happened when Interstate 44 was planned to run right through The Hill. in, Father Vincent Bommarito, has been the parish priest at St. Ambrose since 1999. Blessed by the Federal government and the Missouri Department of High- What makes the connection even stronways, the projected path of I44 would have cut off an entire section of the ger is that both their families hail from the Hill. What’s worse, the citizens of the severed section would have been at same small village near Palermo. Actually, risk of losing both their property and their lives because it was possible for Father Vincent has been involved with the the local fire department to be blocked by trains or traffic under the proposed St. Ambrose parish since he was a semihighway path. Initially ignoring the outcry of Hill residents, the project went narian in the early 70s, when he handled forward as planned. Now Father Sal, besides being the parish priest, was also all kinds of supportive chores, like runthe chairman of The Hill 2000, a grassroots organization founded in 1964, ning the youth groups and driving the seso named to signal a dedication to preserve the uniqueness of the commu- niors from place to place. After he was nity into the next century. Undaunted by the powerful economic and political ordained, Father Vincent served as assis- Father Vincent Bommarito 22 AMICI / Spring 09
seniors from place to place after his first couple of assignments as a full-fledged priest, Bommarito returned to assume the spiritual leadership of The Hill in 1999. Since then he has overseen the extensive, and very tasteful rehabbing of the interior of St. Ambrose, whose exterior is a close replica of the venerable Sant’Ambrogio in Milan. Bommarito’s most important contribution to the community, however, results from the same fighting spirit shown by his older cousin. Human nature being what it is, after the tumultuous victories of the 70s, the feistiness and community spirit of The Hill’s citizenry began to wane, while complacency, apathy and even disunity brought the neighborhood once more to the time of trial. Shortly before Fr. Vincent returned to St. Ambrose parish two Italian Americans battled each other to become The Hill’s alderman. As a result – you guessed it! – the Italian American vote was split and an outsider won the election, so the majority of the area’s population really had no representation in government. This was potentially a real disaster because about eleven-and-ahalf acres of land just east of the church stood empty, a magnet for developers who could hardly wait to implant the kinds of businesses that might make some money,
but would surely ruin the character of the community. When Father Vincent took the reins at St. Ambrose, the church once again became the spark and focal point for community solidarity. After a series of closed meetings at the church, a single candidate for alderman received the full support of the community, and this man prevailed in the next election. The money hungry developers could not go forward with their projects because the zoning ordinances favored by the community would not allow it. According to Bommarito the architect’s plan approved by the community “accommodates the proper usage of the land that will harmonize with The Hill’s special cultural fabric.” Instead of hotels and numerous franchise outfits the land will feature mostly residential units. Because of the church stepping up to the plate, the grassroots Hill 2000 organization has been rejuvenated and the government is once again working for the people it represents. As Father Vincent puts it, “the three legs of the community tripod – the church, the people and the government – are now solidly working together.”
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As debates rage nationally and locally over immigrant’s rights, we are well served to remember that – ultimately and with very few exceptions - all Americans are immigrants in one form or another. At the Statue of Liberty’s pedestal, the American ideal is reflected eloquently in a poem by Emma Lazarus that begins: “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free…” Ideology and dialogue alone, however, provide little visible relief to immigrants. Help often comes from individuals, and for many Italian immigrants in late 19th America, this support came from Saint Frances Xavier Cabrini. Widely recognized as the first American citizen canonized by the Roman Catholic Church, she is also acknowledged as the Patron Saint of immigrants. She gave hope to those desperately seeking help, offering assistance in both their material and spiritual needs.
Frances Xavier Cabrini:
America’s Patron Saint of Immigrants St. Frances Xavier Cabrini, commonly known as “Mother Cabrini”, was the first American citizen to be canonized a saint.
orn Maria Francesca Cabrini on July 15, 1850, she was the tenth child of Agostino Cabrini and Stella Oldini. Her difficult birth, premature by two months, affected her health throughout her life. Many of siblings, however, would not survive adolescence. Her father farmed as her mother tended to the children in Sant’Angelo Lodigiano, a small village sited on the plains of Lombardy south of Milan. Maria’s life found its direction early. Nightly, her father read to the family, often recounting stories of great Catholic missionaries. Especially appealing for Maria were the tales of Chinese missions, and she hoped to become a Franciscan missionary. At the age of 13, she enrolled as a boarding student in the Normal School located in the commune of Arluno. Graduating in 1868 and certified as a teacher, she remained in Arluno, living in the convent with the religious sisters who ran the school. In 1877, at the age of 27, she was able to take religious vows and became the Mother Superior of the House of Providence orphanage in another Lombardian commune, Codogno. In a tribute to the evangelizing Jesuit, Frances Xavier, Maria added Xavier to her name. Within three years, she helped establish a new order, the Missionary Sisters of the Sacred Heart. The order helped to create homes, a school and a nursery, and their good works became known to the
Bishop of Piacenza, Giovanni Scalabrini. By the late 19th century, thousands of Italians had arrived in the United States, with many making New York City their home. They suffered tremendous hardships in their new country. Viewed contemptuously by most Americans, Italians labored in the most menial of jobs. Even the Roman Catholic Church in America was unprepared for their arrival and initially treated the many devout Italians as outsiders. The prayers of the immigrants, however, were soon answered in the form of Mother Frances Xavier Cabrini. Urged by Bishop Scalabrini, and with the blessing and support of Pope Leo XIII, she and six of her Missionary Sisters landed in New York in early 1889. Unable to speak English and lacking a place to stay, she and her fellow Sisters endured many of the same problems suffered by immigrants. Obstacles, however, failed to diminish her spirit and within a short time she established an orphanage and school. Her primary donor was the wife of the director of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Countess Mary Cesnola. This was only the beginning, however, for during her lifetime Mother Cabrini founded sixty-seven institutions around the world including schools, orphanages, hospitals, and social service outreach programs. Eventually her work brought Mother Cabrini to Seattle, where in 1909 she
Mother Xavier Cabrini still represents a ray of hope for many, especially immigrants. She saw not what was, but what could be. Her inspiration and genuine love not only changed lives, but saved them, too. Her accomplishments will never fade nor be diminished with time. Mother Xavier Cabrini left us with a prayer, and it serves a reminder of who she was, and perhaps a guide for future generations:
We must pray without tiring, for the salvation of mankind does not depend on material success; nor on sciences that cloud the intellect. Neither does it depend on arms and human industries, but on Jesus alone. Holy Sepulchre Catholic Cemetery
24 AMICI / Spring 09
fulfilled a deeply held desire to become an American citizen. Her missionary work continued with zeal over the next few years as she traveled extensively reaching to help those with the greatest needs. A tale persists that in 1912, she and a companion had tickets for the Titanic. Circumstances – and perhaps divine intervention - prevented her from sailing on that ship’s final voyage. The last years of her life were spent in Chicago. Her health, always fragile, eventually failed as she contracted malaria. As she sat in her wicker chair at Columbus Hospital, the disease claimed her life as she prepared Christmas candy treats for the local immigrant children. Mother Frances Xavier Cabrini passed away on December 22, 1917, at the age of 67. Appropriately, she was interred at the Sacred Heart Orphanage in West Park, NY. In 1933, however, Mother Cabrini was exhumed and enshrined in the church’s altar at St. Frances Cabrini Shrine in Manhattan. Faithful pilgrims continue to visit this site by the thousands each year. Five years later, the Church beatified Mother Cabrini and Pope Pius XII subsequently canonized her on July 7, 1946. Attesting to her immense popularity, even in death, over 100,000 attended her canonization at Chicago’s Soldier Field. By 1950, Pope Pius XII also declared her the “Heavenly Patroness of all Emigrants.”
Are you interested in learning about your Italian Heritage? Here is a short story courtesy of My Italian Family about a very special person. We hope you will enjoy reading it. Saint Francis was born on September 26, 1181 in Assisi to Pietro di Bernardone dei Moriconi, a very wealthy cloth merchant, and his wife Giovanna also known as Pica Bourlemont, about whom little is known except she is said to have belonged to a noble family of Provence, France. He was one of seven children. Pietro was in France on business when Francis was born, and Pica had him baptized as Giovanni di Bernardone to honor San Giovanni Battista (Saint John the Baptist), in the hope he would grow to be a great religious leader. She even staged the birth of her son in a stable built for the occasion on the ground floor of their home to honor the birth of Jesus. Later the stable will be known as “stalletta” or “Chapel of baby Saint Francis” and it is located in the main square of Assisi. When Pietro returned to Assisi, he decided to add Francesco (Francis) to his son’s first name. This name was the medieval equivalent of francese, i.e.“French” and was chosen to honor France, his favored business destination and to honor the child’s maternal heritage. Pietro’s worldly success and the imperial privileges granted by the city governor Duke Corrado di Lützen had secured for the young Francis a care-free life of material comfort. He received his education at the catholic school of San Giorgio, spoke fluent Latin and Provençal and was considered by his father the natural heir of his family business. Francis was short and skinny, and had dark hair. He was a popular youth, often the center of attention that could be found engaged in sport, frequenting the piazze of the city and leisurely spending his father’s money. His nickname was “rex iuvenum” (king of banquets). After the death of the German Emperor Enrico IV (11651197) and the election of a new pope, Cardinal Lotario di Segni, later known as Innocenzo III (1198-1216), the political landscape changed and the pope took under his control additional territories which also included Spoleto and Assisi. The people of these towns revolted against the nobles who took refuge in the nearby town of Perugia. Francis who had
dreams of being a knight took part in this war and when the Assisians were defeated in Ponte San Giovanni, he became a prisoner of Perugia and spent one year in prison. His family was able to get him out after paying a substantial ransom but his health has already been compromised. This started a spiritual crisis where he abandoned his former life to embrace meditation, nursing lepers and begging for the poor. His father Pietro attempted to bring him to his senses, first with threats and then with corporal punishment. After a final interview in the presence of the bishop Guido II, Francis renounced his father and his wealth, laying aside even the garments he had received from him while the bishop covered him with his mantle. He lived as a beggar in the region of Assisi. Returning to the town, he restored several ruined churches, among them San Damiano, San Pietro alla Spira, and the Porziuncola in Santa Maria degli Angeli, just outside the town, which later became his favorite refuge. Founder of the Order of Friars Minor (lesser brothers) more commonly known as the Franciscans, he dedicated the rest of his life to help the poor and preach repentance. He died on the evening of 3 October 1226 singing Psalm 141 while lying on the bare ground. He was just 45 years old. His feast day is observed on October 4th. On 16 July 1228 he was pronounced a saint by the next pope Gregory IX, the former cardinal Ugolino di Conti, friend and protector of St. Francis. The next day, the pope laid the foundation stone for the Basilica of Saint Francis in Assisi. Learning about our origins can be an important legacy to our children, after all memories are not used to remember the lost time, but to start again, knowing that losing our roots inevitably leads to a loss in our identity as people who live, think and love. If you are interested in authorizing a research project in your Ancestral town, go to: http://www.myitalianfamily. com/research/home_research.htm or call us direct at 1-888-472-0171. If you are interested in traveling to your Ancestral town in Italy, go to: http://www.myitalianfamily.com/trips or call us direct at 1-888-472-0171.
