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A P R I L / M AY 2 0 1 3 • V O L . 3 • N O . 2






See page 23 for details



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1 Bass Pro Mills Drive, Unit 110, VAUGHAN (905) 660-4550


17600 Yonge St, Unit EE12, NEWMARKET (905) 853-4551

FINCH CENTRE JEWELLERS 31 COLOSSUS DRIVE, UNIT 104 Woodbridge, ON. L4L 9K4 (905)-264-6669

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It’s the feeling Rosehaven designs into some of the most unique and desirable homes in Southern Ontario. Homes that are as unique as you are. So choose Rosehaven and every time you step through the front door you’ll say, I am happy, I am comfortable‌ I am home!

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New 20’ towns plus 25’ attached singles $380’s. s. Detached homes from the $380’ mes on 30’, 38’, $480’s. and 41’ lots from the $480’ s. /N-ISSISSAUGA2D NORTHOF"OVAIRD2D /N-ISSISSSAUGA2D NORTHOF"OVAIIRRD2D

Thorold - Gibson Heights

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New release of detached lots! 45’, 40’ & 36’ $300’s, singles lots from $300’ s, towns, towns, semis & attached attached tt from the $240’s. $240’s. 2ICHMOND3T INTERBERRY"LVD SOUTHOF(WY 2I 2 ICH HM MOND3T7IIN NTERBERRY"LVD SOUTHOF(W WYY

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Inventory available! Luxuryy stone, stucco & In nventory homes aav vailable! Luxur brick $460’s. brick detached designs on 45’ lots from the $460’ s. 4 models to tour! 'ARNER2D%2AYMOND2D EASTOF(WY ' ARNER2D%2AYMOND2D EASTOF(W WYY

Elegantly appointed detached homes on 56’ & 50’ lots from the $810’ s. $810’s. (WY0ARK(EIGHTS ( W WYY0ARK(EIGGHTS4R NORTHOF+ING2D R NORTHOF+IIN NG2D

COMING SOON to Stoney Creek - On The Ridge loca located Upper Centennial P Parkway arkway ated ted aatt Up and Mud St. W, QEW. Register Now Now aatt liv W, south of the QEW W.. Register F or directions, hour s, community infor mation, visit: R OSEHAVEN      NH HOMESCOMs  For hours, information, ROSEHAVENHOMESCOMs  Prices and specifications correct at press time O.E. Prices quoted are in $ thousands except for Kleinburg pricing. pricing. time.. E. & O.E.

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CONTENTS April / May 2013 On the Cover


Adam Lancia takes on the world


Adam Lancia e la sua sfida olimpica

DEPUTY EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Adam Zara MANAGING EDITORS Viviana Laperchia Rita Simonetta MONTREAL MANAGING EDITOR Gabriel Riel-Salvatore




Readers’ Comments 9 Publisher’s Note 10 Editorial 1 1-12

Puglia: Southern Comfort! 40 Flower Power 42

14 22



The return of la bicicletta 14

Italian Travel 101 44 Napoli 45

Toglietemi tutto, ma non il telefonino! 15

Venice in Vegas 46

Life & People

Arts & Culture


Cover: Adam Lancia takes on the world 16

Book Reviews 47 Italians and the Art of Concrete 48

Maria Campisi 18 Marilena Antonini 19

Musica Italiana 49



Frank Ferragine 21

E se le università italiane parlassero inglese? 50

TV personality and realtor Sandra Rinomato 22

Shakespeare’s love affair with il bel paese 52

La Mamma Italiana 24

Garibaldi e il suo amore per gli animali 54

Future Leader: Jennifer Corriero 25 One More Day 26

Community Events

Remembering Nick Discepola 29

Food & Wine Italian Beer 30


Various events 55-59



GTA Espresso Bars 31

Collezione Mario Righini 60

Vini di primavera 32

Made in Italy 62

Mother’s Day Menu 34

ART DIRECTION David Ferreira GRAPHIC DESIGN David Ferreira Manon Massé PHOTOGRAPHY Gregory Varano


CONTRIBUTORS Salvatore Difalco Sarah Mastroianni Stephanie Grella Daniela Di Stefano Letizia Tesi Daniela Di Croce Laura Nesci Diana Cina Alessia Sara Domanico Vanessa Santilli Liz Allemang Pal Di Iulio Dante Di Iulio Gaia Massai Jenny Galati Alessia Mocella Loretta Gatto-White Venus Gennaro Fabio Forlano Alain Raymond Alessio Galletti Francesca Spizzirri Giuseppe Continiello Sonia Benedetto

26 Duncan Street, Toronto, Ontario, Canada M5V 2B9 Tel.: 1.800.775.9428 I Fax: 416.438.3188 or by e-mail at : Legal deposit - National Library of Canada ISSN: 1916-6389

Printed in Canada Circulation Toronto edition: 100,000 Montreal edition: 50,000 Le opinioni espresse negli articoli firmati non rispecchiano necessariamente le idee della direzione e/o dell’editore che non vanno ritenuti legalmente responsabili del loro contenuto e della loro veridicità. Les opinions exprimées dans les articles signés ne sont pas nécessairement celles de la direction et/ou de l’éditeur et ils ne peuvent pas être tenus légalement responsables de leur contenu et de leur véridicité. The opinions expressed in this magazine and/or its signed articles are those of their authors and do not necessarily reflect the opinion of its administration or publisher and cannot be held legally responsible thereof.

Distributed as addressed mail by

Lifestyle Living Italian Style 36 Publications Mail Agreement #40981004

Fashion: Suit up 38



Subscribe @

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Joseph J. Rizzotto B.A.(Hons), M.A., LL.B., LL.M.

has many years of experience dealing with insurance companies and claims. “It is important to hire someone that will carefully review and research each case individually in order that the appropriate action is taken quickly and is effective. Knowledge is key.” Q: I was at the grocery store and slipped on spilled liquid that was not cleaned up. What are my rights? The liquid obviously should not have been on the floor. The store has an obligation to keep its premises safe and avoid any situation of danger. It should have cleaned the floor and posted some type of warning sign to its customers. It is therefore negligent or at fault. As your lawyers, we will help you prove that the store is at fault. As a result, the store or its insurance company is responsible to compensate you for what medical treatment you need, for your loss of enjoyment, your pain and suffering, your out of pocket expenses and loss of earnings.

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Q: As I reached for the lumber the entire stack fell on my head. Do I have any recourse? The lumber was clearly improperly stacked and not secured. Therefore, the store created a dangerous situation. This resulted in you sustaining significant bodily injuries. The store will suggest that you caused or contributed to the lumber striking you by you moving the lumber. With our advice and assistance we will prove the store created this situation and was negligent. Once this is accomplished, we will obtain compensation for you from the store or its insurer for your losses and your pain and suffering.

Q: I was walking on the sidewalk and tripped on a crack in the cement. Can I pursue the City for compensation? The crack in the sidewalk or the unevenness in the sidewalk has to be significant enough for you to seek relief from the City or its insurer. A very small crack or an uneven sidewalk barely visible to the naked eye will not result in any relief for you. Municipalities are traditionally tough adversaries. You have to prove everything to them to be successful in seeking compensation. As your lawyers we will guide you towards proving that the City was negligent and that you deserve compensation for your pain and suffering and losses.

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Mi piace molto la vostra rivista. Sono in Canada dal 1958. Avevo 14 anni quando sono venuto, e purtroppo per parecchie ragione, non sono piu ritornata in Italia. Spero di vincere il viaggio tranne il vostro concorso. Adesso sto conoscendo l’Italia tramite la vostra rivista. Spero che in apresso avrete piu sulla Calabria, specialmente su Cosenza. Gina Galloro, Brampton I wish to commend the staff at Panoram Italia for putting forth a sleek, informative and well-researched publication which captures not only the essence and cultural diversity of our beautiful native Italy, but at the same time helps bring Italian-Canadians together as a community who can be proud of its hard work and endless accomplishments which has helped shape the vast landscape of our adoptive country – Canada. I look forward to receiving many more future issues and wish all of you continued success for your efforts. Gabriella Palucci, Montreal Congratulations to the entire team at Panoram Italia. It is by far the most appealing magazine to read and/or look through. I am not a "reader" of any magazine and basically only read the Gazette, but every time I receive my copy of Panoram I have to go through it all right away, and I am never disappointed. Gary Da Ponte, Montreal I have been a high school and college teacher for many years. I am proud of my Italian roots, and I am now proud of what some Italians have been able to produce in this superb magazine called Panoram Italia. I have been praising it, and I have been sharing it for months, and will continue to do so any opportunity I get. I hope that it will continue to represent us Italians in Canada for many years to come. May you experience increased success. Michael Caputo, Toronto RE: L’inutilita degli eletti all’estero, Vol. 3 No. 1 Sono rimasto piacevolmente sorpreso, quando ho letto il Suo editoriale nel giornale PanoramItalia, di vedere che si sono ancora persone che la pensano come me. Il suo scritto è azzeccato in tutti gli argomenti. Peccato che il Suo editoriale non venga pubblicato su tutti i giornali italiani. Se i nostri connazionali sapessero quanto devono sborsare per i 18 rappresentanti all'estero, sarebbero i primi a chiedere un referendum per domandare l'abolizione della legge Tremaglia. Quando vado in Italia, mi rendo

conto che diversi Italiani non sono nemmeno al corrente che esiste il voto all'estero, figuriamoci se ne conoscono i costi. Se poi pensiamo ai votanti all'estero, è un'altra delusione: la maggior parte non ha la minima idea di cosa succede nel paese o di cosa fanno i politici. Si lasciano convincere dal compare o dalla commare perché non ne capiscono nulla. Quando siamo emigrati, 50-60-70 anni fa, ce la siamo cavata senza saper parlare, leggere o scrivere la lingua locale, senza l'aiuto di nessuno. Quei signori che ora vogliono rappresentarci non erano nemmeno nati ed ora vogliono fare così tanto per noi... Questa roba mi lascia qualche dubbio. Mica lo faranno forse per interessi propri? Bruno Negrello, Montreal RE: L’inutilita degli eletti all’estero, Vol. 3 No. 1 Congratulazioni per una rivista molto ben impostata con articoli interessanti. L’editoriale di Filippo Salvatore da’ ancora piu’ credito a Panorama come rivista imparziale e inteligente. Condivido fortemente l’idea di abolire le elezioni all’estero ed eliminare sprego che l’Italia dovrebbe eliminare. Umberto Pascali, Toronto



RE: Cooking up a Recipe for Love, Vol. 3 No. 1 All photos by Venus Gennaro

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Ed i t o r i a l

La Rivoluzione Tranquilla in Italia By Filippo Salvatore Nascita della Terza Repubblica Il 25 febbraio 2013 i cittadini italiani hanno riconquistato le istituzioni. L’Italia dei tecnici alla Mario Monti è stata bocciata. Per interpretare in modo oggettivo il risultato elettorale del 2013 in Italia, occorre avere la chiaroveggenza che il discrimine tradizionale ideologico destra/sinistra è un paradigma obsoleto. Il Movimento 5 Stelle con a capo l’ex comico Beppe Grillo ha preso voti sia della destra che della sinistra ed è diventato il primo partito politico italiano. Una vera rivoluzione pacifica. Perché è successo questo? Perché il M5S propone una visione nuova di come si fa politica, che corrisponde ai bisogni del 21° secolo, ossia il ritorno al comizio in piazza e all’uso della rete telematica, del web che permette la transmission/ricezione diretta del messaggio politico sullo schermo del computer. La Rete permette la partecipazione diretta, orizzontale, al dibattito politico, mentre la televisione e i giornali usano una logica verticistica. Il risultato emerso dalle elezioni dimostra che il vero dibattito sociale si farà tra due visioni alternative del rapporto che deve intercorrere tra l'economia, e il lavoro che ne deriva, e l'ambiente. Il rapporto armonico politica/cittadino/territorio a livello locale e globale è la questione da capire e a partire dalla quale vanno programmate le concezioni di sviluppo o di difesa degli equilibri ecologici. Il sistema economico e bancario obbedisce ancora a una visione del progresso lineare, cumulativo, esponenziale del progresso. Il quale, si capirà sempre di più in un pianeta che non ha più frontiere fisiche da conquistare, è ciclico. Il modello 'populista' di Beppe Grillo anticipa il dibattito epocale che diventerà sempre più evidente nei prossimi decenni in Italia, nel resto dell’Europa e in tutti i paesi del cosiddetto Primo Mondo. Da homo faber a homo humilis. Ogni modifica sociale profonda si basa sempre su una necessità di resurrezione morale. E l'italia dei corrotti e della casta e dei privilegiati della Seconda Repubblica è innegabilmente, per la maggioranza degli Italiani, arrivata al capolinea. Non sarà più possibile governare il Paese come si è fatto dal 1994-2012. È iniziata quella che mi piace chiamare una “rivoluzione tranquilla”, che porterà l'Italia a essere un paese più verde, più giusto, più etico, più bello. Ne sono due esempi: la città di Parma e la regione Sicilia, amministrate da una coalizione di sinistra e M5S. In entrambi i casi il modo nuovo di governare sta cambiando profondamente la realtà. Ambientalismo, onestà ed efficienza amministrativa: ecco i tre cardini della “rivoluzione tranquilla”.