THE UNSUNG HEROES Part 1
“316th TCG flying formation”
by Mike Ingrisano One of the heroes of the 316th Troop Carrier Group had to be Lt. John H. May of the 44th Squadron. But not in the way most would think of a WWII hero. He had a non-combat, desk job as Intelligence Officer, but using his gifts of observation and prose he left a treasure for future generations. In this issue, and next, will be much of his reporting on the preparations for and the return from “VARSITY,” a successful but costly paratrooper drop across the Rhine. As early as October 1944, the staff of the First Allied Airborne Army learned that General Omar Bradley wanted an airborne assault over the Rhine into Germany. But because of the resistance by the German Army during the wintry Battle of the Bulge, D-Day for VARSITY, as the operation was called, was delayed until 24 March 1945. It was the last combat mission to be flown by troop carrier units in the European theater. Eighty planes from my outfit, the 316th Troop Carrier Group, were assigned to drop the British 6th Airborne Division over the Rhine into Wesel, Germany. May’s reporting describes what life was like in the 44th Squadron as it prepared for VARSITY from a “sister” base in England. The account humanizes, almost on a minute-by-minute basis those few days in the lives of the men of the 44th who were involved in this last combat mission. The report begins three days before the drop, and includes the day of the mission itself. I was lucky to find May’s report in a record that was unclassified for me, only because it was on the same microfilm roll with my own 37th Squadron. Because of this shared experience, he also, in effect, speaks for and to all the men in all the squadrons. I have edited it to fit this space and eliminate some of the mission-specific data, for this truly could represent what the men experienced for most any Troop Carrier combat mission. Aside from the official records he penned, little is known of Lt. May. He came to the Group and Squadron late in the war. To my knowledge he has not connected with any of our afterwar Reunions, and the “pictures” in his prose will have to substitute for a real photograph of himself. And likewise, the photo record available to me is sparse for VARSITY-specific images. Some of the images with this article show scenes similar to those described by May. Account by Lt. John May, 44th Squadron, 316th Troop Carrier Group: [Wednesday] March 21, 1945 Group Formation early this morning looked pretty good. Parapacks (British) are being installed on all planes. Planes were scheduled to depart 22 March to Wethersfield on detached service but departure has been ad26 AMICI / Spring 09
vanced 24 hours. Planes are to depart late this afternoon. All administrative work is to be done back here at Cottesmore, our home base. Combat crew list drawn up. The only old men [of the 44th Squadron] flying this mission are the Flight Leaders. Lt. Col. [Benjamin F.] Kendig will not fly on D-Day. Maj. [William S.] Keiser, Operations Officer, will lead the Squadron on that day. Col. Kendig will fly on D-day plus. Only C.O. and crew members originally flown down at Wethersfield have been briefed. Rear echelon will have only Liberty Run passes. There is no mad rush about this time, for everything is going along on a ‘business as usual’ basis. Rumors have at last stopped—men feel this is R-day [reality], and our part in it just had to be. Group issued some escape purses and kits, and also some large-scale maps. Men are packing bedrolls, underwear, and socks, which are to be loaded on the planes at 1445 hours. Take off is 1600 hours. One plane departed well in advance of the formation with cooks, K.P.s, and general duty men. Sure hate to leave Cottesmore now—Spring seems to have hit the field. We departed Cottesmore at 1600 hours, 20 planes and one spare loaded with essential personnel, and landed at 1635 hours. Formation was on the ragged side on the way down, but closed in over Wethersfield. Lt. Col. Kendig led the formation down—for the first time the Squadron flown a 21-plane peel off. Upon landing and taxiing to our dispersal area, we met the trucks—one for officers and their baggage and one for enlisted men and their baggage. The Enlisted Men occupy three huts, originally WAAF [Women’s Auxiliary Air Force] quarters, about ¼ mile from the mess hall. The Officers had the same type quarters in a more congested area. Wethersfield is well dispersed, but rather level— good biking country. There were many signs all over the Base pointing to the mess hall. Everything seems as our C.O. said it would be. For a while we would do nothing but eat, sleep, and play ball. Lt. ‘Mac’ of the Mess readied a good supper. Queues weren’t long and there were seconds. The Officers ate on the other side of the hall from the men. There were many meadows about the area, which the men used for baseball. In the evening there was nothing to do except get settled as comfortably as possible. Enlisted men brought out their radios and rigged them up. Then out came the cards and games went on far into the night. The Officers continued with their games of Bridge and Hearts. Operations, Intelligence, and Communications offices were set up temporarily in administrative quarters near the Control Tower. Men in due time found the washrooms, the shower rooms, and the NAAFI, [British canteen for military] with its bottled beer. All in all, it was an excellent set-up. There was some discomfort however—the ‘gentle reminder’ of the V
bombs. Quite a few men were sitting in the NAAFI drinking brew and bantering a bit around 2045 hours. Suddenly there was a terrific tremor, and in about 15 seconds concussion shook the building. Mouths dropped open—beer was left in the glasses. The bartender shot out the door like a flash—and right behind him in a rat race went the Americans. He made an abrupt turn to the left, switched off the lights in the corridor, and then sauntered back to the bar. Men piled on each other in the corridor, finally recovered, and grabbed the bartender. He told them the ‘noise’ was just a V-2, which had hit about seven or eight miles away. Men went back to their quarters, and soon lights were out. Then the sharp crack of the V-2s and the whommm---whommm of the V-1s began. Staccato ack-ack and sirens could be heard all through the night. Since the disturbances and the coldness of the evening in an unheated building were a novelty to most of the men, sleep did not come for many hours. Bombers could be heard going out all night, the softening up had started. Crew chiefs are required to guard their respective planes. One radio operator put on K.P. for 22 March. [Thursday] March 22, 1945 At about 0630 a V-2 awoke the Enlisted Men, so they went to breakfast and had eggs. After breakfast men played ball, read, and slept. Departments were set up in more permanent quarters. Tannoy [loud speaker] asked men to bring back empty beer bottles to the NAAFI before 1000 hours. Operations schedule was made up with Lt. [Burton P.] Jenkins and crew as the spare plane. Squadron is committed for 20 planes. Three planes out last night for about eight hours—one became stuck in the mud while taxiing, another got a flat tire, and the remaining plane damaged an elevator when prop wash of another plane caught the elevator before the radio operator could put on the locks. The set up for Intelligence and all briefing is an entirely original idea for this Squadron. It will coordinate all briefing and integrate the [flight] Serials more than ever before. We are to fly in Serial B-4, carrying the 13th Battalion of the 5th British Airborne Brigade of the 6th Airborne Division. Maps were assorted, Field Order No. 5 was read, and photographs of the westerly approaches of the DZ [Drop Zone] were put together. Navigators and pilots are to be briefed tonight at 2000 hours. Nothing to do now but play some ball, and eat. Lt. Col. Kendig got another refusal from Col. Berger, the Group C.O. when he asked if he could go on the mission. Key personnel will fly only when it is absolutely necessary. Consolidated Group briefings began at 2000 hours tonight. Pilots and navigators were told that we were to haul the ‘Red Devils’ of the 6th British Division, that D-day was Saturday, 24 March, H-hour was 1000, and that we were to drop at H plus 11 minutes. Mission was to be called VARSITY, and the entire operation [ground and airborne] was known as PLUNDER-VARSITY. Men were told of the A-1 priority given to Troop Carrier for use of fighters, fighter-bombers, and heavy bombers in and around the Drop Zone. The DZ for our Squadron [and the 36th] was DZ ‘B’, and our first Serial [C-47 formation] was the first to be over it. We were to pass over DZ ‘A’ [Serial B-3, 45th and 37th squadrons], the drop zone which Col. [Mars] Lewis was to drop on. We were to drop over the Rhine, and effect an airborne landing in an area about 6½ miles east of the Rhine. The course is an excellent one, and the close ground support seems to be the best we’ve ever had. That and the fighter cover make this mission seem a ‘snap’—a ‘milk run.’ As a rule, the men are a bit leery of the optimism of Group Briefing Officers—this time it is different. A Lt. Col. Luard, C.O. of the British 13th Battalion, whom we are to drop, was the guest-briefing officer. This was a combined airborne envelopment with the British dropping to the north, and immediately [southwest?] of this line while other Wings [50th and 53rd TCWs] would drop the American 17th Airborne Division—a Division which we moved to France quite a while ago. There were two Field Orders—both Field Order