La crescita, con la coscienza del limite, evita gli sprechi e fa il massimo con il minimo di materie prime, di risorse naturali o di energia: ecco il modello sociale emergente. Lo sviluppo si dovrà fare in armonia con gli ecosistemi e vedere nella sostenibilità la filosofia da sposare teoricamente e realizzare concretamente. Siamo agli albori di una vera novità economica del presente secolo. In questa nuova economia l’uomo oltre che faber è anche humilis, rispetta cioè l’ambiente che lo fa vivere. Beppe Grillo è semplicemente la persona che ha dato, nel 2013, voce ad un'esigenza profondamente sentita dal popolo italiano: basta con la vecchia politica e con il progresso tradizionale - meno cemento, più verde, meno sprechi, più conservazione, meno inquinamento, più alberi. Sogno bucolico irrealizzabile? No, sano buon senso. Berlusconi, Hefner e il Papa Emerito Quello che un terzo dell'elettorato italiano non è riuscito, o non ha interesse, a capire è quanto impresentabile è Silvio Berlusconi, il cavaliere, all’estero. Il suo nome è sinonimo di barzellette ridanciane e la sua demagogica loquela è prova, in un paese come il Canada, della volubilità del carattere collettivo degli Italiani. Silvio Berlusconi, quasi ottantenne, ha due scelte. O essere il fratello gemello di Hugh Hefner, il fondatore di Playboy, che si fidanza con una ventenne o imitare la saggezza di Joseph Ratzinger, il papa emerito Benedetto XVI che per modestia rinuncia al soglio. Trapianto, viagra, botox, non bastano più. Ma non si rende conto che la Natura ha le sue leggi inesorabili che vanno accettate? Nessuno è indispensabile, nemmeno, e sopratutto, lui. Ma questo presuppone avere la coscienza del limite e il sentimento del contrario, come avrebbe detto Luigi Pirandello, la vera forma di saggezza. Cosa che ovviamente gli manca e si aggrappa, malgrado i tanti processi in corso contro di lui, al potere e coltiva la sua illusione di onnipotenza, solleticata da un codazzo di venali adulatori. "Siamo all'ultimo attacco alla mia libertà personale. C'è un'associazione a delinquere dentro la magistratura. Vogliono farmi fare la fine di Bettino Craxi… La magistratura è peggiore della mafia", dixit Silvio Berlusconi. I colpi di coda, come la manifestazione del 23 marzo a Roma, sono sempre i più velenosi e pericolosi perché possono sfociare nella violenza. Sia chiara una verità semplice: nella logica sociale è normale che ci sia in un grande paese come l'Italia una parte dell'elettorato che sposa una visione conservatrice. L'esistenza quindi di una destra democratica è non solo auspicabile, è necessaria. Non è affatto necessaria, invece, la difesa ad oltranza da parte dei dirigenti dell'attuale destra

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Ed i t o r i a l


dopo le elezioni del 25 febbraio 2013 italiana di un personaggio impresentabile a livello internazionale e moralmente losco come Silvio Berlusconi: la sua palla di piombo al piede. La nuova Italia: laboratorio sociale d’Europa Quando crolla un sistema di potere, come sta avvenendo per il Berlusconismo in Italia, o lo strapotere dei “corvi” dello IOR della Curia in Vaticano, tutti i puntelli che gli hanno permesso di esistere, vanno, per logica ed etica, spazzati via. Lo ha capito benessimo il vescovo italo-argentino Jorge Mario Bertoglio, eletto come vicario di Cristo con il nome di Francesco. In pochi giorni le sue dichiarazioni e il suo comportamento hanno trasformato il protocollo centenario della Curia e ridato vigore al messaggio di povertà, di fratellanza e di amore di Cristo. L’Italia della casta, dei corrotti e dei privilegi, sta finendo per fortuna. Riuscirà il Partito Democratico di Bersani ad aderire ad un modello non statalista di gestione del potere ed a sposare la vocazione verde come modello di sviluppo economico? Vedremo. L'Italia potrà diventare il laboratorio per un Europa diversa, quella delle comunità che si aggregano in unioni di comuni per lo sviluppo sostenibile del territorio. Il che presuppone un'organizzazione alternativa a quella vigente dell'amministrazione pubblica. Una Banca d'Italia che obbliga il sistema bancario nazionale a investire nella piccola e media impresa e sa reagire alle storture economiche volutamente create dagli speculatori internazionali, aiutata dalla Banca Centrale Europea. Se prevale l'amore della Patria, la solidarietà verso i più deboli, il rispetto del proprio territorio e il suo sviluppo economico sostenibile, l'estromissione dalle leve di potere degli incompetenti, dei corrotti e dei raccomandati, se si dà spazio alla risorsa abbondantissima di cui dispone, l'Intelligenza e la creatività del suo popolo, l'Italia del 2013 non ha nulla da temere. Se le forze politiche presenti al Senato e in Parlamento si ispireranno a principi come quelli indicati, l'Italia non solo è governabile, ma ridiventerà la locomotiva economica d'Europa. Lo sviluppo e la crescita dell'Italia deve basarsi su una rigenerazione morale. Auguriamoci che questo avvenga. Ricordati, Madre Italia, di essere il Bel Paese, di essere stata grande ed hai tutte le carte per ridiventarlo! Giocatele bene.

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Community Development Faith, Hope and Charity By Pal Di Iulio

In the early 1970s, when I was a skinny young man out of university, the Federation of Italian Canadian Clubs and Associations (FACI) and the Italian Canadian Benevolent Corporation (now Villa Charities) were the leading new influences in the ItalianCanadian community in Toronto. I was active in cultural endeavours in high school and university and wanted to be involved as a volunteer, never actually intending community work as my career. became inspired by many good people at that time. I got to know Elio Madonia and Tony Fusco, whose intense passion for their work was invigorating, and I became familiar with the grace of my predecessor and mentor Paul Ariemma. When we started, one of the most difficult tasks was finding people with enough stamina, faith, hope and charity who could inspire and lead the many disparate parts of the community to collectively and zealously achieve the dream of building a casa di riposo for seniors of Italian origin. We were lucky enough to find exceptional volunteer leaders with real drive and vision, and that was only the beginning. Since then, hundreds of volunteer governors have sat on the various boards within the Villa Charities family of organizations with an interest in giving back to their community — from the initial self-made men with an expertise in construction and business to the current second and third-generation professionals, both male and female. For those who are truly involved, the Villa Charities family, and the community, become an integral part of who they are. I can attest to that as a verity. Many of the people from the 1970s, and/or their children, are still involved in Villa Charities today. What excited me at the beginning was the knowledge that we were going to embark on projects that were much larger than any individual. There were historic, sociological and demographic implications that would result in leaving this corner of the world a little better than we found it. My job today, as CEO of Villa Charities, is challenging and varied. On any given day I have the pleasure, responsibility — and sometimes frustration – of dealing with many people and issues: from talking with a tenant concerned about a drain problem, to an artist interested in our gallery, to the Prime Minister’s office. Now, 30 years later, I have had the privilege of being personally involved in eight major projects and their administrative operations (Villa Colombo, Columbus Centre and the Joseph D. Carrier Art Gallery, Caboto Terrace, Casa Del Zotto, VITA Community Living


Services/Mens Sana Families for Mental Health, Villa Colombo Vaughan, and Casa Abruzzo). It is somehow easier to build structures than it is to give them ongoing life; more exciting — albeit sometimes forbidding — to create and be the first at whatever you're doing. It is difficult to maintain the same level of passion and excitement administrating a project, but it is equally important to appropriately maintain the dreams fulfilled on behalf of the community. Third generation Italian-Canadians tend to see their immigration history in a different way from their predecessors, and have different expectations. I'm very aware that my kids take many things, like their education, for granted, and that's good: they have different challenges. The dreams of the ‘60s, ‘70s and ‘80s have been put into action. Now it is time to renew, regenerate and renovate. We need to make room and involve younger people in protecting our many community assets and in realizing their own dreams for 2030 and beyond. I continue to want to put my best foot forward, fully knowing and aware that from the start my best foot forward somehow represented the Italian-Canadian community. I am grateful and thankful to the thousands of generous people on whose coattails I have ridden. It is satisfying to know that we provide culturally sensitive services for thousands of people and take care of millions of dollars in community assets. I have been fortunate to be involved in community development. My parents really didn’t understand what I was doing but they had faith in me. I also have to thank my wife, in-laws, and family, for the countless hours they spent without me while I was in meetings for Villa Charities. I have always been an interpreter: being the Canadese to my parents, and the ‘Italian’ everywhere else I went. I've always felt that I had to interpret Canada for my parents and paesani, and my parents and paesani to the rest of Canada. Similarly I have had the honour of doing the same thing with Villa Charities.

See page 27 for more information on the Villa Charities Foundation and how to donate. Vedi pagina 28 per maggiori informazioni sulla Villa Charities Foundation e su come effetuare una donazione.

Italo, Ester & Eligio Paris

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Soci ety


The return of

la bicicletta

Italians abandoning their beloved cars for two wheels

By Salvatore Difalco

In a trend that shows no signs of waning, Italians are mounting their biciclette and tinkling their campanelle in record numbers. Alfa-Romeo, Fiat and Ferrari et al are currently taking a backseat to Bianchi, Bottecchia and Colnago — no small thing in a country boasting one of the highest car ownership rates in the world, and some of the most fanatical car enthusiasts. ccording to The Christian Science Monitor, last year 1.75 million bikes were sold in Italy, compared to 1.748 million motor vehicles, a ratio unheard of since World War II. And although it may represent the vanguard of an Italian “green” revolution and a radical switch in the collective consciousness, the real reasons for the bicycles resurgence are more elemental. Austerity cuts, chronic unemployment, rising living costs, and sky-rocketing fuel prices have blunted the purchase of new cars to levels unseen since the 1970s. Italians are hanging on to older cars for longer periods of time and driving them less, and in place of second cars, families are buying new bicycles and dusting off old ones. With the highest gasoline prices in Europe and prohibitive maintenance costs (approximately €7,000 a year), car ownership, once a symbol of Italian economic prosperity and style, has become untenable for many cash-strapped Italian families. Needless to say, the Italian automobile industry finds itself in a dire funk, suffering its worst crisis in decades; Sergio Marchionne, the head of Fiat, recently summarized the state of things: “The European car market is a disaster.” The Italian government may also be wincing at the loss of abundant gasoline tax revenues. But with carbon saturation and peak oil on the horizon, both the auto industry and government can forget about car sales and gasoline tax revenues ever reclaiming past heights. This problem may be here to stay. Antonio Della Venezia, president of the Federazione Italiana Amici della Bicicletta, told La Repubblica newspaper, “It is an opportunity to change lifestyle.” Regardless of how novel it is that Italians are abandoning, or at least “resting,” their cars, Italy does have a longstanding history with the bicycle (da Vinci sketched examples of it as far back as 1493). The passion and skill of Italian bicycle-makers and road racers is legendary — a complex chronicle of working class heroes, political upheaval and technological development. Illustrious names like Costante Girardengo, Fausto Coppi, and Gino Bartali stud the Italian cycling pantheon. In a sense Italians are not


only rediscovering the joys and convenience of bicycle travel, as well as the savings, but they’re also tapping into a rich pre-existing cultural treasury. At least one automaker has taken small measures: Maserati has lent its name to bicycles (produced under license by Milani). According to Milani spokesperson Celeste Milani, “Maserati is interested in producing bicycles not only as mediums of travel, but also as objects to possess.” Will Ferrari and Lamborghini follow suit? With 10 million Italians tooling around on bicycles, and many more joining the spoked brigades, they’d be wise to ride the tide. And while Denmark, the Netherlands and other northern European nations have long been bicycle-friendly, the Italian move may mark a watershed moment in European bicycle use on the whole. Automobile ownership, affordability and ecofriendliness: issues that have made automobiles a luxury fewer and fewer Italians can afford, plague the rest of Europe, if not the world. As Celeste Milani notes, “The bicycle market in general, and particularly the higher end, is expanding not just in Italy but worldwide.” Meanwhile, the Italian government, ever inventive, is trying to imagine ways to tax this eco-friendly, car-averse new wave of citizen. After all, coffers will suffer if Italians take this thing too far: they’re starting to look as fit as their northern neighbours, and are even experiencing, God-forbid, green thoughts. That bicycles do not pollute the environment is another incontrovertible upside that agrees with many Italians but impresses few politicians. The biggest downside of bicycling may not be the foreseeable escalation of bicycle thefts throughout Italy, since it stands to reason that with more bicycles in giro more thefts are inevitable, but the uncanny Italian penchant for cell phones. According to a recent poll, 90 out of 100 Italians regularly use a cell phone, often while riding bicycles, a dangerous trend that will yield its share of worrisome statistics in the future.



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Toglietemi tutto, ma non il telefonino! Gli Italiani e la mania per i telefoni cellulari Alessio Galletti

“Pronto? No, non mi disturba affatto, mi dica!”. A Carlo Verdone, che per anni ha fustigato le manie degli Italiani, è bastata una frase per ironizzare sugli eccessi legati a quella scatoletta che a metà degli anni Novanta era ancora un misterioso oggetto del desiderio. aniero Cotti Borroni, personaggio del film “Viaggi di nozze”, risponde al telefono mentre va all’altare per pronunciare il fatidico sì, durante la prima notte di nozze e sulla tomba della prima moglie. Esagerazioni? C’è ovviamente da sperarlo. Senza dubbio, però, il cellulare rappresenta un’esigenza irrinunciabile per ogni italiano, con pochissime eccezioni. Tanto che nel 2011 in Italia, paese di 60 milioni di abitanti, si sono registrati ben 93 milioni di numeri di telefono. In altre parole, un numero e mezzo a testa, che se paragonato ai 78 numeri ogni 100 canadesi, fa capire quale sia la capillarità del fenomeno. Neppure la crisi economica sembra essere riuscita a placare l’entusiasmo e la mania per il telefonino, che da quando è diventato “intelligente”, è ancora più irresistibile e ha attirato nella sua rete, con giochi e app, grandi e piccini. Con suonerie sempre più elaborate, che come novelle sirene continuano a catturare l’attenzione dei tanti Ulisse italiani, il telefonino ha smesso di essere qualcosa di misterioso, ma non per questo meno desiderato da un popolo ormai fatto di santi, poeti e di oratori. Senza contare, ovviamente, le orde di adolescenti, e non solo, capaci di “smessaggiare” alla velocità della luce, superando di gran lunga le 45 parole al minuto delle più brave dattilografe. E nonostante sia già stata documentata un’allergia da cellulare (in realtà solo a quelli che contengono nichel), gli Italiani sembrano esserne del tutto immuni: uomini, donne, anziani e bambini sono sempre attaccati al telefonino, con l’unica eccezione della fascia di età che va da zero ai cinque anni… per loro, i veri nativi


Viaggi di nozze

digitali, c’è il cellulare giocattolo in attesa di quello vero. C’è da dire che la differenza nelle tariffe rende la prospettiva di “alzare il telefono” e chiamare certamente meno difficile che in Canada, dove lo stesso tipo di contratto può costare anche il doppio, ma a giudicare dal numero di compagnie in attività e dal fatto che una di queste si possa permettere da anni di sponsorizzare il campionato di Serie A in Italia, gli affari non devono andare comunque male. Non è, però, solo una questione di soldi. Il cellulare per gli Italiani è soprattutto uno status symbol: lo devi avere e lo devi avere “figo”. Basta pensare alle campagne pubblicitarie delle compagnie telefoniche che negli anni hanno cercato di associare il loro marchio al volto delle modelle più belle e più pagate. La prima fu Megan Gale, diventata poi un’icona di Vodafone, con uno spot che ha fatto epoca nella televisione italiana. Chi non si ricorda la procacissima modella australiana, che arrivava in macchina a una frontiera tutta sudata nonostante un miniabito? Per capire che si trattava della pubblicità di un telefonino bisognava aspettare la fine, quando al posto delle impronte digitali la modella lasciava i simboli di una carta ricaricabile. Era il 1999. Da allora le compagnie telefoniche hanno fatto a gara per accaparrarsi il volto della modella più in voga o quello del comico o del calciatore più amato, da Totti a Belen, da Adriana Lima a Neri Marcorè — che ha girato gli ultimi spot nei panni di Casanova. Perché gli Italiani con un telefonino vogliono sognare “senza confini”, come dice la pubblicità, dalla bella ragazza all’infallibile seduttore.

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Cover Story

Adam Lancia takes on the

world By Vanessa Santilli

At only 33 years old, Paralympian Adam Lancia has travelled the world. Russia, Japan and Argentina are just a few of the many countries in this wheelchair basketball star's travel log. But he's not done yet. The two-time Paralympic gold medallist has his sights set on Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, for the next Paralympic Games in 2016. etting up on the podium one last time would be nice,” says Lancia. He won gold alongside his teammates on Team Canada at the London 2012 Paralympic Games last summer. His trip to the Paralympics in Athens also resulted in gold, followed by silver in Beijing. Born without feet, ankles, his ACL and tibia, Lancia calls being born with a disability a blessing. "For everything I've been able to do as a result, I wouldn't trade it for the world. Not even for a second ... And all the people that I've met and friends that I've made — there's no substitute for that." Born in Scarborough, Lancia has put down roots in Halifax to be closer to his fiancé, Jamey Jewells, a wheelchair basketball player for the Canadian women's national team. With a degree in kinesiology from the University of Illinois — famed for their wheelchair basketball team — and a diploma in prosthetics and orthotics from George Brown College in Toronto, Lancia currently works as a prosthetics technician at the Nova Scotia Research Centre. Growing up, the use of prosthetics played no small part in his life, allowing him to take part in sports such as soccer and fast-pitch baseball, he says. When Lancia was five years old, his femur (thigh bone) was essentially cut in half and then reset to even out his shin joints. The rehab they prescribed was playing as many sports as he could. “I played on my high school able-bodied basketball team as well,” he says. “I'm no stranger to getting around and doing things on my feet, so to say.” When people ask Lancia about his disability, they're quick to empathize.”But for me, that's how I grew up,” he says. “That's what I know.” Gaetano Lancia, Adam's father, immigrated to Canada from Sora, Lazio, with his family at the age of 11. “We're very proud of him,” says Gaetano, who can easily list off all the teams and leagues his son has ever played for. “One year he played for Denver,


Photographer: Aaron McKenzie Fraser

Colorado,” he says. “That year, I took him to the airport every Friday night so he could go play games in the U.S.” He was fitted with prosthetics when he was less than a year old, says the elder Lancia. “Right away, he crawled to a chair to help himself up and he stood up,” he says. “And he's been on the move ever since.” From his father's Italian roots, Lancia has developed a love for cooking. He fondly recalls his nonna and zia making tomato sauce at home. “They had this huge pot that covered all four elements on the stove,” he says. Having learned a lot from his Zia Lucy, he tried to emulate her radicchio and romaine salad one day. He couldn't quite put his finger on it, but he knew something important was missing. He broke down and called her, discovering the missing ingredient: salt. “I tried it right after talking to her and lo and behold I had discovered the secret," he says with a laugh. "It's all in the details.” For mother Elizabeth and sister Valerie, the trip to watch Adam bring home gold at the Summer Paralympics in London was unforgettable. They call it the trip of a lifetime. “It was absolutely fabulous," says Elizabeth. "He couldn't stop saying thank you for being here often enough. And a big, big smile would cross his face every time he saw us.” As the countdown to Rio continues, the most challenging part of his journey to date — finding motivation to train when it's easier to relax — is not that different than any other athlete, he says. To counter this, he keeps his competition in mind: particularly the country Team Canada has faced off against in the last three gold medal games at the Paralympics. “One thing that drives me is the fact that I know there are Australians out there training.” But winning gold has been well worth all the hours of rigorous preparation. “It's the flat-out most amazing feeling I've had so far in my life.”

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Cover Story


Adam Lancia e la sua sfida olimpica A soli 33 anni, l’atleta paralimpico Adam Lancia ha fatto il giro del mondo. Russia, Giappone e Argentina sono solo alcune delle tante nazioni in cui è stata la star del basket in sedia a rotelle. E non ha ancora finito. Il due volte medaglia d’oro alle paralimpiadi ha già puntato la prossima meta: Rio de Janeiro, Brasile, per i prossimi Giochi Paralimpici nel 2016. alire sul podio un’ultima volta sarebbe bello” – dice Lancia, che con i suoi compagni del Team Canada ha vinto la medaglia d’oro ai Giochi Paralimpici di Londra nell’estate del 2012. Dopo aver conquistato un argento a Beijing, anche la sua avventura alle Paralimpiadi di Atene era terminata con un oro. Nato senza i piedi, le caviglie, i legamenti crociati anteriori e le tibie, Adam confessa che essere nato con una disabilità è stata una benedizione. “Per tutto quello che sono stato capace di fare, non cambierei niente. Neanche per un secondo. Le persone che ho incontrato e gli amici che ho trovato sono insostituibili”. Nato a Scarborough, Adam adesso vive ad Halifax per stare vicino alla sua fidanzata, Jamey Jewells, una giocatrice di basket in sedia a rotelle che fa parte della squadra nazionale femminile del Canada. Dopo un laurea in Kinesiology conseguita all’Università dell’Illinois — famosa per la sua squadra di basket in sedia a rotelle — e un diploma in Prosthetics e Orthotics al George Brown College di Toronto, Adam ha ottenuto un lavoro come tecnico delle protesi nel Nova Scotia Research Centre. Durante la crescita, l’utilizzo delle protesi è stata una parte importante della sua vita, tanto da permettergli di praticare sport come il calcio o il baseball. Quando le persone fanno delle domande ad Adam sulla sua disabilità, si crea subito empatia. “Sono cresciuto così. Questo è quello che conosco, quello che sono”. Gaetano Lancia, il papà di Adam, è immigrato in Canada con la sua famiglia quando aveva 11 anni. Erano partiti da Sora, nel Lazio. “Noi siamo davvero orgogliosi di lui” — dice Gaetano, che ricorda perfettamente tutte le squadre e le categorie in cui il figlio ha giocato. “Un anno ha giocato per Denver, in Colorado. Quella stagione lo portavo tutti i venerdì sera all’aeroporto per poter andare a giocare negli Stati Uniti”. Era abitutato alle protesi fin da quando aveva un anno, ricorda papà Gaetano. “Da piccolo camminava a quattro zampe fino a raggiungere una sedia per trovare appoggio e alzarzi in piedi. E’ stato sempre in movimento, fin dai primi anni”. Attraverso le origini italiane del padre, Adam ha sviluppato l’amore per la cucina. Ricorda con affetto la nonna e la zia mentre, in casa, facevano la salsa di pomodoro. “Avevano una pentola così grande che copriva tutti e quattro i fornelli”. Avendo imparato molto dalla Zia Lucy, un giorno Adam ha provato a imitare la sua insalata di radicchio e lattuga romana. Sapeva che non sarebbe stata identica, ma sentiva che mancava qualcosa. Poi ha ceduto e l’ha chiamata, mancava un ingrediente: il sale. “Ho riprovato subito dopo aver parlato con lei e finalmente ho scoperto il vero segreto! — dice ridendo — Sta sempre nei dettagli”. Per mamma Elizabeth e Valerie, la sorella, il viaggio che ha visto Adam tonare a casa con la medaglia d’oro delle Paralimpiadi di Londra è stato indimenticabile. Loro lo chiamano ‘il viaggio di una vita’. “E’ stato assolutamente favoloso – dice Elizabeth – Adam non smetteva di ringraziaci per essere lì con lui. Faceva un grande, grandissimo sorriso ogni volta che ci vedeva”. Il conto alla rovescia per Rio è iniziato e la sfida più grande della sua preparazione, trovare motivazioni per l’allenamento quando sarebbe facile rilassarsi, non è diversa dagli altri atleti. Ma Adam ha sempre in mente la gara: pensa e ripensa a quelle ultime tre finali per la medaglia d’oro alle Paralimpiadi del Team Canada. “La cosa che più mi stimola è sapere che gli Australiani sono là fuori che si allenano”. E poi, vincere l’oro è stato così bello che vale la pena fare dei sacrifici. “Solo così potrò riprovare l’emozione più bella che ho avuto finora nella mia vita, vincere la medaglia d’oro”.


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Maria Campisi Chi si diverte impara By Sarah Mastroianni

For Italian teacher Maria Campisi, fun and learning go hand in hand. Throw in a good dose of passion, and you’ve got her recipe for the perfect class. For 15 years Campisi has been energizing the Continuing Education Italian classroom at Richview Collegiate Institute in Toronto, always keeping her students guessing and enthusiastic about what they’ll learn next. “I never tell them what I have planned for the next week,” she laughs. Students of hers can learn to expect anything — Italian music, proverbs, traditions, history, geography, and of course, food, all have their place in Campisi’s classroom. her husband and some of the staff at her youngest daughter’s Italian pre-school, she hesitantly accepted a position teaching a night school Italian course. She hasn’t looked back since. Between helping her husband with his business and teaching Italian, Campisi has no shortage of things to do with her days, yet she still finds the time to volunteer in the community. Whether it be spending time with residents at the Villa Colombo, helping to run errands for her elderly neighbours or taking them to an event in the Italian community, Campisi can always be found helping others. “We’re like a family,” she says of her friends and neighbours in Toronto’s Italian community, “why wouldn’t I take the time to help them?” “Italians should be proud of this Italian,” writes former student Dora Charalambous. “She’s what makes us love Italian traditions, history, language, art and especially food. Maria is an astounding teacher and we applaud her for all her efforts.” Campisi’s enthusiasm for teaching, passion for Italian language and culture, and her natural inclination towards helping others are only a few of the many qualities that endear her to her students and make her such a valued member of the community.

lthough many of her students are of Italian heritage, Campisi’s classes attract learners of all ages and cultural backgrounds. “You’re never too old to learn a new language,” Campisi smiles as she recalls her oldest student, a 90-year-old woman who wished to re-connect with the language of her parents. Campisi also stresses how important it is for Italian-Canadians of all generations to stay in touch with their roots and to keep Italian traditions alive. “Your roots are who you are,” she says with conviction. A native of Gesualdo (Avellino), Italy who immigrated to Canada in the early 1950s, Campisi wishes she had had the opportunity to learn Italian at school. Instead, she got her start learning Italian from her parents and by reading the letters her nonna sent from Italy. Through the years, Campisi’s passion for Italian language and culture and her belief in their importance never wavered. She ensured that her three daughters learned Italian at school and delighted in volunteering in their classes, all the while actively improving her Italian skills. “I learned Italian for me,” she says. Though she enjoyed volunteering in her daughters’ classes, Campisi never set out to be a teacher — her marriage, family and job at CIBC kept her busy enough. Encouraged by


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Marilena Antonini A learner for life By Liz Allemang

On weekends, supposedly days of rest, Marilena Antonini may go for a walk, to aquafit or out with friends, or be wrapping up negotiations with Bell Canada technicians, following a weekend babysitting her two granddaughters, aged 5 and 2, which included teaching the eldest, who is not yet able to read, six words by memory to recite to her impressed mom upon pick up. nd then there’s the minestrone and the chicken parmigiana she made for her daughter, who is balancing raising kids with pursuing a teaching degree, to reheat throughout the week because Antonini is particularly understanding of such a demanding schedule. Sympathetic because she did the exact same thing when she was a young mom, only she did it while working full-time, learning English and adjusting to life as a newlywed and, moreover, adjusting to a new life in Canada when she was just 21 years old. Maybe this is why she seems so relaxed now: life is still demanding, but she’s used to that. Having sent the kids home with their mum, she might get a bit of work done. “I know it is good to take a break. I have to remind myself of that. But what I get done in one, uninterrupted hour at home would take six at work,” she says. “Weekends are when I play catch up.” During the week you can find her at St. Matthias Catholic School in North York, where the 55-year-old Vaughan resident is the principal responsible for 196 students from junior kindergarten to grade eight. It’s Antonini’s natural environment — a good thing since she may be at school six or seven days a week (she’s also supervising principal to a weekend language program in which students learn about their Italian, Vietnamese, Polish, Maltese, Spanish and Ukrainian heritage). She has spent most of her life working in schools like this one, and learning in classrooms, having been with the Toronto Catholic District School Board since 1980. Beginning as an Italian instructor who had only arrived one year earlier from Palermo to visit family in the GTA (she would meet her husband, then and still her cousin’s best friend, on her second day in Toronto, get married and have her first of two children within 18 months of touching down in Canada), she got her start teaching after the priest who baptized her daughter mentioned that the TCDSB was hiring. She says she is “grateful” to the board for offering her “the opportunity to begin my career.” She got the job and worked at a school at Keele and Lawrence, teaching Italian to 4- to 14-year-olds during the day and commuting downtown to the University of Toronto


at night, where she was pursuing her undergraduate degree in French, Italian and Fine Art. After nine years of balancing work, school, home, husband and kids, she received her B.A. She took a year off work to attend the Faculty of Education at York University, graduated in 1990, returned to the TCDSB, working as a teacher until 2003, in grades 2 through 6, as well as teaching students with learning disabilities. Antonini describes it as “an amazing experience,” but says of her teaching, “I didn’t want to limit myself. As a teacher, you can influence a classroom, but my goal was always to get into administration. I worked with principals and saw how much they were able to help in a day. They had an impact on teachers, students, parents and the community,” says Antonini. So she returned to school in 1996, while still a teacher, earning her Masters of Administration from Niagara University in 2000. She applied for and received a viceprincipal posting and, after three years, became a principal, a role she has thrived in for the last nine years. “There was no question. I had been working towards this goal my entire life,” she says. Antonini remembers going over her homework with her grandparents, whom she praises for her progressive upbringing and instilling in her a “fixation on learning,” at 5:30 in the morning, every morning, and playing ‘school’, as a child growing up in Sicily. Though her version was less of a playground game and more of a professional prognostication. “I used to play student, teacher and principal, and I would intentionally make mistakes as the student so that I could mark them with the red pen as the teacher and then check in on my classroom as the principal.” In speaking with her, one realizes that it’s not her accomplishments that are so admirable, though they indubitably are, but rather the focus, work and sacrifice it took to obtain them. Antonini’s résumé is very impressive, but it’s the woman rather than her achievements that commands the most respect.


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Helping immigrants make Canada home By Daniela DiStefano

Imagine arriving at Toronto’s Union Station after a long voyage by ship from Italy. You’re exhausted and disoriented, and unsure of what the future will be like in this new country where you don’t understand the language and know next to no one. s you get off the train with the hundreds of other immigrants and what little possessions you’ve brought, you’re met by a group of friendly faces who speak your language and have come to make your first few days in this new place somewhat less intimidating. This was the experience of many Italian immigrants arriving to Toronto in the 1950s thanks to the work of the immigrant integration service organization that over the years transformed into COSTI. What started off as the Italian Immigrant Aid Society (IIAS) founded by local leaders and volunteers to help newcomers find homes, jobs and a warm meal amalgamated with the Centro Organizzativo Scuole Tecniche Italiane (Organizing Centre for Italian Technical Schools) in 1981 to become what is know today as COSTI. In it’s early days it was known to help Italian immigrants learn basic English, obtain the qualifications to work in the trades and rehabilitate those who had been injured in the workplace. Today its 17 GTA locations and over 300 staff speaking more than 63 languages provide education, social, and employment services that aid more than 35,000 Toronto area newcomers from around the world each year. “In the early years we were very grounded in the Italian community, and as more newcomers arrived in Toronto from places like Vietnam, Africa and the Caribbean in the 1970s and 1980s we adapted and responded to these new waves of immigrants,” says Josie Di Zio, Senior Director of Program Planning and Development at COSTI. Like most Italian-Canadians in Toronto, Di Zio was familiar with COSTI’s work in the community before she joined the organization in 1999. From a


young age she developed a keen interest in cultural diversity, and studied Anthropology in University before beginning a career in immigration services. “As the child of immigrants I knew first-hand what it was to feel like an outsider in the neighbourhood, and my experiences growing up made me sensitive to the Josie Di Zio, COSTI challenges of being a newcomer,” she says. “At COSTI I’ve found a great place to work with diverse groups of people and celebrate multiculturalism.” Di Zio spends her days keeping current with demographic changes and residential patterns of immigrant groups, and legislative policies and funding that may influence who will be arriving to Ontario and the types of services COSTI can provide them. “It’s about meeting the needs of the highly educated and professional immigrants who are having difficulty finding employment,” she says. The response from COSTI has been specialized integration programs, online services and high-level language training that will prepare immigrants for the demands of the workplace and their desired occupation. “There are also other groups, such as refugees, coming here under difficult circumstances that require the basic needs to become established,” says Di Zio. For these newcomers, COSTI’s centres will provide orientation tools and guide them on things such as how to take public transit, open a bank account and register their children in school. It will also offer support programs for youth, seniors, and women, mental health services, and mentorship programs that all new Canadians can take part in. As the numbers and ethnicities of those assisted by COSTI continue to grow, Di Zio is confident the organization and its immigrant communities will thrive as they participate in all aspects of Canadian life. “New Canadians come to this country hoping to find opportunities and happiness, and with our support they can achieve the success they hope to find for themselves and their families.”