No. 5, one written by the British and the other by the Americans. This was the first time our Squadron hauled the British Troopers into combat. We were a bit anxious about their jumping time—on practice missions last spring, they were a bit slow. Well, Col. Luard, who is a rather tall chap and rugged as they come, proved with his contagious humor that we had nothing to be afraid of. Their battle cry was “Tally-Ho”. His men would not wear helmets. They were going to put on their Red Berets when they touch the ground. He believes that ‘Jerry’ bullets go through helmets and berets just as effectively, and anyway, their helmets and ‘Jerry’s’ look too much alike. The Royal Artillery was going to ‘apple pie’ the area in the vicinity of the DZs and the LZs. ‘Apple pie,’ Col. Luard explained, was a term used by the Royal Artillery for shelling all known flak positions. The shell is so fused that it explodes eight feet before it hits the ground—‘worries’ the life out of Jerry ack-ack crews, but doesn’t worry the ground at all. This Colonel was confident of success and full of courage—a good humored man, a hard taskmaster, a man a fellow would want to follow. He was convinced that this mission was to be a fox hunting do—he intended to catch German fox. When the meeting broke up, the Squadron felt convinced that they were going fox hunting, and the enthusiasm and pace of the ‘chase’ reassured all that the humor of the Colonel’s ‘tallyho’ would be felt shortly by the enemy.He showed his hunting horn, a little bronze horn, which all Officers in the Brigade carry. He will use it to assemble his Battalion. The last time the Battalion jumped they made a record assembly, taking only nine minutes. Quite a chap this red devil was, and quite a show to come. The overall picture of PLUNDER-VARSITY showed excellent planning—we would be over enemy terrain about eight minutes, maybe less, and maybe, if the Scots move far enough, we’ll be flying over friendly ground forces all the way. We are to drop at 662 feet indicated at 110 miles per hours, make a left turn short of the Reich’s Autobahn, and come out at 150 miles per hour on deck or in a climb at the discretion of the Serial Leader, Maj. Keiser. VARSITY looks like a real ‘milk run.’ But something always happens on these ‘snap’ missions. Enlisted men had a movie in the mess hall tonight: “None But the Lonely Heart;”—a different type movie, packed with emotion. Officers will see the same movie tomorrow night. Snacks were served after the movie to all and beer was brewed until 2300. V-2s began to fall again, southeast of us. All went to bed—just as the sirens began wailing to the south. Bomber formations out again tonight in great force, B-17s were roaring over us for three hours this morning—softening up still going on. Moon is in ¾ phase—one more day to go, and men are in good spirits. Some mail, more packages than first class, was flown down from Cottesmore today. Col. Berger gave strict orders for Tannoy not to sound Red Alerts—only an alert in case of attack. Men will sleep more thus. (To be continued in the next issue: May’s reporting on the final preparations for VARSITY and the day of the mission. For those interested in details of the mission, “The Last Drop – Operation Varsity, March 24-25, 1945;” by Stephen L. Wright, was recently published by Stackpole Books.)
Spring 09 / AMICI 27
Giovanni Gullo, Pat Feichter & Pino Lombardo The 3 Founders Of Sister City
Fighter & Founder of Sister City By Nancy Colby Elk Grove Village Sister City is deeply saddened by the loss one of its co-founders, Giuseppe “Pino” Lombardo. On December 10, 2008, his six-month battle with liver cancer came to an end. Pino was a fighter. He was diagnosed with celiac disease over five years ago. Celiac disease is an autoimmune digestive disease that damages the villi of the small intestine. It interferes with absorption of nutrients from food, making the body unable to absorb nutrients into the bloodstream. Pino, a native of Termini Imerese, grew up with two brothers and one sister. He married his long time sweetheart, Rosa Lopinto, over forty years ago. They have two daughters, Annamarie and Marcella, along with four grandchildren. He was a very hard working family man, always striving to be the best husband, father and grandfather for his family. Pino was an attorney, but he never practiced law. He was an entrepreneur and ran his own successful real estate business for many years. He was a tremendous example of a courageous man with a servant’s heart. Before retiring eight years ago, Pino worked for the commune of Italy for 15 years. He made sure something as little as the street lights working properly to
large projects about town beautification were completed. He loved and deeply admired his town. A generous, warm and loving man, Pino‘s desire to promote and preserve our Italian American heritage will live on in his memory. He was instrumental in getting the Sister City started. He wholeheartedly believed in the Sister City concept and worked tirelessly for two years gathering information meeting with mayors and dignitaries. Pino along with Giovanni Gullo, chairman of the Elk Grove Village Italian Sister City and Pat Feichter, Village Trustee, believed in the Sister City concept and through perseverance and many months of hard work, the Sister Cities incorporated on July 20, 2000. The three men understood the need to educate people of the Village of Elk Grove and surrounding suburbs with a richer understanding of other cultures. He was a very special man, a man of good character with ambitious purposes and a congenial disposition. He possessed good morals and felt a high sense of personal responsibility. He was a true dedicated public servant for all. Everyone will miss Pino’s kindness, generosity and inspiration.
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www.cumberlandchapels.com 28 AMICI / Spring 09
C H I C A G O
THE BEST OF BOTH WORLDS By Louie Giampa Adjustments. That is the position I am in right now. Living in Las Vegas for 35 years, my blood is so thin, it is like a watery marinara sauce. This is my first real winter in such a long time that I wonder if I made the right move. Lets do some comparisons- Chicago verses Las Vegas. The streets in Las Vegas are smooth, wide and the have turning lanes, it makes traveling pleasurable. In Chicago the streets are narrow, and you wonder why they allow parking on some of the streets. LV does not know what a pot hole is, Chicago has many, some so deep you would think there is another city underneath. And my God, they are ALWAYS fixing and patching these streets; next year they will be doing it all over again! Churches, Las Vegas has few churches, here and there, you really have to look hard to find one, they may be beautiful, but too modern. Chicago has churches all over the place; many are older than Las Vegas. Chicago has the best architecture. Many of the churches look like cathedrals. The Skyline Vegas is beautiful with all the colored lights it looks inviting and it is definitely exciting with all the beautiful resorts, but lets face it, it is not real brick or marble. The Chicago skyline, is beautiful as well, it is a REAL city. Museums- Vegas has none, Chicago has it all. Chicago has NEIGHBORHOODS, Las Vegas is a melting pot, and everyone is everywhere. You do not see rust on cars in Vegas. Rust is considered a color in Las Vegas. Chicago it’s a disease. In Vegas you keep your cars clean, the weather is nice and when you valet your car you want it to look nice. Chicago, some people don’t even take the snow or ICE off their windshield. Ah, the Police, In Vegas you do not see any, they concentrate solely on the strip. That’s their main concern; keep it nice and orderly for the tourists. Living there over 30 years, I only had 2 tickets. Chicago, I’ve been here a few months and I’ve been stopped 5 times and already been cited twice. Chicago cops are much nicer than Suburban cops, at least you can talk to them. Did meet an understanding one in Park Ridge, but still gave me the citation. With exciting new restaurants, and wonderful food in Vegas. First class chefs and the best of the best are there. Chicago has lots of the same, but many mom and pop restaurants, bakeries, all over the city. Sooo many great places to go. The weather, Give me Vegas on this one. Cannot beat it. You can barbeque anytime of the year and not worry about it raining. Hardly any flies or mosquitoes, it has the best weather for 3 of its seasons, but the summer can be brutal. I hate that expression, BUT IT IS A DRY HEAT! When it is a 120 degrees-it is HOT. And you
definitely need a pool to survive. Health issues Healthier in Vegas. A lot of salad eaters-portion conscious and more physical activities. You will order an Ice tea before ordering a coke or coffee. Chicago, everyone eats fried foods and not too concerned of the healthier side of ordering. and everyone is a coffee drinker. Friends, I am so fortunate here. I have some great friends back in Vegas; I wouldn’t change for the world. Believe me, Vegas is tough in making lasting friendships. Chicago, friends since childhood, whether they are from grade school or the neighborhood. They are still there when you need them. Oh, by the way, I have a new friend and his name is ART that is short for Arthritis. Now when I wake up or get up off the couch, I have to do it slowly. Once I straighten up I’m ok. In Vegas, Art is not around; you jump out of bed and start your day. Fast Food Restaurants, Better in Vegas, and they get the orders right 99% of the time. In Vegas there is a McDonalds, Burger King, Taco Bell, KFC, Sonic and Jack in the Box all next to each other-EVERY MILE. Chicago, far and few between they are rude and mess your order 75% of the time. Beef Sandwiches-only 3 I know of in Vegas and NO comparison to Chicago. I am in heaven here- I find good beef and hot dog place’s everywhere. Grocery Stores, Vegas has wonderful large isles, great selections, and bright lights, and even slot machines, all open 24 hours. Compared to Chicago, they are expensive. Chicago, our lunchmeat cannot be beat. You can by a pound of ham for $3.99 here in Chicago. However in Vegas nothing is less than $7.99 a pound and that’s when it is on sale! Meats and other groceries are much cheaper here. Homes are absolutely beautiful in Vegas. Neighborhood homes there are all the same though. They are all either light beige or dark beige. The only areas to live in are gated which I like. Chicago I love because everyone takes pride in his or her homes. On the weekends everyone plants flowers cuts their own grass and every house is different. Blows my mind with the 1 car garages, Vegas, you have a 3 car garage. In Vegas there are no basements, I like the basements here-but they flood. Oh, I saw my 1st rat in the city. I’m not talking a little mouse; here this was more like the size of a cat. Well Vegas does have field mice and maybe a few scorpions here and there but that is that. So here I am, and I will try to make the best of it. With all the snow, cold, traffic, congestion, potholes, horn blowing and stress, and more snow-Chicago has the 4 things that Vegas does not have. They are, My Sister Carla, my niece Dominica, my Great Niece Isabella and my nephew Joey, and to me my friends, and that is PRICELESS!
L A S V E G A S
Spring 09 / AMICI 29
Chef Vincent Tropepe
wheel goes round and round. Here we have a young, up and coming chef from Brooklyn. Not just another chef, this one is going places. He does everything from creative baking to mouthwatering entrees. Let me start from the beginning. Vincent was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York. At a very early age, he assisted his father in their family business specializing in their chocolate company There you would find Vincent carving chocolate adding to the wonderful presentation of their well-known creations. While in school, he was hired as a line cook at Mama Tury’s Italian Restaurant in Bensenhurst, New York. At the age of 19, he started to take control outside the duties of a line cook, proving to the owners his understanding and passion of the restaurant business. By the age of 20 he was promoted to their executive chef. He added many improvements to their existing menu and kitchen staff, making this restaurant even more popular and tripling its business. He also cooked for Hillary Clinton, Phil Rizzuto, Rudy Guiliani, Yogi Berra and P. Diddy. He often did some 30 AMICI / Spring 09
Private catering in their homes. Just a note, about New York City, they have approximately 60.000 restaurants, so their level of service and cooking standards is much higher than any other city. It is very demanding and competitive. This is what he was surrounded with, no wonder why he became articulate and creative in his work. Important to him is presentation and consistency. In 2003 he was the personal chef to singer Michael Bolton. He did this for one year. Can you imagine? How would you like to wake up and have your personal chef make you a Frittata? Plan your lunch, let’s say with a personalized pizza, and for dinner, why not some home-made pasta with a side of Brasiole. This was not the case here. Michael Bolton’s requests were simple and light and most important, healthy. OK, so I would order cantaloupe, but I would make sure that it was wrapped with prosciuttos. In 2005 he opened his own cookie company called Grandma Helina’s Italian Cookie Company Inc. Naturally all home-made, gift wrapped and supplied to stores, gift shop’s, supermarkets, including Wegman’s. The Trump organization also sang praises over his delicious product. He is now in the process of opening “Forgetaboutit!”, A new Food Service and catering company. Chef Tropepe is presently teaching a Culinary Arts course at Mercy Vocational High School, the only co-institutional vocational school of its type. He had to move to Philadelphia for this, leaving behind his family and friends and a city he loved. He now ventures in South Philly and sampling the foods of their Italian neighbourhoods. What he likes about teaching at Mercy is to see the interest and dedication of these young students and future chefs of America. He has just finished writing a new cookbook called “STUFFED” which is in print now. This new cookbook is the first of its kind. It is dedicated to the preparation and cooking of stuffed food items. Some examples are his stuffed Portobello mushrooms with humus and cream cheese. A chicken dish stuffed with figs and Gorgonzola, on a bed of proscuitto di Parma. Another dish is a roast beef stuffed with blue cheese, bacon, mushrooms and shrimp with a side of Parmesan potatoes. Hungry yet? I can’t wait for this book to come out, look for it and get “STUFFED”. Talking with Chef Tropepe, I asked who is one of his favourite chefs on the food network. Tyler Florence comes to his mind immediately. I can’t agree with him more, he is one of my favourites as well. He likes his recipes, style of cooking and preparation. How would you like to hang out with these two? My dream would be is to be on TV with them, let them cook up a storm and let me be the sampler, critic, call it what you want, but LET IT BE ME! I always like to ask everyone, what would eat if you were told, “this is your last meal” what would you order? Chef Tropepe choice would be a Penne Pasta, with a sauce (gravy) of meatballs, sausage, brasiole and spare ribs. All this with a crusty loaf of Italian bread and a mellow aged wine. After all that, in his spare time he likes to just relax, a visit to the gym now and then, and watching the food network on TV. Chef Vincent Tropepe was just inducted in the Les Amis D’Escoffier Culinary Society. He was voted one of the top 200 chefs in America, 103 out of 200 to be exact! That is one acknowledgment to be proud of. He also has under his belt, one of the highest –ranking students at the Institute of New York, concentrating on Culinary and Pastry Arts and Restaurant Management. He was honoured with a Gold Medal in this field. He has mastered 15 different cuisines, Greek, Italian, Japanese, Spanish, South American, just to name a few. He was accepted to London, England’s Stafford University, where he received the Chancellors Academic Scholarship as a distant learning student. He has consulted in over 300 restaurant and food service establishments. There is no end to this fine, up and coming Chef. Look for more on him in the future. Chicago, you read it here 1st, in the Amici, I TOLD YOU SO!! Ciao Louie
Recipes From Book “Stuffed” By Vincent Tropepe Basil Stuffed Steak ½ cup 2¼ cup 1 cup 3 2 tbsp. 3 lb To taste To taste
Sun Dried Tomatoes, minced Basil, chopped Parmesan Cheese, shredded Garlic Cloves, thinly sliced Olive Oil Sirloin Steak Salt Black Pepper
Stuffed Zucchini with Ricotta 2 ½ tsp ½ tsp ½ tsp ½ cup 3 tbsp 1½ tsp 2½ ½ tsp ½ tsp
Zucchini, halved lengthwise Salt Black Pepper Ricotta Cheese Mozzarella Cheese, shredded Grated Cheese, of choice Lemon Juice Basil, dry Salt Black Pepper
Portabello Caps Stuffed with Hummus 2 tbsp 6 ½ cup ½ ¾ To taste To taste 1 ¼
Olive Oil Portabello mushroom caps, stems and ribs removed Cream Cheese, softened Green Bell Pepper, diced fine Red Pepper Hummus Salt Black Pepper lemon pepper seasoning
Directions: Bring 2 cups of water to a boil and add sun-dried tomatoes. Turn off the heat and let\stand in the water for 10 minutes. Drain and chop tomatoes. For the filling, combine softened tomatoes, basil, cheese, garlic and oil. Mix well. With a long, sharp knife make slits into the meat. Spoon filling into the slits. Roll up jellyroll style and secure with butcher’s twine. Place on a medium heated barbeque or until a broiler until desired cook is reached.
Directions: Preheat oven to 450 degrees and grease baking pan. Scoop out seeds of each zucchini half with a spoon. Season the hollowed-out halves with % tsp of salt and pepper. Mix the Ricotta, mozzarella, grated cheese, lemon juice, basil and additional salt and pepper, incorporate well. Evenly distribute the ricotta mixture among the zucchini halves and place on greased baking pan. Bake in a preheated oven until the zucchini is tender and the filling begins to brown. This will take between 15 - 20 minutes.
Directions: Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Sear the Portobello mushrooms for 3 minutes on each side. Mix the cream cheese, green peppers and hummus until well incorporated. Season the mushroom caps with salt and pepper on each side. Place the mushrooms in a baking pan, stem side up. Sprinkle with lemon juice and then fill with humus mixture.
Buffalo Chicken Tenders with Celery and Blue Cheese Salad Ingredients: canola oil 1 gallon* corn flour for dredging* 1 1/2 pounds chicken tenders salt and pepper to taste* 3/4 cup Steve and Ed’s Buffalo Wing Sauce, or other buffalo wing sauce of choice 2 celery hearts, sliced on a bias 1 1/4 cups crumbled blue cheese 2/3 cup mayonnaise
Directions: Heat oil in a large pot to 400 degrees. Dredge chicken tenders in corn flour. Add tenders to hot oil and stir occasionally during cooking. Cook for about 5 minutes or until tenders are golden brown and cooked through. Drain on paper towels and season with salt and pepper. Toss in a large bowl with hot sauce. While wings are cooking, combine celery hearts, blue cheese and mayo in a large bowl. Mix to coat and season with salt and pepper. To serve, divide celery salad among four plates and pile an equal amount of tenders on top of each salad.