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Frank Ferragine


A weatherman with a green thumb and strong family foundations

By Stephanie Grella

For the past eight years, Frank Ferragine has been seen every morning, bright and early, on Citytv’s Breakfast Television (BT). From weather specialist to gardening guru, Ferragine has become a national voice for Canada’s horticulture industry. But with his Italian roots as the foundation for his success, Ferragine claims to have been “Frankie Flowers” long before he became a household name. rowing up in Bradford, Ontario, Ferragine was raised in a traditional Italian family that founded their business on farming. Immigrating from Crotone, Calabria, Ferragine’s grandparents came to Canada in the 1950s and soon began their greenhouse business that still thrives today. Ferragine and the Breakfast Television team Having seen his family’s drive and passion, Ferragine credits his upbringing for his valued work ethic. “I often joke that my family believes in child labour,” laughs Ferragine. “They’ve taught us so much about working hard and showed us that you only get what you give.” Spending weekends and March breaks at the family greenhouse, Ferragine recalls all the perks of growing up Italian: family values, constant drive, and of course, a love for food. But his family shares many more commonalities. Ferragine, born Francis Ferragine, was named after his grandfather. By age five, friends and family began to call him Frankie, avoiding the confusion that surrounded him and his grandfather. Once he started playing on sports teams, Ferragine quickly became adept


to “Frankie Flowers”, a nickname his teammates created after constantly mispronouncing Ferragine. “People really enjoyed saying this name,” says Ferragine. “It really speaks to who I am.” Now, Frankie Flowers is more than just a friendly nickname — it’s a credible source. From sitting on the Board of Directors for Toronto’s Flower and Garden Trade Show “Canada Blooms” to writing two books, Get Growing and Pot It Up, in the past two years, Ferragine has offered a great deal to the horticulturists and avid gardeners alike in Toronto and beyond. “Gardening and food are things that we all share, regardless of age, diversity, and public status,” says Ferragine. “Gardening and eating well can benefit so many people and their communities.” With two sons — ages six and four — opportunity to share his passion for gardening and food continues at home, where he and his family garden all the time. In an effort to show them the flower business first-hand, Ferragine takes his sons to the Bradford family greenhouse almost every weekend, where they go on delivery runs with nonno. “One day I asked my youngest son Gavin what he learned,” says Ferragine, laughing. “And he said ‘no money, no flowers.’” Carrying on Italian traditions he’s known since childhood, Ferragine and a close friend from Sicily get together every summer with their families to make tomatoes and peppers. “With all the eating we do, we don’t get much done,” laughs Ferragine. “But we have a great time.” With Ferragine, the only ingredients needed seem to be family, friends, and food — “and a good bottle of red,” adds Ferragine. Since his younger brother Anthony passed away in 1998 from Ewing’s sarcoma, Ferragine has truly learned how short and fragile life can be. “Life is all about cherishing the small moments, like watching a nice sunrise, tasting a really good meal, and especially being with family,” says Ferragine. “No matter what comes our way, we always stick by each other.”

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Li fe &People

TV personality and realtor

Sandra Rinomato An investment in independence By Vanessa Santilli

When high-profile realtor Sandra Rinomato meets a client from an immigrant family on HGTV Canada’s Buy Herself, her Italian roots make it easy to relate.

hen it comes to dealing with women who are breaking the mould, my family upbringing and personal experience allow me to talk to them on their level and truly understand what they're going through," says Rinomato, a realtor for the past 16 years who didn't think twice before buying property on her own years ago. Born and raised in Toronto by Abbruzzese parents, Rinomato says that 1 in 4 property buyers today is a single woman. Recognizing this trend, she came up with the concept for Buy Herself to help single women navigate the often intimidating and daunting world of property ownership. "Even if they do hope to get married and have a family, they're not holding back from buying real estate because they see the viability of it," she says. Recalling the story of her aunt who was unable to secure a mortgage on her own in the 1970s, Rinomato knows it wasn't so long ago that women were deterred from buying property solo. "The bank wouldn't give her the mortgage because she was a single female," she says. "She needed a male co-signer. I've always remembered that story." Rinomato, who is the former host of Property Virgins, says helping people realize their dreams is the best part of her job.


"I'm a people person, so when I'm talking to someone, their energy, their story and their dream inspire me and then I want to help them," she says. Day in day out, Rinomato enjoys being able to find the right home for clients. "Seeing their happy faces when they get what they want is wonderful." But Rinomato says the overwhelming reaction from fans was unexpected. "I get e-mails and tweets from people in cities that I've never been to — or will never go to — that are thanking me for helping them buy a house through the advice on the show. That's thrilling." In addition to her work in television, Rinomato runs her own full service brokerage in Toronto's west end. She's also written a book titled Realty Check: The Real Scoop on Real Estate and was the recipient of the Stevie Award for Women in Business for Best Canadian Entrepreneur. But like all careers, her work is not without its challenges. She sometimes finds herself teaching the same lesson to the same person over and over again without much progress. "It's a tough job and if you're just in it for the money, you'll probably burn out. Your soul has to be satisfied by it in some way." Aside from her zeal for real estate, Rinomato is also passionate about saving the environment — which she has incorporated into her home. Her house is equipped with solar panels and a rainwater collection system to water her garden — rather than using city water — along with a greywater system. "It takes the water from your shower and bath, cleans it and then you flush your toilet with it," she says. "You use the water twice so it cuts down on your

water consumption and sewage." She has also purchased a Tesla electric car. And for her well-known no-nonsense approach to real estate, Rinomato credits her Italian upbringing for helping her to develop a thick skin. "That prepared me for real estate," she says. "But I also think of the Italian women in and around the GTA and we all have that quality. We're going to tell it like it is."

Treasures ofItaly Tour

Toronto APRIL-MAY 17-32_Layout 1 13-03-26 11:15 AM Page 23

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• Wine and olive oil tasting in San Gimignano In collaboration with

La Mamma Italiana

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Li fe &People


By Daniela DiStefano

She’ll smother you with hugs and kisses, feed you no matter how full you are and at times be a little demanding, but it’s all to make sure you turn out the best that you can be. Mamma, ma, mother or mom — no matter how you call her she’ll be there to mend a loose button or sit and talk for hours over a cappuccino. Panoram discovers how Italian-Canadian mothers have fed the souls and stomachs of our community.

n Italian mother is the quintessential woman. We are the heart of the household, the one they all come to for help or advice or a good bowl of pasta. The Italian mother runs it all, but makes everyone else look good. It means defending family like a ferocious bear, having a toughness that is unsurpassed and a tenderness that could melt a rock.” Sandra Rinomato, author (Realty Check), HGTV host, Real Estate Broker


“My parents, Italian immigrants of the 1950s, shaped my sense of Italian identity. I have raised three sons, now I have three daughters-in-law and three grandchildren, with whom I share those values, language, cultures and accepting that family life is all about change, growth and unconditional love. My mother would say to me, ‘The way things are done changes and thank heavens for that.’ She instilled in me that mothers are strong, keep family united and have limitless capacity to love.” Caroline DiCocco, music teacher, writer and former parliamentarian “I grew up stirring things on the stove with my mom, from the risotto to the polenta to the sugo. Our kitchen was where we talked, where I learned to cook, where my mom spoon in hand would pause to pour over the newspaper for a few moments to catch up on the politics of the day. And so it was that I learned to cook and think. My mother and I shared ideas, and we also had the same voice, indistinguishable from each other. But my mom gave me my other voice too: the one that keeps

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Anna Maria Tremonti with mother Eleanor Tremonti

asking questions, the one more afraid of staying silent than speaking up. She died in October at the age of 84. But I still have her voice — the strong one, the one she taught me to use. And I can still stir the risotto to perfection.” Anna Maria Tremonti, Host, The Current, CBC Radio One “I see our role as mothers is not to shape our children into images of ourselves or of what we want them to be, but to bring out the best in them so that they might be their truest, happiest selves.” Michelle Alfano, novelist and editor “Ho imparato molto dalla mia mamma che è stata una donna e mamma molto forte e coraggiosa con grande fede e tenacia. Lei ci ha insegnato che la donna fa il buon marito. La donna è la colonna della casa, è quella che regge e tiene salda la famiglia. Sa perdonare, sa stare in silenzio quando è necessario e sa reagire nelle difficoltà. Sa soffrire senza far pesare la sofferenza a nessuno e sa darti conforto quando ne hai bisogno. Essere donna e mamma non è facile, ma è importante ed il suo ruolo è fondamentale in una società che cambia continuamente.” Domenica Belmonte, Italian Language Teacher, St. Clare Catholic School

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Li fe &People - Future Leader


Jennifer Corriero Empowering youth

By Vanessa Santilli

ur vision is based on the idea that young people everywhere in the world are actively engaged in shaping a more peaceful, inclusive and sustainable world,” says 32-year-old Corriero, who grew up in Vaughan, Ontario. Since its creation in 2000 with co-founder Michael Furdyk, the organization's flagship program — website — has reached more than 20 million unique visitors worldwide, with more than 400,000 members. The site showcases profiles and stories where youth can connect and be inspired by young leaders globally, along with an online zine and educational resources, among various other tools. “We recently partnered with Canadian Heritage to develop a program called Defining Moments, where we held an art contest and collection on Canadian identity,” says Corriero. Over the years, TakingITGlobal has partnered with numerous organizations including Microsoft, the United Nations Association in Canada and the Canadian Department of Foreign Affairs. Corriero's motivation to create the organization stemmed from her mandatory community service hours in high school. “It really drew me in,” she says. “I realized what a difference it makes to a community when young people are actively involved.” On a global scale, she has seen the importance of bringing youth together firsthand. At 14 years old, she was encouraged to apply for the Giocchi della Gioventu, a youth “Olympics” for those with Italian roots worldwide. Proud to identify as an Italian Canadian - on her trip to Turin, the desire to connect with other cultures was instilled in her. “Because of that trip, which I only got to do because of my Italian heritage, my interest in other cultures grew even further.” Following her high school years, Corriero received a liberal arts degree along with a Masters in Environmental Studies from York University. Along with her work as a social entrepreneur, Corriero is a speaker, consultant and advisor. Her resume is extensive, with one of the most recent additions being appointed as an adjunct professor in the Faculty of Health at York University in 2011. In 2009, she was awarded the prestigious Giovanni Caboto Award by the Confederation of Italian Entrepreneurs Worldwide. "If you look at Italians throughout history … their contribution to culture and the arts and to creativity itself has been so significant and having Italian roots connects me to that."


Corriero has participated in various international delegations including the World Economic Forum, the Education World Forum and the Future of Youth Movements Summit, to name a few of the many. Looking forward, she hopes to figure out how to advance the policy agenda to create more systemic opportunities for youth around the world. She is currently working on proposal ideas to further this cause and has worked with more than 10 UN agencies over the past decade trying to support youth involvement. As a new mother at a different stage of life, Corriero views herself as an "intergenerational bridge." “I'm very convinced that we need to provide more opportunity for young people at that critical window between 13 and 30,” says Corriero. “The big decisions you make at that stage in your life fundamentally affect what you have access to later on.” Each and every day, this social entrepreneur thrives off of the idea of helping to make the world a better place. “What motivates me is the fear of a world that is apathetic and the hope or idealism that comes with what I see when people care … Every act of kindness and every act of creativity can contribute to people's lives.”

I realized what a difference it makes to a community when young people are actively involved.

From a young age, Jennifer Corriero's Italian heritage has shaped her appreciation for the positive impact of community and culture in bringing people together. As a result, she co-founded TakingITGlobal, a non-profit organization that empowers young people across the world to understand and act on the world's greatest challenges.

Photographer: Gregory Varano Location: TakingITGlobal offices

One More Day

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Li fe &People


Concettina Coppolino

If I had one more day with our mom, I would stamp out the sting of racism that had shadowed her all her life and I would shout out for all to hear and see: “Look here! Here she is! Our mom! Broken English and all!”

It has been seven years since you've passed, and today, as I write this wistful memory, your voice is still so very clear as you urge us to “Non avere rimpianti, cambiate voi stessi e miglioratevi.” (Don't regret, reform and improve yourselves). If I had just one more day to spend with you, mom, I would shout with pride from across the rooftops for all our friends to hear, those who are so unlucky as to be ignorant of the character and spirit of the Italian immigrant: “Look here! Here she is! Our mom! Yolanda

Liberata Alonzi If I had one more day with my mother, I would drive her to Florida to see my condo and talk to her for 24 hours non-stop. Unfortunately, I purchased the condo four years after she passed. One of her biggest weaknesses was the beauty of flowers and the flowers in Florida are breathtaking. We would sit together on her veranda surrounded by her flower garden and proudly she would tell me of how many neighbours would stop and admire the beauty of her masterpiece. I would walk arm in arm with her, and hear her voice, see her smile, and listen to her stories of past years of struggles and hardships she endured during war years. She would tell me stories of my nonna, back in Italy, and she would always give me wise advice on this journey called life; especially on bringing up my beautiful daughters Paula and Claudia and to ensure I teach them the same family values she taught me. I would end my day by telling her how my heart aches and how empty my life has been without her all these years. In the same breath, I would ask her for strength and courage to always move forward and that I would love her forever and hope to achieve the beauty and love she has bestowed on me every day of my life. Now she is surrounded by the most beautiful flowers in heaven in the arms of our heavenly father, which she so deserves. Rest in peace my beautiful mamma until we meet again. Rudy

And so, living within a culture of democratic-imperialism, conditioned by our school-teachers, we essentially did her away … In retrospect, we realize the serious mistake we had made as children — too late to make amends. How unfair we were to you, mom; you, with such innate intelligence, who taught us solid values of hard work, the importance of education, love, honesty and respect; you, who showed more class in one little finger than any man or woman of any stripe.

As children of Italian immigrant parents, living in Toronto in the 1930s onward, we were taught in the school system that English was better; that English was the only acceptable language. Made to feel embarrassed by her broken English, as young people, we were ashamed to introduce our mom to our schoolfriends and later to our colleagues at work and university. Mom, who had immigrated to Canada from Italy, subsequently married, and had raised us four children alone as our dad had passed away early in life. It was a period in which multiculturalism had not entered anyone’s consciousness and a time when anyone speaking with an accent or in broken English was deemed to be inferior and even labeled as stupid.

What would you do if you had one more day to spend with a deceased loved one?