Beef with Salsa Verde, Radicchio and Sour Cream
Ingredients: 1 tablespoon corn oil* 1 ½ pounds ground beef salt and pepper* 1 16 oz can Old El Paso Refried Beans, or other refried beans of choice 1/2 cup water* 1 cup Frontera’s Salsa Verde, or other green salsa of choice 3 cups (about 1 med head) shredded, radicchio ½ cup sour cream
Directions: Heat oil in a very large sauté pan until very hot. Add ground beef and stir to break up. Season beef with salt and pepper. Whisk together the refried beans and water in a medium sized bowl; add mixture to the beef and stir. Simmer until beef is completely cooked. Stir in the salsa verde. Divide half of radicchio among four large bowls and spoon beef mixture on top. Top each bowl with some sour cream and the remaining radicchio. 32 AMICI / Spring 09
Venuti’s Ristorante and
Banquets The Venuti Family
VITTORIO VENUTI HAS ALWAYS TOLD HIS CHILDREN, “MONEY COMES AND GOES”.HOWEVER YOUR REPUTATION IS WHAT MAKES YOU RICH. A TESTAMENT TO HIS PHILOSOPHY IS THE GRAND BANQUET AND RESTAURANT FACILITY, BEARING THE FAMILY NAME IN ADDISON. THE STRUCTURE WAS DESIGNED WITH CLASSIC ROMAN ARCHITECTURE, AND ITALIAN MARBLE. THIS IS A LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT, OF 42 YEARS OF HARD WORK AND DEDICATION, IN THE DINING INDUSTRY. THE LOBBY OF VITTORIO’S PALAZZO FEATURES A SOARING 30-FOOT CEILING AND TWIN, CURVING STAIRCASES, WITH GOLD RAILINGS, WHICH EMBRACE AND MAKE A PERFECT FOUNTAIN, PHOTO BACKDROP. AS YOU MAKE YOUR WAY THROUGH THE DYNAMIC FACILITY, YOU WILL DISCOVER A WEDDING CHAPEL AND RECEPTION ROOM, THREE PRIVATE BRIDAL ROOMS, RESTAURANT, LOUNGE, TWO VERANDAS, AND A BANQUET AREA WITH FIVE BARS AND PARTY STYLE SEATING FOR 750, AND THEATER STYLE SEATING FOR 1,000.APPROXIMATELY SIX YEARS AGO, VENUTI KNEW HE WANTED TO EXPAND, SO HE PURCHASED A TRACT OF VACANT LAND THAT WOULD ALLOW HIS DREAM, TO COME TRUE, AND BUILD THE SPACIOUS VENUTI’S. “HERE IS WHERE I WANT TO BE.” HE TOLD HIS FAMILY AFTER 11/2 YEARS, OF DESIGN WORK AND THREE YEARS, IN GETTING REQUIRED PERMITS TO BUILD THE FACILITY. VENUTI’S HOSTED ITS FIRST WEDDING APRIL 8, 2006. VENUTI’S RESTAURANT AND THEIR ADJOINING LOUNGE OPENED JULY 5TH, OF THE SAME YEAR. THE BANQUETS ROOMS ARE PROUDLY NAMED, VENEZIA, VERONA, VOLARE AND VITA (THE VENUTI’S LINK THE LETTER “V.”)
VENUTI GREW UP IN ABRUZZO, ITALY. HE CAME TO CHICAGO IN 1958. HE WORKED IN THE STEEL MILLS, AND CLEANED THEATERS. ONE YEAR LATER HE BROUGHT HIS FIANCÉE TO THE UNITED STATES TO GET MARRIED. HE AND HIS WIFE, ALBA MADE THEIR HOME IN CHICAGO. IN 1960 VENUTI WORKED AT A DINER, AND THEN AT THE LEGENDARY GINO’S EAST. HE WENT INTO BUSINESS FOR HIMSELF IN 1965. HE OPENED HIS OWN RESTAURANT ON ST. CHARLES ROAD, IN VILLA PARK. WHERE HE LATER MOVED IT TO NORTH AVENUE. NOW IN HIS 70’S, VENUTI WAS IN ITALY, WHERE HE PURCHASED TWO PASTA MACHINES, WITH 20 DIES, WHICH ENABLE VENUTI’S TO SERVE MORE CUTS OF PASTA. MRS. VENUTI IS NOT AS BUSY IN THE FAMILY BUSINESS NOW, AS SHE WAS IN THE PAST, HOWEVER SHE CONTINUES, WITH HER HUSBAND TO MAKE MAMA V’S LIMONCELLO. THE VENUTI PRIVATE LABEL IS SOLD, AND SERVED AT VENUTI’S. DAY TO DAY RESPONSIBILITIES ARE BOW SHARED BY THE VENUTI’S THREE CHILDREN, FRANK, ALEX AND MARIA. THE SENIOR VENUTI IS STILL, AND ALWAYS WILL BE THE BACKBONE OF THE FAMILY BUSINESS, FRANK SAYS, “HE HAS THE VISION AND PERSEVERANCE, AND THIS IS ALL HIS VISION.” THROUGHOUT HIS CAREER, HIS DAD HAS BEEN GENEROUS, FRANK SAYS, “HE WILL OFTEN GIVE FOOD AWAY TO THOSE IN NEED. HE BELIEF IS NOT TO SQUEEZE PEOPLE. IF YOU CAN HELP A PERSON, HE SAYS, HELP. HE’S ALWAYS WORKING, ALWAYS THINKING ABOUT THE BUSINESS. HE IS A HERO TO ALL OF US.”
2251 W. Lake St. Addison, IL 60101 Phone: 630-376-1500 Fax: 630-376-1503 www.VenutisBanquets.com e-mail. firstname.lastname@example.org
By Nick Stellino
Sitting area in the main lobby
SAINT REGIS GRAND HOTEL IN ROME I was busy packing my bags, hurrying about at the last minute. To make things worse, there was a power failure and the upstairs was hot and muggy that afternoon. It was late October and here in Southern California it felt just like mid August. We still had laundry to do, but nothing worked in the house. Could it get worse than this? I do not think so… The plane leaves tomorrow morning and there is plenty of organizing still to be done. In a couple of hours it will be dark and, with no electricity, it will be quite an adventure to get this packing done. Some people just sweat. Not me. It pours out of me like a fountain. The more I think about it, the worse it gets. Little puddles are forming all around me. Where is the AC/DC converter? “Naaanc…!!!” I yell “Where did you put it?” It is never where I left it. My wife has a way of moving my stuff around that drives me crazy. “I think it’s in the garage in one of the old boxes,” she called
back. I silently count to ten, hoping it will help calm me down. You would think that after twentysix years of being together I would have this routine down. Well, apparently not. I do not know about you, but my garage is where old things go to hide. Once you put something in a box there, good luck finding it again when you need it. Half insane from the heat, I stood in the middle of the garage pulling stuff from the shelves, surrounded by the discarded contents, rummaging into half empty boxes, driving myself crazy. Then it happened. I recognized it right away. Tucked deep in one of the corners of the cardboard box, there was a small tin box. Inside a little pebble rattled free. Twenty-Six years ago, Nanci and I went to Rome together for the first time. I remember standing in front of the Grand Hotel (now the St. Regis Grand). We were staying then at a little pensione, not too far away. We ended up in front of the Grand
The Main lobby 34 AMICI / Spring 09
Main hallway leading to the old Elevator Hotel by accident, on our way to Piazza Navona. I was just out of school and had no job, so I had taken a few weeks to travel with Nanci around Italy. The Grand Hotel was so beautiful—I had to go in and see it. The lobby was an astonishing piece of work, plush and elegant. Colorful hand-painted murals surrounded walls of mirrors that shimmered with light. It all looked so elegant, so expensive— so far out of my reach. As we walked out of the lobby, I told Nanci right then and there, “One day you and I will stay in this hotel. We will be married and we will be rich.” Then we laughed as all lovers do when dreaming of something fantastic, which almost never comes true. But I was not kidding. I meant what I said. In Sicily we have a tradition: When you make a promise to yourself—one that you truly wish to keep—take a memento with you, a little souvenir to remind you of it forever. I bent down and picked up a pebble, placing it inside an empty tin of mints. I slipped it into my pocket. It was a special amulet that, like many good intentions, was put away and then forgotten, stashed deep in this cardboard box, eventually resurfacing inside my garage. I sat alone in my garage, hot, sweaty, lost in thought, and surrounded by a mess of boxes and forgotten things. I was, I think, the perfect picture of a mad man. It was in this less than ideal setting that I pondered how much change I have seen in my own life in the past twenty-six years.
Our Daily Fruit Basket A few weeks later, a black limousine pulled up to the curb to drop us off. My wife looked out the window and then back at me— amazed and surprised. There it stood in all of its beauty, actually even more beautiful than I remembered it: Rome’s St. Regis Grand Hotel. The bellhops came around to help us out of the car and load our bags on the cart. “May we escort you to the front desk, sir?” a young man in uniform asked. “Just a moment,” I replied. My hand reached inside my vest and I pulled out an old, dented tin box. My fingers opened it slowly. I carefully grasped the little pebble inside and then held it high for all to see. “It’s about time for this pebble to go home,” I said. I knelt down and placed the pebble on the ground in front of the Grand Hotel. The limo driver and the small army of bellhops looked at me quizically. My wife and I stared into each other’s eyes for just a moment. We both knew what it meant. We walked slowly toward the lobby, holding hands, as if coming home. It is very important to keep one’s promises, especially the ones we make to ourselves. As for being rich,…..well, my wife loves me. My cats, too. I have a great family and plenty of friends. I am rich….. indeed. www.nickstellino.com Hotel’s website: http.//stregisgrand.hotelinroma.com
The Rotunda by the Piano Bar
Spring 09 / AMICI 35
What Luigi Basco Taught America About Italian Americans By Dominic Candeloro Executive Director, American Italian Historical Association with thanks to Madeline Mancini and Felicia Reilly of the Museum of Broadcast Communications. In the long view of history---racism, prejudice, and distrust of foreigners have been the standard rule of conduct. In the early history of their migration to the United States, Italians, though considered “white on arrival” were relegated to somewhere near the bottom of the racial pecking order that placed “Aryans” on top and Blacks on the bottom. Only since the 1920s and the work of sociologist Franz Boas and later the anthropology of Margaret Meade have even the intelligentsia entertained the notion of cultural relativism and the equality of races and nationalities. Despite the negative feelings generated toward Italian immigrants by Italy’s status as an enemy in World War II, popular culture in the postwar period experienced what I see as an “Italian American Trend.” Led by Frank Sinatra, this sustained fad included the works of Perry Como, Vic Damone, Rose Mary Clooney, Louis Prima, Tony Bennett, Dean Martin and the sports exploits of Joe DiMaggio and many others. More than ever before, American mass media was exposed to Italian American culture. When combined with previous public images (such as the gangster portrayals), the message that this movement brought to American consciousness of Italian ethnics became the basis for the treatment of Italian Americans for the rest of the century. One of the key elements in the Italian Trend was the fictional character, Luigi Basco of the hit radio (and later TV) program “Life with Luigi.” Each week from 1948 to 1954 millions of listeners tuned in to be entertained and “educated” about Italian immigrant life. The program was produced by non-Italian Cy Howard and starred Irishman J. Caroll Naish. This was the golden age of radio, when everyone was listening and choices were limited to two or three network presentations. The public impact of “Life with Luigi” was far greater than that of best-selling novels about 36 AMICI / Spring 09
Italian Americans such as Di Donato’s Christ in Concrete. I cannot think of any other Italian American themed publication or production that got wider dissemination than “Life with Luigi” in that era. In short, Luigi explained Italian American life to the general public. Luigi also provided a mirror to Italian Americans that validated their experiences. In many ways “Life with Luigi” was to Italian Americans what “Amos ‘n Andy” was to African Americans----a comedic depiction of a subculture in which the lines between laughing with and laughing at the ethnic group were often blurred. It was also a show in which respect for the ethnic group of lack thereof lay in the mind of the beholder. Other ethnic programs on radio and TV in that era include “I Remember Mama,” about a Norwegian family in San Francisco and the Goldbergs, which depicted a Jewish family in New York. And though many among us might urge that we all “lighten up, it’s only a comedy,” the history of mass media and advertising reminds us that the repeated impact of sounds and images DOES make a difference. We can get a notion of what America thought about Italian Americans by analyzing in some detail the structure and content of this popular (but fictitious) show. The creator and producer of “Life with Luigi” was Cy Howard. In 1947, Howard’s “My Friend Irma” radio series became one American radio’s top shows. In 1948 Howard launched the Luigi show. Growing up with early TV, he was also a writer for Milton Berle and Danny Thomas, worked for Desilu Studios, and in 1970 made his film directorial debut with “Lovers and Other Strangers”, a film with strong Italian American themes. The series was originally called The Little Immigrant, but the name was changed before the first broadcast. Luigi Basco (played by J. Carroll Naish) was a recent Italian immigrant. An established relative, Pasquale, owner of Pasquale’s Spaghetti Palace on Halsted Street in Chicago, had paid Luigi’s $38 boat fare to America in hope of getting Luigi to marry his portly daughter, Rosa. Alan Reed (later the voice of Fred Flintstone) played Pasquale, and Jody Gilbert played Rosa. Most of the plot lines and the dramatic tension of the radio plays revolve around Luigi’s unwillingness to marry Rosa as Luigi attempted to make his way in his new American environment. The late 1940s was an era of wholesome entertainment, which by today’s standards seems corny. Like most radio shows, Luigi had a
PART 1 live orchestra that provided music to set the mood. The show opened with “Chicago, That Wonderful Town” to provide a geographic setting. The dialogue began with “Oh Mari,” as a background for Luigi reading his weekly letter to Mamma. This was an introduction that laid out the topic for each episode and introduced a problem that Luigi had to confront. In describing the folkways and culture of America, Luigi would make a series of humorous, but gentle, malapropisms. Enter Pasquale who would make several statements that illustrated his basic stupidity and duplicity. The two would then engage in amusing “who’s on first” type of banter in impeccable broken English. Often Pasquale would stumble into describing himself in such a way (“I’ma heada da block”), that Luigi could innocently sum up his comments with something like “ Ia alwaysa know that youa bigga block head.” Whatever problem Luigi was wrestling with in the episode, Pasquale promised to fix, if Luigi would only promise to marry Rosa. Luigi would then demur with the line “No, Rosa isa too fatta for a me.” This segment would end with Luigi going off to night school singing “America, I love you! You like a papa to me. From ocean to ocean….” Introduced by a few up-tempo bars of “School Days,” the next scene would begin with Miss Spaulding taking roll at night school. In keeping with the lighthearted, melting pot spirit of the show, Luigi’s fellow students in the citizenship night school classes
were immigrants. Hans Conreid played Schultz, an outspoken German with rheumatism and a bossy wife. Mary Shipp played Miss Spaulding, the teacher of the night class. Joe Forte played Horowitz, and Ken Peters played Olsen. The class members usually advised Luigi, recommending a straightforward and honest solution to his problem.
In the middle of the show, Luigi would continue his letter to Mamma and carry the story line a little further. Next there would be some interaction with the a government bureaucrat or businessman that would land Luigi in hot water. In the following scene, Luigi would agree reluctantly to a solution presented by Pasquale---in exchange for Luigi’s promise to marry Rosa ---”Alla righta Pasquale, I marry Rosa.” And each week, miraculously, there would be some turn of events that would take Luigi off the hook. And the orchestra would strike up “Oh, Mari” under the monologue of Luigi finishing his letter to Mamma. The Luigi formula repeated many of the same gags each week and listeners smiled with delight as they anticipated familiar punch lines. The sponsors of the program, Wrigley’s Spearmint Gum,
describe the show as a good-natured program for Americans from all walks of life.
his answer was, “No thatsa notta my boat.” And so it went.
Using the above format, “Life with Luigi” explored scores of topics. In the 70 episodes that I surveyed, most of the storylines depended on the “Greenhorn” experience common to all newcomers and to native-born Americans alike. In a sense we are all outsiders, uninitiated, and inexperienced in the ways of our fast-changing urban world. Listeners could readily empathize with Luigi’s trials and tribulations in getting insurance, buying a first car, going on a date with an American girl, getting a driver’s license, signing up for dance lessons at Arthur Murray, coping with the vagaries of returning gifts to Marshall Field’s, dealing with telephone and electric bill problems, filing income tax forms, and going to the dentist. Many times Luigi was taken in by a con man or given a hard time by lazy, self-important bureaucrats. In each episode, language problems and bad advice from Pasquale added up to difficulties with which all listeners could identify. In one episode Luigi was taking an induction exam for the Marine Corps. When asked if the object in a picture was a U-Boat,
Some of the episodes amounted to propaganda for good causes. For instance, Luigi was portrayed as a good citizen and strong supporter of the Big Brothers of America, the Boys Club, local civil defense, and as a blood donor. At least ten of the 70 episodes sampled had some kind of patriotic, community-minded message. Luigi was also very well informed about heroes of American history like Paul Revere, George Washington and Abraham Lincoln. The citizenship class gave the writers plenty of opportunities to insert patriotic factoids about the founding fathers. On July 10, 1949 a program epilogue urged listeners to “vote regularly. Freedom is everybody’s job.” During election season in early November 1949 the program focused on Luigi “electioneering” on behalf of proposition to expand school funding. Read Amici Journal for Part 2 of this most interesting book.
This article was first presented at a conference at Seton Hall University in December 2004 entitled”Real Stories: Discrimination and Defamation in the History of Italian Americans.” An expanded version of the article is slated to published as part of the conference proceedings in a book entitled Anti-Italianism: Discrimination and Defamation in the history of Italian Americans edited by William J.Connell. By Dominic Candeloro, former president and executive director of the American Italian Historical Association, with thanks to Madeline Mancini and Felicia Reilly of the Museum of Broadcast Communications.
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205 W. Randolph Suite 1550 5839 W. Belmont Ave. Chicago, IL Tel: 773.281.8744
We also speak Polish Spring 09 / AMICI 37
Carlo, Gilberto, Giuliana & Luciano Benetton
Sisley Spring Summer
By Andrew Guzaldo Fabrica, Benetton Group’s communication research center, is a workshop for creativity situated in an 18th Century Villa in the Veneto countryside, restored and expanded by the Japanese architect Tadao Ando. Producing creativity (writing, composing, design, interactive, photography, film for cinema or video) means having input into the world. That’s what the young artists invited to Fabrica do to uncover the future. The centre is divided into various areas and is dedicated to the realization of ideas. Artists/researchers work under the guidance of professionals who are experts in their field and learn to become confident with the latest communications technologies. They work both on independent projects and on commission. The guiding principle of Fabrica is exploiting diversity as the basis of global communication and finding images which concentrate and express strong, universal issues, such as racism, fear and world hunger. In an era of economic and cultural ‘globalization’, creativity cannot afford to be ethnocentric. So the challenge for Fabrica is to bring together different cultural stimuli from all over the world in order to pick out completely new concepts which everyone can understand, and which carry messages with strong emotional content. This is not a ‘school’ in the conventional sense. At Fabrica there are no lessons or exams. Students’ work is subject to constant scrutiny and judged only on completion. Accordingly, the work completed by Fabrica students over the last ten years (exhibitions, conferences, publications, advertising campaigns, concerts, films and videos) is proof that Fabrica has already won the challenge it has set itself. Telephone 39 0422 519111 Fax 39 0422 519930
SISLEY FASHIONS 2009 38 AMICI / Spring 09
8313 W. LAWRENCE AV. NORRIDGE, IL 60706 TEL: 708.452.1545 FAX: 708.452.4475
FANTASTIC SERVICE REASONABLE PRICES CHARMING ATMOSPHERE
Come experience the Buonappetito taste of Italy!