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Toronto APRIL-MAY 17-32_Layout 1 13-03-26 11:16 AM Page 28

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Li fe &People


Nick Discepola Family First By Sabrina Marandola

Imagine leaving a small village in Italy as a little boy to end up one day in Canada’s House of Commons as a Member of Parliament. It’s a path that many immigrants could never even dream up. But in his 62 years of life, Nick Discepola accomplished just that. e was wise, caring, a family man,” says his youngest son Marco. “He was a strong presence and always gave the family a sense that we would always be protected, taken care of and loved,” agrees Marco’s older brother Michele. Discepola passed away from pancreatic neuroendocrine cancer this past fall, in November 2012. His four children say that since the day he was diagnosed in May 2009, their father battled the disease head-on, with courage. “From his hospital bed, dad still managed to make us laugh, provided us with a sense of reassurance and love, knowing that we had each other and he would always be with us,” says eldest child Lisa. “Although to most, he appeared as a businessman and political figure, he was a joker — always playing pranks! He was the life of the party and a kid at heart.” His wife Mary Alice, his four children and three grandchildren miss him every day — but remember him very fondly. Nick Discepola was actually born “Nunzio,” in Volturara Irpina (a town in Avellino, Campania). His family left from the port of Naples for Canada when he was seven years old. “The family moved to Outlook, Saskatchewan, where my grandfather worked for the railways,” Lisa says. They ultimately moved to Montreal, where Discepola graduated from McGill, and started his own high-tech company when he was 26. But the entrepreneur and family man soon entered the world of politics. In 1983, he became a city councillor in Kirkland. Six years later, by the time Discepola was 40, he was elected mayor of the municipality. He turned to federal politics in 1993, when he won the riding of Vaudreuil and sat as a Liberal MP until 2004. “My dad was so grateful to his adoptive country, he wanted to play an integral part in ensuring it remained the envy of nations,” Lisa says. “He was interested in ensuring that Canadians and soon-to-be Canadians had the same opportunities, which he felt he had when he immigrated to Canada,” adds Michele. Some of Discepola’s former colleagues say they appreciated his work. Massimo Pacetti, Liberal MP for St. Leonard — St. Michel, knew Discepola for more than 15 years. “He was very practical. He didn't speak unless he had something to say,” Pacetti recalls, adding that he always knew he could lean on Discepola for support. “He was a friend first, and a colleague second. When we spoke, our conversations were based on a friendship, and not lip service,” Pacetti says. “He stood out in my eyes because he told you how it was. [There were not too] many grey areas with him.” Although Discepola’s job required him to travel to Ottawa, his children say they knew their family always came first. “He was a true leader, even with the family,” says Laura. “He was always involved in our activities, and always made sure to be part of


family functions.” This held true always — and never more so than when times got really tough in 2000. Discepola’s wife Mary Alice was diagnosed with cancer. Her hospital room became his living quarters. “My mom spent nine months in the hospital, and he spent every hour with her, sleeping there, working there … never leaving her side,” Lisa recounts, adding that her mom beat the disease after 27 months of chemotherapy. With that battle conquered and their children grown, the couple spent their last several years together in Toronto, so that they could be close to their grandchildren. “He taught us, above all, to love and respect one another, to understand that family and love comes first, and to apply that in our lives,” says Marco. Nick Discepola also made sure to pass on his Italian heritage and traditions to his four children while they were growing up. “We grew up with our grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins all within a few metres from each other,” Lisa says. “[We went to] Italian school on Saturdays. There was even the odd accordion lesson!” Discepola could not get away from his Italian roots. When he was not working, he was very involved in Montreal’s Italian community. He participated in events with the CIBPA (Canadian Italian Business & Professional Association), and even helped found the West Island Italian Association. In 1998, when a natural disaster struck, and his home region of Campania was devastated by mudslides, Discepola went to Italy with the federal government to offer aid. “He'll be remembered for his honesty and integrity,” Pacetti says. “Even after he was defeated [and lost his seat in 2004], he was the same person, whether he was a politician or not.” His family agrees. “He always showed people respect and rarely talked in a negative manner towards anyone,” Michele says. “He was humble given his achievements.”

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Food & Wine

Move over wine GTA customers are developing a buzz for

Italian beer

By Liz Allemang

Times are changing and so are attitudes about what and how to drink in the GTA. Whereas beer has long held a reputation as swill for “quaffing,” as Antonio Ruscetta, a product consultant at the LCBO in Woodbridge puts it, brew seems to be getting its due, or at least a respect that has proved so evasive in Canada’s proudly casual approach to drinking the stuff historically. eople are starting to take a greater interest in beer and in Italian beer. In the last few years, we’ve seen the average customer become more knowledgeable, but also more interested in what they’re drinking,” says Ruscetta. Having worked with the LCBO for 17 years, he is amazed at the present popularity of Moretti and Peroni Nastro Azzurro at his store, located at Highway 7 and Weston Road. “Anybody with ties to Italy who is buying beer at the store will have at least one Italian beer in the mix,” says Ruscetta. That is “if they’re not buying exclusively Italian.” Though beer is booming in Italy, Toronto is, at present, only able to experience a taste of what’s available: this is because the liquor control board system in Ontario is highly regulated and it’s a lengthy and rigorous application process to get a beer listed at the LCBO. Imported beers require representation by agents who have an interest in and familiarity with the local market. Though The Beer Store is not so discerning about what brands they allow on their shelves, they charge a hefty fee for the right to sell. It’s likely too expensive to be worth the while of the many smaller, family-owned breweries that operate in Italy who might otherwise take a gamble on the Canadian market. While the number of Italian listings remains concise, this could change with a surge in birra consumption and appreciation. If they drink it, it will come. “It’s been slow and steady, but [the Italian brands] have captured the market. [In other places I worked], we would order two 24s of Italian beer for the week,” says Ruscetta, “Once I [started working in Woodbridge], I was amazed to see how much was sold: we’re ordering it by the skid!” But it’s not just Italians and Italian-Canadians who are ordering Italian beer, insists Christie Kokoshko, who founded International Beer Brands, an importing agency, four years ago. “There’s a market for anything Italian in Toronto and in Ontario,” she says. “Whether you’re Italian or not, you have a connection to the culture, be it through film, fashion, cars or food.” Torontonians’ unequivocal love of Italian food and drink helped solidify the near-instant popularity of the Menabrea beer. It’s a super-premium brew from Biella in the North of Italy that she imports, exclusively on draught, for some of the city’s most fashionable restaurants, including Terroni and Michael’s on Simcoe. (It’s also available by the keg at some locations of The Beer Store.) “It’s not a Moretti or a Peroni in the sense that it’s a truly Italian beer,” says Kokoshko. “It’s made in smaller batches in Italy. It’s still made with Italian water, which is more oxygenated, and is still owned by the same family who started it 150 years ago.” While she only works with brands she really believes in, Kokoshko says she was delighted that the local marketplace liked the foreign brew as much as she did. “It’s a lighter, more floral beer, with low alcohol. Italian beers are well suited to Canadian taste because they’re lagers and they’re very drinkable,” she says. “But with Menabrea, it’s a very refined taste. It’s subtle.”


What’s been interesting — and so essential to its success, as well as the success of the few other Italian beers available in the GTA — is how people are beginning to think of beer instead of wine at mealtime. “Beer can be more complex than wine and we don’t usually give it the time of day or respect,” says Luigi Beccati, owner of A1 Autostrada, an Italian restaurant in Vaughan. A previous reluctance to order beer with anything other than a pie had been psychological, he says. “People don’t put food and beer together: with pizza it’s a marriage made in heaven, but with pasta, steak, it’s also great,” says Beccati. “There’s no reason why swordfish and a Moretti can’t go together.” Kokoshko notes that there’s no better palate cleanser for a strong, rich triple-crème cheese than beer (she’s even held birra-formaggio tasting nights). Take that, vino bianco. And Ruscetta insists that an Italian beer, best drunk out of a tall, skinny glass, brings balance to an antipasto plate, a perfect complement to unctuous prosciutto and salty Parmigiano.

“There’s no reason why swordfish and a Moretti can’t go together.” Once people started to come around to the idea of drinking beer with a fine meal, sales skyrocketed. It would seem beer is having a moment: Beccati says that he experienced a 70% jump in Italian beer sales last summer over the summer previous. “It started with wine, but now people are beginning to branch out with beer. They may have always had their favourite beer, but now they are starting to try something new,” says Ruscetta. “People are taking a risk, but because of the similarities between Canadian and Italian beers, it’s a pretty safe bet.”

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Food & Wine


GTA Espresso Bars By Danila Di Croce

We all know Italians love their espresso. The rich liquid is a staple of “la dolce vita,” and espresso bars can be found on just about every corner in Italy. And the tradition has now made its way to North America with Italian espresso bars popping up throughout the GTA. or a native Italian, an espresso bar is a local hangout to meet up with friends; catch up on town gossip; or a home away from home. Espresso bars are also quite different from the typical North American coffee franchise houses. In Italy, they are usually small in size, with little to no seating. Coffee is meant to be enjoyed while standing at the bar or seated on a stool, so if someone wants to sit and relax for a while there is often a surcharge. Pastries or biscotti are available, and often the bar will also offer “tramezzini” (little sandwiches). In keeping with the authentic style of these locales, North American espresso bars such as Si Espresso Bar, located near the Danforth, have built their spaces with similar design principles. Owner Saverio Cosenza, a first generation Italian-Canadian, explains his philosophy: “When I first moved in, the seating was made to face the walls. I tried creating a space where people are forced to look at each other and talk. I try to create an environment where it’s a community. People come, they meet, and they chat.” Cosenza is not the only one who recognized this need to change the coffee house framework. Yorkville’s Zaza Espresso Bar owner, Raffaele Bettalico, a native from Naples, also felt that North America was missing a bit of that social aspect in its coffee houses. “The coffee is at the forefront, but behind coffee is so much more; there is the friendship.” In Italy, having a coffee is all about the experience. Perhaps this is one of the reasons why espresso bars have been on the rise in Toronto in the past few years. Nicole Angellotti, owner of Lit Espresso Bar on College St. explains, “I think Starbucks and places like that have taken the average coffee drinker and shown them what potential espresso-based drinks can have. This has become popular because people knew they liked espresso-based beverages, but wanted the next level, and that is us. Fresh beans, hand-pulled shots, and care into everything we do.” In addition to the experience of having a great coffee, espresso bars emphasize the sharing of that experience, something which does not necessarily occur in North American coffee houses. As Cosenza points out, “It’s a computer culture,


everyone is seated there at the tables on their computer;” or perhaps they ask for a “to-go” cup, something which Bettalico thinks is somewhat of a fashion statement now. He admits the “to-go” idea was a bit of a challenge to understand initially. In Italy, even though the espresso is enjoyed quickly, it is usually enjoyed with company, even if that company is just the barista. “I wanted to tell my customers, ‘come here, have an espresso, let’s have a little chat, two minutes of your day.’ When you order a coffee to go, it’s like you’re sending a subconscious message that you don’t have time to socialize ... you just have time to drink your coffee.” These locales offer a point of connection with others; something that is often lost in our North American drive-thru or assembly-line ordering culture. Espresso bars remind us of the “Italian way of life” — no matter how busy it can get, there is always time to take a moment and enjoy the finer things such as espresso and good company.

Si Espresso Bar

Since 1953 we have delivered fresh baked Italian artisan bread. Our Commitment is quality, tradition, passion and the finest ingredients.


8633 Weston Road, Unit 6 Woodbridge, Ontario L4L 9R6

SINCE 1953

Fin dal 1953 produciamo pane artigianale italiano fresco. Il nostro impegno è garanzia di qualità, tradizione, passione e degli ingredienti più genuini.


(905) 265-1438


Toronto APRIL-MAY 17-32_Layout 1 13-03-26 11:16 AM Page 32


Food & Wine

Vini di primavera

Gaia Massai

La primavera è appena iniziata e presto un’esplosione di note floreali riempirà l’aria. Oltre allo sbocciare dei primi fiori, questo momento di rinascita della natura è caratterizzato dall’arrivo dei primi frutti e delle prime verdure di stagione e dai particolari odori erbacei e dei prati appena liberatisi dal manto nevoso. Fino a non molto tempo fa, prima che la facilità di trasporto di un prodotto fresco da un capo all’altro del mondo rendesse il concetto di “frutta e verdura di stagione” quasi osboleto, il passaggio dall’inverno alla primavera era scandito e percepito in modo inequivocabile dall’arrivo sulle tavole di frutti quali ciligie, fragole e albicocche e di verdure quali asparagi, fagiolini e cicoria da taglio. Perché non dare il benvenuto alla bella stagione scegliendo vini che ricordino i profumi caratteristici di questo periodo? Molti vitigni presentano note aromatiche specifiche e facilmente distinguibili, che vengono raggruppate, per comodità, in categorie come “fruttato”, “floreale” ed “erbaceo”.


2009 Supertuscan

Available through Vintages Online Exclusives #207464

Bring on the Bling!

This wine's bottle is embedded with dozens of Swarovski crystals that spell out the wine's name, Dia-dema.Inside is a blend of Sangiovese, Cabernet, Merlot and Syrah that shows lush softness and sound tones of red cherry and chocolate.

Score - 93.

(Monica Larner, Wine Enthusiast, Feb. 1, 2012)

Tel. 905.264.6008

Go on line to and order this wonderful wine and its beautiful bottle today

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Food & Wine

rovate ad abbinare alcuni dei seguenti “vini primaverili” italiani al frutto o fiore di stagione corrispondente: un modo semplice, ma efficace, per ritrovare il piacere di mangiare e bere seguendo i ritmi della natura. Ricordate che il bouquet di un vino è solitamente composto da un insieme di note aromatiche e spesso sono riscontrabili sia note fruttate che floreali, di intensità più o meno forte. I vini o vitigni qui sotto descritti, quindi, presentano un bouquet complesso, ma la nota aromatica principale è riconducibile a specifici frutti o fiori.


Profumi fruttati Albicocca Vini bianchi giovani ottenuti da uve Cortese, come ad esempio il Gavi Docg piemontese, il Bianco di Custoza Doc veneto e l’Oltrepo’ Pavese Doc lombardo, che presentano note fresche di albicocca, una struttura leggera ed armonica e un gradevole sapore asciutto. Abbinamenti ideali sono piatti a base di pesce, come il merluzzo bollito e la trota alla mugnaia o verdure di stagione impanate e fritte.

Fragola Dall’Emilia Romagna forse il vino più conosciuto è il Lambrusco: che sia fermo o frizzante, rosso o rosato, il profumo di fragola e lampone è la sua caratteristica inequivocabile. Negli anni ‘80 era il vino italiano più venduto all’estero ed ebbe particolare successo negli Stati Uniti, fino a rappresentare il 50% dei vini italiani importati in America. Si abbina bene a piatti robusti a base di carne di agnello e a piatti tipici della cucina emiliana come lo zampone e il cotechino.


Ciliegia Uno dei vitigni che ricorda maggiormente il profumo della ciliegia è il Primitivo, che trova la sua espressione più conosciuta nel pugliese Primitivo di Manduria. Vino robusto e corposo che nasce in climi caldi, ha il colore rosso intenso delle ciliegie mature ed ne emana il profumo, insieme a note di prugna e amarena. E’ indicato per affogare frutta di stagione, ottimo con fragole, ciliegie e come ingrediente pricipale per la sangria.

Profumi floreali Molti vini presentano note floreali che possono essere prevalenti o svelarsi come sfumature secondarie. Il profumo dei vini bianchi giovani prodotti da uve Gewürztraminer , specialmente quelli provenienti dall’Alto Adige, è caratterizzato per la maggior parte da note di fiori bianchi quali il gelsomino, il biancospino e la rosa bianca. Questo vino molto aromatico si abbina bene a verdure dal sapore delicato, come il carciofo, e a carni bianche, anche speziate. Altro vitigno dai profumi tipicamente primaverili è il Sangiovese, in particolar modo quando utilizzato per la produzione di vini giovani e freschi come il Chianti o il Sangiovese di Romagna: qui spiccano al naso i boccioli di violetta, mammola e rosa canina, con un finale di mora e frutti a bacca rossa. I tannini presenti in questo tipo di vini li rende adatti ad accompagnare salumi e carni rosse. E infine, per affondare il naso in un prato fiorito, provate un Vermentino: con varianti regionali come il sardo Vermentino di Gallura o il ligure Vermentino di Luni. Quest’ultimo vitigno, aromatico, sprigiona note di fiori di campo e erba fresca ed è ottimo con antipasti di mare e crostacei.








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Food & Wine



Mother’s Day Menu By Jenny Galati

Photography by Venus Gennaro

If it is true that the kitchen is the heart of the home, then the soul of the home is the matriarch who is often found hovering over the burners. The image of mamma lovingly preparing a family meal is likely a treasured one for most, and there are certain appetizing moments that conjure up wonderful memories: the slow-simmered sauce used to prepare lasagne for a Sunday supper, traditional biscotti baked for a special occasion, that supersized panino made by ever so carefully layering deli meats and cheese with homemade preserves for lunch, or even the spalmata of Nutella on a piece of bread as an afternoon snack. Mom nurtures and nourishes, feeding not just the stomach, but also the mind, heart and soul. o what better way to honour the woman whose words and embrace are as sweet as any confection she makes than with a classic and elegant three-course meal. Sweet Pea and Zucchini Risotto as a first dish, followed by Pesto and Prosciutto Chicken Parcels and finished off with Strawberry Icewine Tiramisu.


Sweet Pea and Zucchini Risotto (Serves 4)

Ingredients • 1 medium zucchini, sliced • ½ cup sweet peas (fresh or frozen) • 1 small onion, finely chopped • 1 ½ cups Arborio rice • ¼ cup white wine • 4 cups chicken or vegetable stock • 2 tbsp. olive oil • 2 tbsp. butter • ¼ cup grated Parmesan • Salt and pepper to taste

Preparation Warm up stock in a saucepan and set aside (this will be used to ladle into risotto afterwards). In a large pot over medium heat sauté the onion until translucent (approximately 5 minutes). Add in the rice, stirring to coat it and allowing it to toast slightly. Next, stir in the white wine and allow it to evaporate (2 minutes) before the addition of the zucchini and peas. Season with salt and pepper to taste, and then begin ladling in the warmed broth. Continue to cook the rice until al dente (approximately 20-25 minutes), adding the broth one cup at a time allowing for the liquid to be absorbed before adding more. Remove from heat and stir in the butter and Parmesan before serving.

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Food & Wine Pesto and Prosciutto Chicken Parcels (Serves 4)

Ingredients • 6 chicken breasts • 6 tsp. pesto (homemade or store-bought) • 6 large slices of prosciutto • 1 fior di latte, sliced • Salt and pepper to taste • Olive oil to drizzle

Preparation Wash and pat dry the chicken breasts. Lay each chicken breast lengthwise and slit open along one side leaving about ½ an


inch to create a wide pocket. Spread 1 tsp. of pesto on one side of the chicken and layer with 1-2 slices of the fior di latte. Then fold the other half of the breast to close the pocket. Season the chicken with salt and pepper to taste. Next, line a flat surface (the kitchen counter) with wax paper and vertically lay out the slices of prosciutto in a long row. Place each stuffed chicken breast over a slice of prosciutto and then wrap the prosciutto around each pocket. The prosciutto wrap, once placed seam side down on a baking sheet, will create a seal. Place the chicken parcels on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and cook on the middle rack of a preheated 400 degree oven for 20 minutes until the chicken browns and the prosciutto turns crispy. Drizzle with olive oil and serve with vegetables or mixed greens.

Individual Strawberry Preparation Lightly macerate the sliced strawberries in a bowl with 2 tbsp. of the Cabernet Icewine Tiramisu icewine. Next, place the mascarpone, whipping cream, vanilla and powdered (Serves 4)

Ingredients • ½ cup whipping cream • ½ cup mascarpone • 1 tsp. vanilla • 2 tbsp. powdered sugar • ¼ cup + 3 tbsp. Cabernet icewine • 1 packet savoiardi cookies • 1 cup sliced strawberries • 2 tbsp. strawberry jam • Slivered almonds (optional)

sugar in a mixing bowl and beat with whisk attachment at high speed until thick like firmly whipped cream (approximately 5 minutes). Spoon approximately 1 tablespoon of the cream mixture into individual ramekins. Spread evenly. Layer the savoiardi cookies (about 2-3 cookies per layer, cut into thirds to fit the ramekins or glass bowls) over the cream. Brush cookies with ¼ cup of icewine. Spoon the sliced berries over the cookies and top with cream. Continue to layer with cream, cookies and berries to fill the vessel, finishing off with a layer of berries on top. Refrigerate the ramekins for a minimum of 4 hours or overnight. When ready to serve, prepare the finishing glaze by melting the strawberry jam in a small saucepan over medium heat. Then remove from heat and stir in the remaining tablespoon of ice wine. Drizzle each portion of tiramisu with half a tablespoon of the glaze and garnish with slivered almonds before serving.

Living Italian Style

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Alessandro Cernuto

Marie-Christine Farace

Occupation: President of Operations Pur2o Canada Age: 25 Generation: Second Dad from: Rome Mom from: Cosenza, Calabria Speaks: Italian & English Raised in: Toronto Passion: Languages and business Clothes: Club Monaco sweater, Seven jeans, Lacoste shoes Favourite designer: Salvatore Ferragamo Store/Boutique: Harry Rosen Restaurant: Sotto Sotto Favourite dish: Risotto alla pescatore Absolute must in the pantry: Spaghetti Favourite wine: Caymus wine Favourite Italian saying: “Chi va piano va sano e lontano” Last time you went to Italy: Two years ago Favourite Italian city: Rome Place you must go back to at least one more time in

Photographer: Gregory Varano Make-up: Desi Varano Location: Volvo of Toronto

your life: Taormina, Sicily Favourite band or singer: Frank Sinatra Best e Italian movi Amici Miei Italian soccer team: Juventus Sexiest Italian: Federica Fontana Dream car: Ferrari Italia Best way to feel Italian in Toronto: Go to the Columbus Centre Mare o montagna: Mare Thing about you that would surprise most people: I am ¼ Palestinian Best coffee in Toronto: Rustic Bakery Best pizza in Toronto: Libretto Pet peeve: Disrespect

You know you are Italian when or if: You eat pasta five times a week Favourite thing to do in Toronto: Visit the Distillery District Most common name in your family: Antonio (4) Italian artist or actor you would like to meet: Eros Ramazzotti Best memory growing up as Italian: Spending the whole summer with my nonni Spaghetti o penne: Spaghetti Favourite flavour of gelato: Torrone Favourite Italian song: Se Bastasse una bella canzone by Eros Ramazzotti Plans for the summer: Go to Europe and visit my nonni

Nickname: MC, Cri Occupation: Office Coordinator Age: 24 Generation: Second Dad from: Roseto Valfortore, Foggia Mom’s side from: Foggia & Naples Speaks: English & Italian Raised in: Mississauga Passion: Travelling, food, fashion and PR Clothes: Smart Set blazer and pants, H&M top, Stance shoes Favourite designer: Missoni and Giorgio Armani Boutique: Zara Restaurant: Terroni Favourite dish: Nonna’s gnocchi al pomodoro Absolute must in the pantry: Nonna’s taralli and biscotti Favourite Italian saying or quote: “Il meglio deve ancora venire” Last time you went to Italy: July 2012 Place you must go back to at least one more time in your life: Rimini Favourite band or singer: Jovanotti Best Italian movie: Cinema Paradiso

Italian soccer team: Juventus Sexiest Italian: Luca Argentero Dream car: Fiat 500 by Gucci What you like most about our magazine: How it connects us to our culture and celebrates our roots Can’t forget the recipes! Best way to feel Italian in Toronto: Taste of Little Italy Thing about you that would surprise most people: I don’t eat fish Best coffee in Toronto: Crema Coffee Co. Best pizza in Toronto: My mother’s Pet peeve: The sound of people chewing loudly. Uffa! You know you are Italian when or if: The scent of simmering tomato sauce never gets old

Favourite thing to do in Toronto: Checking out different street festivals Most common name in your family: Concetta (4) You know you were raised Italian when: Salad comes last, always Italian artist or actor you would like to meet: Roberto Benigni Favourite Italian song: Baciami Ancora by Jovanotti Favourite Italian city: Perugia Best memory growing up Italian: The mind blowing fact that my 94-year-old nonna somehow guesses the correct answers on Wheel of “Fortuna,” despite her limited knowledge of the English language Plans for the summer: Backpacking through Europe before spending a couple months in Italy

See all past profiles on

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Vanessa Burgio

Fortunato Pezzo Nickname: Fort Occupation: New and Pre-Owned Sales Manager at Volvo of Toronto Age: 25 Generation: Second Parents from: Vibo Valentia, Calabria Speaks: Italian & English Raised in: Toronto

Name: Vanessa Burgio Occupation: Student at York University and Catholic elementary school teacher Age: 23 Generation: Second Dad from: Caltanissetta, Sicily Mom from: Avellino, Campania Speaks: English & Italian Raised in: Woodbridge

Passion: Cars, Toronto sports teams, marketing Clothes: Hugo Boss suit, Hugo Boss top, Ferragamo shoes Favourite designer: Hugo Boss Boutique: Harry Rosen Restaurant: Ki Modern Japanese and Bar Favourite dish: Steak and potatoes Favourite wine: Zio’s wine Last time you went to Italy: August 2010 Place you must go back to at least one more time in your life: Argentina Favourite band or singer: Drake Best Italian movie: The Godfather Italian soccer team: Juventus Sexiest Italian: Monica Bellucci

Clothes: UB jean jacket, Limite dress Favourite designer: Valentino Boutique: Aldo Restaurant: Peperoncino Trattoria Favourite dish: Pasta with fresh tomatoes and a bit of basil Absolute must in the pantry: Various types of pasta Favourite Italian saying: “La vita è bella” Last time you went to Italy: 2011 Place you must go back to at least one more time in your life: Positano, Italy Best Italian movie: Il bisbetico domato Italian soccer team: Juventus

Dream car: Enzo Ferrari What you like most about our magazine: It strengthens and retains the Italian culture Best way to feel Italian in Toronto: Having dinner at Mamma’s house on Christmas Eve Thing about you that would surprise most people: I love composing music Best coffee in Toronto: Bar Italia Best pizza in Toronto: Pizza Rustica You know you are Italian when or if: Your parents have three fridges and a freezer in the same house Your fashion idol: Gabriel Macht Favourite thing to do in Toronto: Attending night clubs with friends

Most common name in your family: Domenic (4) You know you were raised Italian when: Everyone is jealous of your lunch Italian artist or actor you would like to meet: Al Pacino Favourite Italian song: Chitarra vagabonda by Claudio Villa Favourite Italian city: Tropea If never visited, which city would you like to visit: Sao Paolo, Brazil Best memory growing up Italian: Large dinners with family Favourite thing about being Italian: Soccer pride Plans for the summer: Vacationing in Ibiza with all my friends

Dream car: A hybrid car to be a bit more environmentally-friendly What you like most about our magazine: I love the way that the Panoram magazine shares the beauty of Italian culture and its people, which gives readers the opportunity to further appreciate and participate in Italian culture Best way to feel Italian in Toronto: Watching and celebrating a soccer game with Italian fans Thing about you that would surprise most people: I can sing Best pizza in Toronto: La Piccola Rosa Pet peeve: Yelling You know you are Italian when or if: You use your hands to speak

To be considered for a photoshoot in future Living Italian Style sections, simply like Panoram Italia on Facebook, and express your interest on our wall. An administrator will get back to you with further details.

Favourite thing to do in Toronto: Latin ballroom dancing You know you were raised Italian when: You are surrounded by loud families and amazing Italian dishes Italian artist or actor you would like to meet: Andrea Bocelli Spaghetti o penne: Penne Favourite flavour of gelato: Vanilla Favourite Italian song: L’emozione non ha voce by Adriano Celentano Favourite Italian city: Venice Best memory growing up Italian: Learning how to speak Italian, which I think is the most beautiful language Plans for the summer: After graduation I would like to take a nice vacation

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Suit Up


1. 2.

By Alessia Sara Domanico

The two-piece triumphs for spring with fresh updates and lots of flair. s long as I’ve got my suit and tie…,” croons Justin Timberlake on the chorus for his recent track “Suit and Tie,” with Jay-Z piping in later on: “Tom Ford tuxedos for no reason.” It’s decisive to say that if two of the music industry’s biggest chart toppers are dedicating their vocal chords to a cut of fabric, then the suit is most certainly centre stage for the start of the social season. While the conventional matching set is nothing new for the style files, the spring 2013 collections saw designers propose their distinct philosophies to the concept of top and bottom.

“A 4.



The traditional suit is nowhere to be seen for men this season. Trousers are traded for shorts, tops and bottoms are purposely mismatched whether colour-wise or pattern-wise and materials are also original, so leave the wool blend for September and take a risk with lighter cottons, linen and even silk or satin. The wildly popular Dandy style is also back again for spring — this term originated in 19th century England, referring to a man who takes particular pride in his physical appearance and manner by dressing and conducting himself in a refined, yet eccentric manner.

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7. 8.

Jean Paul Gaultier embraced the new Dandy by throwing turbans on his male models and sending them out onto the runway in blazers with horizontal stripes and pants with vertical stripes, finished off with sneakers instead of lace-ups. Givenchy favoured classic black with cigarette-slim trousers, adding a distinctive bi-colour trim on their jackets which were left unbuttoned for an effortless feel. Brioni proposed the epitome of Dandy with iridescent silk blazers in shades like grape, forest green, cobalt and silver topped off with bow ties and black trousers. Trade in the trousers for shorts for an ultra-fancy game of croquet or a warm spring wedding. Dior Homme kept their suits monochrome in navy and grey with blazers cut like cardigans and hair slicked back for a Mad Men appeal.






1. Burberry Prorsum 2. Louis Vuitton 3. Hackett 4. Balmain 5. Brioni Menswear



6. Dior 7. Guess by Marciano 8. Jean Paul Gaultier 9. Ermenegildo Zegna 10. Guess by Marciano

11. Guess 12. Givenchy 13. Dior Homme 14. Michael Kors 15. Givenchy

The fun carries over to the women’s collections where colour, shape and embellishment are key suit fixtures. Jackets are anything but straight-cut with billowy sleeves, broad shoulders and oversized lapels. Rock’n’roll meets gypsy-chic at Balmain, where intricate mustard patterns splash across black, buttonless, Eighties-style blazers with their sleeves rolled up and harem pants that replace boot cut. The total white trend gets its day in the twinset sun at the likes of Givenchy (elbow-length bomber jackets and circus pants) and Chloé (sheer white skirts and blouses with white panel overlay), perfect for a Church ceremony or garden party. Vibrant coral and mustard are major hues for the season seen at Guess by Marciano and Michael Kors. Burberry Prorsum goes more old Hollywood glam with cream capes worn overtop classic black suits. Dior also threw back to a safer black suit, with a pop of colour via a primly tied kerchief around the neck — très joli!