Spring 09 / AMICI 39
Interview with TONY COSENTINO
A Page from the Past! By: CHUCK GIAMPA
ho would have thought that, almost 60 years ago, four kids who spent many hours playing cards in a basement that they would all eventually live in Las Vegas; three of them would eventually become hotel/casino executives. Art Garelli, his cousin Tony Cosentino, my brother, Louie, and I grew up in Little Italy. Taylor Street, in Chicago. Art and Tony would become casino executives, Louie would become a hotel executive at Caesars Palace. During this holiday season when we think of family and friends and sometimes of years gone by, Tony Cosentino and I got together for lunch at Green Valley Ranch to talk of our childhood, friends, family and the good times growing up together. Tony Cosentino Tony, Art and their friend, Bob Stella spent the summer in Las Vegas when Tony was 16 years old. Bob’s father was a casino executive and that summer convinced them that each would move to Las Vegas as soon as they were 21 years old. Upon Tony’s discharge from the service in 1966 he moved to Las Vegas to join his cousin and Bob. Tony has been a Senior Executive Host at Green Valley Ranch for over 6 years now. He started his casino career as a shill and 43 years later is still doing what he loves. Tony explained, “What wasn’t exciting when you were 21 years old? Las Vegas with the lights, the movie stars, the glamour! This town has been good to me. It’s a good town as long as you don’t get the habit of gambling. Since I’ve been here, it has grown from a small town to a big metropolis. We’re now sitting in a place (Green Valley Ranch) where you couldn’t get here except by helicopter only a few years ago. When I came to Las Vegas, you could have rented a cabin on Mt. Charleston for almost no money. Some people don’t see the beauty of it. You can ski in the winter; you can enjoy Lake Mead in the summer.” Tony brought up article I previously wrote about Rocky Graziano coming to our neighborhood. My father, who brought Rocky, took a picture of a group of us sitting on a stoop in front of my house (picture reprinted here). He listed our friends in the picture, “Ernie The Wagon, Mokie, Babe, Meldo, Dolly Girl…. I was 5 years old in the picture! Nobody knew we were broke. We were all the same. We came from a background where the world ended Front row L to R: Chuck Giampa, Rocky Graziano, Louie Giampa, Freddie Aleman on Taylor & Loomis, one block away from where we lived.” Although Tony was a few years younger than we were, Row 2, L to R: Ernie Di Silvestro sitting on the far left, Tony Colucci, Tony La Manna he was always chosen among the first when we picked sides to Row 3, L to R: Bobby Viti, Michael (Mokie) Pantone, Butchie Cerielli and Tony Cosentino play baseball on the street in the summer; football in the winter and Row 4, L to R: Nancy Serritella and Dolly (Di Natale) De Maria handball on the corner building, always on the street, of course. Regarding the benefits of living in Las Vegas, Tony continued, catering to the locals. That’s the reason why they’ve been successful in “Once you live here, it grows on you. If you’re a senior back East in the the Valley. Times are tough now and they are doing everything not to diswinter, you’re stuck inside. In Vegas, you can get up 3 AM, have break- rupt the lifestyles of their employees. Their philosophy and their loyalty fast for $1.99, and be among 80-100 people…..it’s a great release for se- to their employees exceed all of the other casinos. I’m in the winter of my niors. We have a good tax structure and the cost of living is good. As you career but these young brothers are the future of the success of Las Vegas. get older, the fear of getting old plays on your mind if you feel trapped. They are visionaries.” “In my business I’ve learned how important it is to be sincere Once you get used to this lifestyle, it’s hard to go back. If you want to and to treat everyone with respect. When you say ‘thank you’ mean it. work hard, play by the rules, it’s a great opportunity.” As a Senior Executive Host for Station Casinos he stated, “Sta- I’m very grateful. I have the greatest wife and two wonderful children. tion Casinos is very conscious of their responsibility to keep people work- Chuck, we’re both very fortunate. We have known each other for over 60 ing. It’s the best employee responsible casino in the industry. The owners, years and can relate to what I remember growing up with a humble backFrank and Lorenzo Fertitta, are very loyal to their workers. They provide ground. Families stood together. Our mothers were the glue that held us great benefits and a wonderful work environment. They’re always em- all together. Even the toughest guy on the corner sprinted home when his ployee oriented. Am I proud that they’re Italian Americans? Of course! 5’1” mother called for him to come home for dinner.” They never forget their humble beginnings. They built their credibility by 40 AMICI / Spring 09
TKINS A W Tel. 773-733-9552
atu N e r Pu
anic g r O l
Spring 09 / AMICI 41
Lorenzo’s Dining on Trattoria I
n south St. Louis, just below Interstate 44 and west of Kingshighway, lies one of the country’s most stable and vibrant Italian American communities - The Hill. City natives and savvy travelers know that this is the area to visit for great dining because the neighborhood boasts a number of excellent Italian restaurants. One of these, at Edward and Daggett, kitty-corner from the Volpi salumeria, is Lorenzo’s Trattoria. Owner-chef Larry Fuse, Jr.’s story is a little different than the typical Italian American restaurateur. Being a third generation Italian, Larry’s family is from the Lombardian town of Coggiono, in the beautiful Tre Laghi area. (Interestingly, the great majority of the Hill’s Italians come from the North, not the South.) Fuse’s grandfather worked in a restaurant in St. Louis’ old Little Italy downtown, but when he opened Lorenzo’s in1999 at the age of 23, Larry was the first in his family, to own a restaurant. Like most of the Hill’s Italian restaurants, Lorenzo’s Trattoria is very tastefully decorated and has a very comfortable feel to it. Its medium sized dining rooms are well lit, but the soft pastel colors of the walls and highlights lend the establishment a quiet, intimate ambience. The fully stocked semi-circular bar that one encounters on entering signals a lively atmosphere. It was the middle of the afternoon, and I was alone when I visited Lorenzo’s, so I had some fine Chianti Classico by the glass, but I still enjoyed perusing the nicely bound wine list. And what a list it is! The extensive selection includes for the Reds - 4 Brunellos, 5 Chiantis, 4 Barbarescos, 4 Amarones and 16 California Cabernets. For whites they have 7 Pinot Grigios and 10 California Chardonnays. For any local die-hards Lorenzo’s even offers some Missouri white! If you have a hankering for pizza there is a choice of Napolitan’-style variations, but Fuse is known for his gourmet concoctions so I began with a couple of appetizers from the dinner menu. I should say up front that every dish served at Lorenzo’s is a treat for the eyes as well as the taste buds, beginning with the first course. My first selection didn’t last long, some ravioli
stuffed with goat cheese in a wine and garlic sauce with mushrooms, onions, herbs, and lots of pancetta, tomato and basil. Then came a baseball-sized Arancino, crispily breaded and stuffed with succ--ulent rice, peas and seasoned beef. What made this treat remarkable, however, was that it was served in a pool of spicy marinara sauce and covered with a mixture of melted provolone and mozzarella. Very unique! I had been told by some friends that Lorenzo’s had some dynamite risotto dishes, so I tried the one with chicken, fresh tomatoes and grilled asparagus. Outstanding! And like all good risottos, every kernel of the fluffy arborio rice was firm and could be distinguished from every other morsel. Larry invited me to sample his homemade gnocchi (“We were one of the first places on the Hill to have it.”) and I’m glad I did. These potato-stuffed dumplings were not the little ones you usually encounter, but were big, juicy ones, the size of golf balls. What made them so fantastic, however, was that they were served in an exciting sauce made from Gorgonzola, fontina and Parmesan cheeses! When it came to the entrée, once more I took the advice of my friends who said, “Try the ossobuco.” When this dish was served, it looked so good, at first I could only gaze at it. On the menu it says, “Braised ossobuco with saffron risotto and orange gemolata.” To be honest I don’t know what that means. All I can tell you is that it was the most delicious and tender veal shank I ever had and I can heartily recommend it. For dessert I had their “Traditional Tiramisu,” which was beautifully presented, extraordinarily tasty and definitely packed a punch, the way that a good tiramisu should. When you go to St. Louis, and you can’t make up your mind which Italian restaurant on the Hill you should visit, try Lorenzo’s. You’ll be glad you did. For very reasonable prices, the place features serious food concocted by a talented chef with a very serious attitude. As Larry puts it, “You only get one chance to impress somebody, so you better be serious.”