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Southern Comfort!

PUGLIA By Francesca Spizzirri

Discover why Puglia’s rich history and agricultural heritage provide the perfect ingredients for a wonderful Italian holiday. reminder that Turkey, Greece and North hen it comes to travel there’s always Africa are neighbours. someplace new on the horizon. Places Puglia’s agricultural heritage and everlike Sri Lanka, Madagascar and Montenegro changing landscape provide the ingredients are quickly emerging as some of the hottest for a variety of culinary treats. Try the destinations for 2013, but there is one place sumptuous burrata, a fresh mozzarella off the beaten path that continues to gain casing filled with shredded pieces of momentum that is truly exciting — Puglia mozzarella and salted cream, or indulge — located on Southern Italy’s sun-drenched your sweet tooth with a pettola, a fried Adriatic coast. dough ball drizzled in Vincotto (cooked Quickly becoming the ‘IT’ destination wine). This region also produces 40% of among travel connoisseurs,’ Puglia is Italy’s olive oil, the perfect companion to hotter than ever with its emerging contemPuglia’s delicious bread that is always baked porary resort hotels, Apulian cuisine, prisin wood-burning ovens. tine beaches and picturesque villages. With its spectacular coastline and long Solidifying this notion, last October fishing tradition, Puglia serves up a superb celebrities Justin Timberlake and Jessica Biel selection of fresh local fish: red prawns, chose this stunning Mediterranean backmussels, anchovies and sea bass are featured drop to exchange their wedding vows. in the many restaurants that line the beach Puglia is an enclave that sits on the towns of Gallipoli, Otranto and Taranto. sunbaked high heel of Italy’s boot, perfectly Grotta della poesia - Roca Vecchia (Salento) In the region’s mountainous interior of situated on five hundred miles of Adriatic Cisternino and Valle d’Itria, meat reigns and Ionian coastline — mountains in the supreme. Visit the rosticceria butchers and enjoy a fabulous glass of wine; reds north, plains in the south — its stark, unspoiled beauty is home to some of the are especially good, as your meat is cooked in a wood-burning oven or hot brightest blue seas, historic little towns, diverse architecture, mouth-watering food, charcoal grill. colorful folk traditions, and the loveliest people in all of Italy. With a rich and ancient culture, brilliant seas, delicious food, and mix of Numerous invasions through the centuries by the Greek, Roman, Turkish and Baroque and Greek architecture, Puglia is quickly becoming Italy’s new Tuscany Spanish have created a rich and varied treasure trove of ancient relics and artifacts and definitely a place worth visiting on your next trip. that Puglia humbly displays. The region’s brilliantly whitewashed towns are a


FUN FACTS: • Bari is the capital city of Puglia. • There are 200 types of pasta in Puglia. • The baroque town of Lecce is nicknamed 'The Florence of the South.' • Visit Alberobello, a town made up entirely of white washed, circular houses with conical roofs called Trulli (remininscent of a smurf village). Trulli architecture

City of Alberobello

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SURROUNDINGS From Lecce’s baroque churches and old palazzos to Gallipoli and Otranto’s rustic seaside villages to the UNESCO protected conical trulli of Alberobello, Puglia offers a wide range of places to see and things to explore. Other great day trips include Castro, Porto Selvaggio, Cisternino, Locorotondo, Martina Franca, Polignano a Mare and Ostuni. So pack a bag, rent a car and start exploring! WHERE TO STAY: Overlooking the Adriatic Sea, Borgo Egnazia is a stunning seaside resort in the heart of Apulia nestled among olive and jasmine trees. A golf course, spa, and private beach club ensure your every need is catered to. This was also the location for Justin Timberlake and Jessica Biel’s marriage! Restored from the abandoned and decaying ancient caves in the village of Matera, Le Grotte De La Civita is located in a UNESCO World Heritage Site and provides guests with a place to escape the chaos of life and go back to a simpler time when a warm bath, great meal and good glass of wine were all the comforts they needed.

Borgo Egnazia seaside resort

WHERE TO EAT: For over 30 years the award-winning Osteria del Tempo Perso has been serving delicious Apulian specialities in the old town of Ostuni, the so called white town. Only a few metres away from the cathedral, it is perfectly inserted in this ancient location thanks to its traditions and its ancient rooms. SPECCHIA SANT'ORONZO is a beautiful restaurant/bar overlooking Polignano a Mare’s old town. Go in the evening and witness one of the most spectacular sunsets in the region followed by an after dinner walk to a pebble cove to enjoy the view of the caves and the old town built into them. GETTING TO PUGLIA Puglia is easily accessible by plane, train, or automobile. The closest airport is the Aeroporto di Bari Karol Wojtyla (named after Pope John Paul II), which offers connecting flights through Rome, Milan, and other Italian cities all year long. For a magnificent view, drive along the coastal highway SS89 dir/B and lose yourself among the regions unspoilt scenery.

Le Grotte De La Civita

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From not-so-secret gardens to floral etiquette, we look at Italy’s relationship with what spring has sprung By Alessia Sara Domanico

Though the Italian peninsula may be 9.6 million square kilometres smaller than Canada, its position in Europe affords it a varying set of climates that make for rich and diverse landscapes. The regions of Piedmont, Lombardy, Trentino Alto Adige, Veneto and FriuliVenezia Giulia generally enjoy more wildflower fields as they lie between the shared seasides of Southern France, the Northern Alps of Switzerland, the mountains and national parks of Austria and Slovenia. The southern coastal regions of Campania, Basilicata, Calabria and Puglia are blessed with colourful exotic plants such as flowering cactus, bougainvillea and orchids. talian gardens have a reputation for being some of the best in the world, from the ancient gardens of Pompei to Medieval cloisters and botanical gardens in areas that include Bologna, Florence and Rome. Of particular note are the Italian Renaissance gardens commissioned by the rich and powerful as a show of grandeur. While we can’t cover each and every must-see Italian garden, we’ve compiled a sampling of impressive and easy to reach spots below.


Floral Facts

• Popular flowers that grow in Italy include: bougainvillea, jasmine, bluebell, violets, roses, asters, sunflowers, cornflowers, dahlias, geraniums and giant daisies.

• The most common flowers to present as a gift in Italy are orange tree flowers, white lilies, and white, pink and yellow roses. • Chrysanthemums are strictly for mourning and funerals • No full bouquets of “rose rosse” – red roses imply secrecy. Add a single blue rose to the mix.

Orto Botanico, Catania, Sicily Home to the University of Catania’s Botany Department, these horticultural gardens span over three acres. The 18th century structure places emphasis on palms, succulent fauna, plants of Sicilian origin and exotic plants. Thousands of specimens are grown outdoors thanks to Sicily’s mild climate.

Palazzo Reale La Reggia, Caserta, Campania Considered by many as the Italian Versailles, the Reggia di Caserta calls for at least a half day’s visit. This duration is necessary in order to cover the castle’s massive English Garden, aka the “backyard.” It was designed by Andrew Graefer, one of the English court’s most famous gardeners, who constructed greenhouses to store plant seeds from his travels through Capri, Salerno and Palermo. Orchids, camellias, roses, peonies, brooms and convolvulus can be found throughout the cultivated parts of the gardens while dreamy water lilies float in the fountains and ponds.


CUSTOM DESIGNING FOR ALL OCCASIONS specializing in: fresh cut flowers, bridal design, funerals, baby gifts, gourmet baskets, green plants

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The Garden and Ruins of Ninfa, Lazio The site of the “Nymph’s” garden and ruins was a strategic position in the time of the Romans. The garden has 19 varieties of flowering trees such as deciduous magnolias, water irises, ornamental tree tulips and Japanese cherry blossom trees that bloom spectacularly in spring. Different types of roses drape the trees and run across the castle ruins, a sight that makes for a storybook atmosphere.

Villa Borghese, Lazio Rome’s version of Central Park is a must-see when in the Italian capital for its mix of greenery, statues and the stately villas of long ago. The Flower Garden is an exquisitely laid out English Garden.

Giusti Gardens, Veneto Mozart and Goethe praised it, Emperors once sprawled out across it … Giusti is arguably one of the best. Designed by Agostino Giusti in the 16th century to accompany his Villa in Verona, it is characterized by rows and rows of column cypress trees, clipped hedges, terraces dotted with marble sculptures and a dreamy grotto. Giusti Garden is divided into three sections: a lawn, a wooded hill and a ravine and cliff with a ‘belvedere’ lookout point.

Villa Poggio Torselli, Tuscany Located just outside of Florence, the Seasons’ Garden at Villa Poggio Torselli is in full bloom come April. Narcissus, tulips, hyacinths, dahlias, sage, giant Indian hibiscus and an orange tuft of bell-shaped flowers known as the “Crown Imperial ,” are all on display, encircled by over 100 lemon trees.

Villa Serbelloni Garden, Lake Como, Lombardy

Castello di Pralormo, Piedmont Host of the famous Messer Tulipano Festival (Mister Tulip), the Pralormo Castle is located on the cusp of the hills of Monferrato in the Langhe Roero. 2013 marks Messer Tulipano’s 14th edition, runs until May 1, where a slew of multicoloured tulips, buttercups and precious orchids are on show as well as food and wine tastings, a market, a cake design competition and other exciting events. Also of note in the Piedmont region are the numerous sunflower fields and the exquisite Reggia di Venaria Reale Garden (20 minutes away).

No Italian springtime is complete without a stop on Lake Como, which DaVinci himself once testified to by saying: “these trips should be made in the month of May.” Our personal coastal favourite is the luxe town of Bellagio, home to the 5-star Villa Serbelloni Hotel and its lush botanical gardens. The formal section of the 20acre garden was constructed in the 18th century and boasts topiary flowers and shrubs. Spend the night at the hotel where the likes of JFK, Clark Gable and Winston Churchill once did.

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By Francesca Spizzirri

Rent a villa. If you are staying for a few weeks, consider renting a villa. It’s more

Planning a trip to Italy can be one of the most exciting times, but with so much to see and do it’s easy to feel overwhelmed. Here are some tried and true travel tips to ensure you get the most out of your Italian adventure.

affordable than a hotel and allows you to live like a local.

WORDS OF WISDOM Be present. The best advice for any trip is to be present! Don’t spend all your time with a gadget in your hands or overthinking things; be fully present in the moment, especially when wandering through Italy because you will discover that much of the character and charm of this country is found among its people and its streets. Eat where locals eat. Italy is a culinary wonderland with a plethora of flavours to be enjoyed in its food and wine. Try to avoid tourist traps by asking locals where they eat and go enjoy a great meal, but don’t eat to the point where you feel sick or heavy. You want to feel ready to take on the day’s adventures.

Find time to relax. After all, Italians are the ones who invented the term “Dolce Far Niente,” which means “the sweetness of doing nothing.” Enjoy long leisurely meals, evening strolls, and find a great café to sit and enjoy an aperitivo or good wine. Take time to soak in the atmosphere and savour its beauty. Get off the beaten path. There is no harm in knowing what things you’d like to see or do, but speak to locals and find out what they also recommend and set off on your own adventure. This allows you to immerse yourself in the culture and have a more authentic experience. Don’t over pack. The last thing you want is to waste time unpacking, re-organizing and lugging stuff around, especially if you are travelling around Italy and getting on and off trains. If you forget something, don’t worry, you can buy it in Italy!

Stay at an agriturismo. Experience the real Italy on a rustic farmhouse where you can eat, drink, relax and stroll through the Italian countryside. Know how to order coffee. In Italy, going to the local bar

for caffè (kah-FE) is a national pastime; while there, you should take part in this ritual too. There are many popular coffee drinks served in Italian bars, so try to familiarize yourself with them. And remember, Italians never order cappuccino after 11am! Enjoy an aperitivo. Early evening is the perfect time to go enjoy a drink. Bars, cafés and enotecas, usually serve free snacks and finger foods along with your drink. This is also a great opportunity to mingle with locals who stop for an aperitivo after a day’s work.

Tipping. Tips are not common practice in Italy as service is usually included in the price. This charge is referred to as a “coperto” and you will usually see this additional charge on most restaurant bills. It generally is about 2/3 Euro per person. However, you are always welcome to leave an additional tip for great service. Some cafés also charge two different prices; one for ordering and consuming at the bar, and another for sitting down at a table.

Siesta time. The majority of Italian cities become deserted from 1 pm to 4 pm when they close for their afternoon “siesta” break. Less so in Rome and Milan yet still pretty frequent across the country, so be sure to keep this in mind each day. Also note that most stores are closed on Sunday.

TRANSPORTATION Take the train. The perfect way to sit back and enjoy Italy’s ever changing landscapes. Make sure to buy your tickets in advance and reserve a seat, especially if you are travelling during the peak seasons of Christmas, Easter or summer. Save time buying your tickets through the train station self-service machines or pre-book online before leaving if you know your travel dates. Travel by bus. If you travel by bus make sure you have the right schedule and that you reserved your seat; otherwise, if the bus gets full they may ask you to get out of the bus to leave room to those that reserved their seats.

Leave room in your luggage. Italy is home to some of the world’s most prominent fashion houses so don’t be surprised if you end up going home with an additional suitcase or bag filled with shoes, scarves, jewellery, purses and clothing. It happens all the time, even to those who set out with the best of intentions.

Book in advance. There are many different companies and it can become

Don’t look like a tourist. Keep your money and valuables in a safe place out

confusing. Use local travel agencies to make sure you buy your tickets in advance if you are in a remote place. It is also helpful to discuss this with your local travel agent.

of reach from pickpockets, especially when you’re in tight, crowded spaces.

Double check schedules. Keep in mind that schedules change on Sunday and Don’t try to see or do too much. There really is so much to see and do in Italy. Rather than visiting 10 cities in a rushed amount of time, choose a few and split your time between them.

that trains and buses are less frequent, so double check schedule information before heading to the terminals.

Rent a car. Driving is a great way to get around Italy, but note that automatic cars Walk a lot. The best way to explore Italy is by foot, so make sure to pack comfortable shoes. Between the walking and cobblestoned streets, stilettos are not recommended footwear. Set off and don’t worry about getting lost. Some of the best things you’ll discover will probably be by accident.

are rare in Europe so learn how to drive standard. You can rent automatic cars but know that they cost more to rent. Also, Italians love to drive fast and shall we say a little crazy, so you need to be extra cautious when driving in Italy.

Try every flavour of gelato. Eating Italian gelato is


one of the greatest pleasures you will experience in Italy, so enjoy lots of it!

Credit cards. Credit card payments are less frequent in smaller Italian cities and


local stores, so be sure to always have cash on hand for smaller purchases. It is also a good idea to contact your credit card company prior to leaving to let them know when and where you will be travelling so they can put a note on your account. This will avoid any issues when you make a payment overseas.