Lorenzo’s Trattoria 1933 Edwards Street St. Louis, MO 63110 314-773-2223 www.lorenzostrattoria.com
42 AMICI / Spring 09
TRIVIA ITALIAN-AMERICAN STYLE 2
5 6 7 8 10
9 11 13
15 16 18
ACROSS 4 The Primo Viaggio Interno al Mondo was written by Italian adventurer Antonio Pigafetta. It detailed the exploits of what explorer’s expedition that circumnavigated the world? 6 Giogetto Giugiaro of Italdesign-Giugiaro Spa, has designed more of these than anyone in the 20th century. 9 Italian-American writer that many regard as America’s greatest forgotten literary genius. Ask the Dust is considered by critics to be on a par with The Great Gatsby. Other works include Full of Life, The Road to Los Angeles, and Wait Until Spring, Bandini. 11 Identify this role model for liberal Republicans and working mothers, who was once the highest ranking woman in Congress, representing Staten Island and parts of Brooklyn. 12 The Latin phrase, E pluribus unum, is used by the U.S. as a motto on its great seal. The phrase translates to Out of many, one. What Roman poet and author was this phrase taken from? 14 The architect for one of America’s greatest monuments had Italian roots. Frederic Auguste Bartholdi was born in France of Italian immigrant parents in 1834. He used the face of his mother as the model for what famous statue? 15 Luigi Faccuito, a legendary teacher and dancer on the Broadway stage and over 40 films including such Hollywood classic musicals as Singin in the Rain, An American in Paris, and White Christmas, is known as the father of American _______ dancing. 17 The country Italy defeated for the World Cup soccer title in 1982. 18 Born in Padua in 1508, he is considered the most influential architect in the history of architecture. 19 Jacopo Berengario Da Carpi was a 16th century Italian physician and anatomist who was the first to describe this mechanism of the human heart.
DOWN 1 This charismatic Italian hero is the only historical figure to appear on both American and Soviet postage stamps during the cold war period. 2 Mark P. Frissora, who makes his home in Lake Forest, Illinois, is chairman, president, and CEO of what global auto parts manufacturer that employs over 23,000 in 22 countries with over $3.5 billion in sales? 3 The nautical term starboard is derived from what uniquely designed Italian boat’s right, or steer-board, side? 5 A vaccine for this disease the first in the world, has been discovered by Italian research scientists. The major innovation in its development is found in the formation of a particular protein’s DNA information. 7 After serving as president and CEO of Eastman Kodak, Patricia Russo now heads an AT&T spin-off company she helped launch in 1996. 8 Child prodigy Maria Gaetana Agnesi, was born in Milan in 1718. She is considered the first woman in the western world to achieve a prominent reputation in what academic discipline? 9 He headed a group of Italian scientists that included Emilio Segre, which gained a U.S. Patent in July of 1940 (filed in Oct. 1935) that was for a process for the production of radioactive substances. 10 The tradition of St. Joseph’s Day began in this Italian region during the Middle Ages. 13 The family of new Supreme Court Justice Samuel Anthony Alito Jr. hails from this region of Italy. 16 Ruggedly handsome film and television actor’s breakthrough feature role came opposite Timothy Dalton’s James Bond in License to Kill in 1989. Younger audiences will remember him as an opera-singing villain in The Goonies from 1985. Solution on Page 48 Spring 09 / AMICI 43
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44 AMICI / Spring 09
Tony Romano By John Rizzo Writer Tony Romano has come out with his second book, If You Eat, You Never Die: Chicago Tales, published by Harper Perennial. Despite how the title sounds, it is not a cookbook, but a connected series of fictionalized vignettes, some quasi-autobiographical, that all depict various episodes about growing up in a Chicago Italian family. The strongest character fleshed out here is the mother who, like many we ourselves grew up with, is perhaps overly concerned with her son’s well being. Indeed, the book’s title comes from one of her homespun maxims. Late in the book, after her death, the narrator speaks of a certain dignity or self respect that accompanied the mother’s cancer – certainly a thought-provoking concept. Romano is a two-time winner of a PEN Syndicated Fiction Project award. He teaches English at Fremd High School in Palatine, Ill where he has worked for 28 years. He emigrated from Campania when only 11 months old, following his father, who got a job in the old Hart Schaffner Marx factory in downtown Chicago. The first editor of any stature who took an interest in his work was Fred Gardaphe, who also gave this writer his first job. Romano writes fiction because it is a “contemplative” exercise, and suits his personality. He is currently working on a sequel to his first published novel, When the World Was Young. Available at book stores around the Country @ $13.99 www.harpercollins.com
www.ajewelrymart.com Spring 09 / AMICI 45
Following the “absolutely superb”(Diane Haeger, author of The Secret Bride) Mademoiselle Boleyn, novelist Robin Maxwell delves into the life of Caterina-the adventurer, alchemist, and mother of Leonardo da Vinci. Caterina was fifteen years old in 1452 when she bore an illegitimate child in the tiny village of Vinci. His name was Leonardo, and he was destined to change the world forever. Caterina suffered much cruelty as an unmarried mother and had no recourse when her boy was taken away from her. But no one knew the secrets of her own childhood, nor could ever have imagined the dangerous and heretical scheme she would devise to protect and watch over her remarkable son. This is her story. Signora Da Vinci is published by NAL trade, a division of Penguin Group, Cost is $15.00, is available at all major book stores, as well as online at Amazon.com.
offers the very best from those pages: 63 pieces of fiction—memoir, poetry, story, and interview—that range widely in style and sentiment, tracing the arc of an immigrant culture's coming of age in America. What stories do Italian Americans tell about themselves? How do some of America's best writers deal with complicated questions of identity in their art?
Organized by provocative themes—Ancestors, The Sacred and the Profane, Love and Anger, Birth and Death, Art and Self—the selections document the evolution of Italian-American literature. From John Fante's "My Father's God," his classic story of religious subversion and memoirs by Dennis Barone and Jerre Mangione to a brace of poets, selected by Dana Gioia and Michael Palma, ranging from John Ciardi, Jay Parini, and Mary Jo Salter to George Guida and Rachel Guido de Vries. There are also stories alive with the Italian folk tradition (Tony Ardizzone and Louisa Ermelino), and others sleekly experimental (Mary Caponegro, Rosalind Palermo Stevenson). Other pieces—including an unforgettable interview with Camille Paglia—are Italian-American takes on the culture at large.
Wild Dreams Dreams Wild
of I talian
Now Available at Barnes & Noble and Amazon.com 46 AMICI / Spring 09
2008-09 national italian restaurant guide Email us for info on CHICAGO & SUBURBS, IL 3 Olives Restaurant / Twist Lounge 8318 W. Lawrence Ave. Norridge, IL 60706 Phone: (708) 452-1545 Amalfi Ristorante 298 Glen Ellyn Rd. Bloomingdale, IL 630-893-9222 Custom House 500 S. Dearborn St. Chicago, IL 60605 Phone: (312) 523-0200 La Piazza 410 Circle Ave., Forest Park, IL Phone: (708) 366-4010 Osteria via Stato 620 N. State St. Chicago, IL 60610 Phone: (312) 642-8450 Spacca Napoli Pizzeria 1769 W. Sunnyside Ave. Chicago, IL 60640 Phone: (773) 878-2420 Venuti’s Ristorante & Banquets 2251 W. Lake St. Addison, IL 60101 Phone: (630) 376-1500 Via Carducci 1419 W. Fullerton Chicago, IL 60614 773-665-1981
Vince’s Italian Rest. 4747 N. Harlem Ave. Chicago, IL 60634 Phone: (708) 867-7770 Cafe Zalute & Bar 9501 W. Devon Rosemont, Il Phone: (847) 685-0206 Victoria in the Park 1700 S. Elmhurst Rd. Mount Prospect, IL Phone:(708)456-1575
Stars Restaurant Review Rating! Milwaukee, WI 53202 Carini’s La Conca D’oro 3468 N. Oakland Ave. Milwaukee, WI 53211 Phone: (414) 963-9623
NEW JERSEY Tutto Pasta 200 Washington St. Hoboken, NJ Phone: (201) 792-102
Dolce` 241 Chestnut St. Philadelphia, PA 19106 Phone: (215) 238-9983 Mama Yolanda’s Italian Restaurant 746 S. 8TH St. Philadelphia, PA 19147 Phone: (215) 592-0195 Mio Sogno Italian Restaurant 2650 S. 15TH St. Philadelphia, PA 19145 Phone: (215) 467-3317
LAS VEGAS, NV
Bacco Ristorante & Bar 107 Salem St. Boston, MA 02113 Phone: (617) 624-0454
Gina’S Bistro 4226 S. Durango Dr. Las Vegas, NV 89147 Phone: (702) 341 1800
Fiorella’s 187 North St. Newton, MA 02460 Phone: (617) 969-9990
NEW YORK, NY
Favazza’s 5201 Southwest Ave. St. Louis, MO 63139 Phone: (314) 772-4454
Tarry Lodge 18 Mills St. Port Chester, NY 10573 Phone: (914) 939-3111
John Mineo’s Italian 13490 Clayton Rd. St. Louis, MO 63131 Phone: (314) 434-5244
Sorento’s Italian Gourmet 86 Peterborough St. Boston, Ma, 02215 Phone: (617) 424-7070
MILWAUKEE, WI Alioto’s 3041 N. Mayfair Rd. Milwaukee, WI 53222 Phone: (414) 476-6900 Buca di Beppo 1233 N. Van Buren St.
Carmine’s 2450 Broadway New York, NY 10024 Phone: (212) 362-2200 Massimo al Ponte Vecchio 206 Thompson St. New York, NY 10012 Phone: (212) 228-7701
PHILADELPHIA, PA Dante & Luigi’s 762 S. 10th St. Philadelphia, PA 19147 Phone: (215) 922-9501
ST. LOUIS, MO
Modesto Tapas Bar & Restaurant 5257 Shaw Ave. St. Louis, MO 63110 Phone: (314) 772-8272 Tony’s Restaurant 410 Market St. St. Louis, MO 63102 Phone: (314) 231-700
Lorenzo’s Trattoria 1933 edwards st. St. Louis, Mo 63110 314-773-2223
CONTACT US FOR RATES TO BE LISTED IN OUR NATIONAL RESTAURANT GUIDE Spring 09 / AMICI 47
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