Travel voltage converter. Bring a voltage converter so you can recharge your

Interac. Many of the larger stores now take Interac payments. You can also with-

electronic equipment, i.e., iPhone, cell phones, laptop, blow dryers, etc.

draw cash from your bank account through most instant teller machines, but speak to your local branch ahead of time for more information.

Wi-Fi. Put your smart phones on airplane mode and connect to the Internet using local networks. Hotels usually provide you with a password for free wi-fi and some cafés also offer it. This way you can post all your Instagram and Facebook pictures for free, or browse Trenitalia’s website to schedule your next train ride.

Pre-order Euro. Local currency shops and credit cards usually charge a higher exchange rate than the bank, so it’s a good idea to pre-order Euro from your local Canadian bank before travelling.

Travel apps. Another great idea is to download useful travel apps before your trip.

Psychology 101. The exchange rate is more or less .75 Euro for a dollar. This makes a big difference when you pay your hotel bill or buy expensive clothes, so keep this in mind when making larger purchases.

Apps like Free Wi-Fi Finder, Kayak, FlightTrack Pro, and Around Me can save you lots of time and money when travelling.

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Appuntamento con la cultura

Fabio Forlano

Con “Maggio dei Monumenti” la città riscopre le sue bellezze più nascoste. E quest’anno c’è spazio anche per il Giro d’Italia e l’America’s Cup. apoli e il mese di maggio hanno un rapporto particolare. Come due innamorati aspettano ogni anno il momento giusto, quello in cui fioriscono le rose, per riabbracciarsi e godersi insieme le belle giornate di primavera. E proprio questo è il concetto che ha ispirato il poeta Salvatore Di Giacomo a scrivere i versi di “Era de maggio”, la più bella canzone della tradizione partenopea. Con l’arrivo della primavera, infatti, la città sembra togliersi di dosso tutte le ombre e le paure che la attanagliano da sempre. E si mostra, nel suo splendore, ai turisti che la omaggiano. Anche per questo a Napoli, da diciannove anni, viene organizzato il Maggio dei Monumenti: un contenitore di eventi e visite guidate alla scoperta dei tesori, più o meno noti, del capoluogo campano.


LA RASSEGNA Maggio dei Monumenti è il più importante evento dell’anno culturale di Napoli. Il programma, solitamente ricco di appuntamenti, tocca tutti i quartieri della città: dall’archeologia naturalistica della ricca Posillipo fino ai tesori religiosi della periferica Marianella, passando per i vicoli della Sanità e per la Reggia di Capodimonte. Il cuore pulsante di ogni attività, tuttavia, resta il centro storico, riconosciuto Patrimonio dell’Umanità dall’Unesco.

IL MESE DEI NAPOLETANI L’appuntamento Maggio dei Monumenti è particolarmente apprezzato da chi a Napoli ci vive e da Napoli non si vorrebbe mai separare. La città, infatti, custodisce gelosamente molti tesori di grande valore artistico. Ma la gran parte dei napoletani non ha opportunità di ammirarli se non durante le visite guidate organizzate in questo periodo. E così agli eventi fissati nelle quattro o cinque settimane di calendario della rassegna, i primi turisti a mettersi in coda sono proprio i napoletani.

DA NON PERDERE Per chi invece a Napoli ci arriva da turista vero, il consiglio è di non rinunciare ai luoghi emblematici della città. Castel dell’Ovo, il Lungomare e Piazza Plebiscito sono


praticamente imperdibili. Chi ha qualche ora in più, tuttavia, può scegliere delle mete più nascoste ma non per questo meno suggestive. Primo fra tutti: il Teatro romano di Neapolis. La struttura è completamente inglobata dai palazzi antichi del centro storico e l’accesso, cosa più unica che rara, avviene da una casa di vico Cinquesanti che solo da pochi anni è stata liberata e adibita a ingresso. A pochi metri di distanza, invece, nella Cappella Sansevero viene conservata la statua del Cristo velato, scolpita da Giuseppe Sanmartino nel 1753. La bellezza dell’opera è sconvolgente e solo ammirandola da vicino se ne può comprendere appieno la complessità. Chi passeggia per i vicoli del centro, infine, ha la possibilità di ammirare uno dei chiostri più belli d’Italia: il chiostro delle Clarisse della Basilica di Santa Chiara. Caratteristica principale sono le maioliche, applicate durante la ristrutturazione del 1739, che ritraggono paesaggi e scene mitologiche.

IN CUCINA Una visita al centro storico non può definirsi tale se non prevede una sosta in una delle pizzerie storiche di via dei Tribunali. La pizza a Napoli è una divinità e, in un normale giorno infrasettimanale, può capitare anche di dover aspettare due ore prima di sedersi al tavolo di uno dei locali più rinomati. Ma un’attesa così lunga è giustificabile, fa parte del bagaglio di sensazioni ed emozioni che la città riesce ancora a regalare ai suoi visitatori.

IL GIRO D’ITALIA Per gli amanti delle competizioni sportive, il maggio napoletano ha in serbo una bella sorpresa. Esattamente cinquant’anni dopo, il Giro d’Italia ripartirà dal capoluogo campano. E lo farà con una tappa breve da Piazza Plebiscito fino al Lungomare. L’appuntamento con i campioni delle due ruote è per il giorno 4, ma la carovana rosa arriverà in città già qualche giorno prima e traslocherà solo dopo la prova a cronometro che si disputerà il 5 sull’isola di Ischia. La corsa alla maglia rosa, dunque, riparte simbolicamente da uno dei centri italiani dove l’uso della bicicletta è più limitato e dove i chilometri di piste ciclabili sono veramente scarsi.

IN BARCA A VELA Qualche giorno prima del Giro, il tratto di mare antistante la Villa Comunale sarà teatro delle World Series di America’s Cup. Dopo il successo dello scorso anno, con circa 500 mila presenze a battezzare le prime vittorie di Luna Rossa, gli organizzatori della manifestazione velistica hanno scelto ancora Napoli come unica tappa europea del loro tour. L’appuntamento è dal 16 al 21 aprile proprio davanti al Castel dell’Ovo.


Venice in Vegas

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By Sarah Mastroianni

Travelers don’t usually associate charming Italy with the bright lights of Las Vegas, but The Venetian Resort-Hotel-Casino succeeds in being the perfect pairing of Sin City and La Serenissima. ituated in the middle of the hustle and bustle of Las Vegas Boulevard, the 1.5 billion dollar complex is considered one of the largest and most luxurious resorts in the world. Rising 36 stories above the strip and boasting more than 3,000 elegantly furnished hotel suites, The Venetian, along with its equally impressive sister resort, The Palazzo, occupy an unmistakable spot in the Vegas skyline. It was while honeymooning in Venice with his wife Miriam that inspiration struck Sheldon Adelson, CEO of the Las Vegas Sands Corporation, the company that owns The Venetian. Naturally, the couple was enchanted by Venice’s romantic atmosphere, and Adelson was moved to combine the romance of Venice with the luxuries of Vegas in a new project. Construction on The Venetian began in 1997 and was completed in 1999, bringing a fairly authentic slice of Italy to the heart of the desert. Visitors to The Venetian would be hard-pressed not to note the attention to detail and elegance with which designers recreated one of the world’s most famous cities. “Even before a guest enters the lobby at The Venetian, they are greeted with landmarks of Venice, including Doge’s Palace, the Rialto Bridge, and the Campanile Tower,” said John Caparella, President and Chief Operating Officer of The Venetian and The Palazzo. Additionally, Piazza San Marco and the Grand Canal were recreated inside for guests to enjoy in any weather. As was done in Venice centuries earlier, Italian artists were commissioned to hand paint the many vividly coloured frescoes that adorn the hotel ceilings. Naturally, Italy wouldn’t be Italy without a majestic fountain or two, but at The Venetian, coins tossed into the fountains are collected periodically and donated to the Dr. Miriam and Sheldon G. Adelson Clinic for Drug Abuse Treatment and Research. Designers managed to get it right, all the way down to the finest details: the winged Lion of St. Mark keeping watch from above; classical musicians’ evocative melodies flooding Piazza San Marco at night; a striped-shirted staff of singing gondoliers ready to accompany guests on a (motorized) gondola ride down the Grand Canal. While some of the stone used in the construction of the resort was imported from Italy, the gondolas were not. A team of designers did travel to Venice to research the design of traditional gondolas, but the ones in use at The Venetian are made on site, and are slightly smaller than their Italian counterparts. While guests could spend their time simply marvelling at The Venetian’s architecture just as they would in Venice itself, no hotel in Vegas is complete without a casi-


no. And while the hotel’s casino isn’t as Italian feeling as it could be, it’s alive with all the noise, excitement, and cigarette smoke of a traditional Vegas gambling establishment. With slots, craps and a poker room that spans more than 100,000 square feet, guests can try their luck at any number of games of chance in any price range. Lacking in Italian-style entertainment, The Venetian does welcome big name acts like country superstars Faith Hill and Tim McGraw and comedians Tim Allen and David Spade. Themed events, such as Winter in Venice and Carnevale take place over the Christmas and summer seasons respectively and offer discounted prices for many of The Venetian’s restaurants and boutiques. Speaking of shops, high-end boutiques spill into the piazza and line the canal, satisfying guests’ every consumer need, while world-renowned chefs prepare savoury dishes in The Venetian’s 16 upscale restaurants. “Our team members strive to provide a level of service that reflects the warm and comforting feeling of Italy, something that has helped us to attain our five-diamond status,” said Caparella. Of course, for guests wishing to somewhat save their wallets but still satisfy their stomachs, the resort is also home to a number of more casual places to grab a bite, sip a coffee and of course, indulge in a gelato. While not all of the dining establishments serve Italian cuisine (some are Asian, American or French), there is still ample pasta and Prosecco to go around and take the Venice-inspired Italian experience all the way to the taste buds.

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B R ook


Finding Marco By Kenneth C. Cancellara Published by Synergy Books Between the covers of Kenneth C. Cancellara’s debut novel, Finding Marco, readers are presented with the story of Italian-born Mark (Marco) Gentile, a driven and successful Toronto lawyer-turned-CEO. For years Mark enjoys satisfaction in his chosen career, but when a corporate adversary attempts to force him to make an unethical business decision, Mark, now in his late fifties, makes the decision to close the door to his corner office. Leaving his wife and daughter in Toronto, Mark returns to his birthplace, the idyllic southern Italian town of Acerenza, to rediscover his roots and re-evaluate his priorities. During his stay in Italy, Mark reconnects with old friends and begins to gain a deeper appreciation for the place and lifestyle he left behind. After months of reflection, Mark is finally able to step back into the corporate world, this time determined not to lose sight of what is truly important to him. While the story idea behind Finding Marco will resonate profoundly with many readers, Cancellara’s businesslike writing style is difficult to appreciate. The eighty-five pages that make up Part 1 of the book recount in unnecessary detail the protagonist’s career, with scarcely a nod to his family or birthplace. Much of the book reads more like a legal textbook than a novel, with the dialogue sounding unnatural to the average reader. The tone of the book lightens somewhat in Parts 2 and 3, as they deal with Mark’s return to Italy and subsequent life decisions, however readers should be aware that Finding Marco is not a light read. (Sarah Mastroianni)

The Shoemaker’s Wife By Adriana Trigiani Published by Harper Collins Echoing the lives of many twentieth-century Italian immigrants working towards the “American dream,” The Shoemaker’s Wife tells the story of two Italian families through the characters of Enza, the eldest daughter of a poor family living in Schilpario, and Ciro, a boy living with his brother and the sisters of San Nicola’s convent in Vilminore. As the setting shifts from the serene Italian Alps to crowded New York City, this 2012 novel explores how love can transcend time and wait out all of life’s obstacles. Although Enza and Ciro only meet once at the age of 15, their lives constantly intersect as they experience the hardships of family, sorrow, and ultimately love. In the midst of World War I and the rise of the Metropolitan Opera, Enza and Ciro must confront their own responsibilities before choosing between the only life they’ve known and the one they’ve been waiting to make together. For Italian readers, this novel will take you back to the stories your parents, grandparents, or even great-grandparents have repeatedly told about their journeys from Italy to North America. For the non-Italians, you will be able to transcend into a part of Italian culture that so many share, while also picking up some Italian vocabulary sporadically placed within chapters. From Northern Italy to Chisholm, Minnesota, Enza’s and Ciro’s stories are tributes to many Italian immigrants’ histories that undoubtedly required strength, perseverance, and an irrevocable tie to their native land. (Stephanie Grella)


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Italians and the Art of

By Salvatore Difalco


Google the three-word phrase “Concrete Italian Toronto” and a staggering 197,000,000 results turn up. That’s right, almost two hundred million. Among the results are countless concrete and mortar specialists in the GTA of Italian origins, and prominent from this group is the massive DeGasperis holdings, including Metrus Developments, and ConDrain. To say Italians have been instrumental in building Toronto into a world class metropolis with world class slabs of concrete may understate the case but what is it with Italians and concrete? o we credit the Ancient Romans for this cultural inheritance (or stereotype)? While the Romans didn’t invent opus caementicium (in Syria, archaeologists unearthed a form of concrete dating to 6500 B.C.) they refined it with the powerful binding agent pozzolona, a volcanic dust found near Pozzouli by the Bay of Naples, and used it more inventively and thoroughly than anyone before them. A quick list of Roman triumphs in concrete include the ubiquitous Aqueducts, still standing in many corners of the Empire, the Amphitheater of Pompeii, the Roman Baths, the Colosseum, and the Pantheon. Professor Frank Vecchio of the University of Toronto Civil Engineering Department, and an expert in the analysis and design of reinforced concrete structures, chuckles at the notion of an Italian genetic propensity for concrete. “No,” he says, “it's not in the blood. I think you’ll find it's a local phenomenon, not necessarily true in other North American cities. Toronto has a huge Italian immigrant population. Like my father who immigrated here in the 1950s (from Frosinone) they ended up in the construction business mostly as labourers mixing and finishing concrete. In fact, there's been a recent shift and you're getting more and more Portuguese and other immigrants in the business.” While it's true the Romans used concrete to construct everything from building foundations and terraces to harbour structures (it could set under water), after the fall of the Empire the art of concrete was all but lost. For the next 1300 years most concrete construction used inferior lime-based mortars and mixes. Concrete as a building material reappears before 1900, but its full development takes place afterward with Italians playing a qualified, though not predominant, role. Reinforced by steel, concrete made a comeback in the 20th Century as the building material of choice for rapidly growing urban areas worldwide. “During the post-World War II boom in North America,” says Professor Vecchio, “reinforced concrete was the most cost-effective building material. And then steel became more attractive. But in the 1980s, perhaps accelerated by the boom in China, which was buying up lots of steel, concrete was in again. And you'll see it shift back and forth, depending on cost, with higher structures demanding more steel.”


Professor Vecchio concedes that although concrete forms shapes easily compared to structural steel, “It can be imposing and cold.” And for all its flexibility and advantages, concrete has another defect: once the formwork is removed, an ugly surface shows, a flaw that detractors of concrete highlight. Yet the poured board-marked concrete look has its fans, and even spawned an architectural movement in the 1950s, brutalism (from the French béton brut, “raw concrete,” first coined by Le Corbusier), which embraced the rough finishes and blocky contours of concrete construction, but was also criticized for totalitarian overtones, and for offering an open canvas to vandalizing graffiti artists. Robarts Library, at the University of Toronto, stands as a curious late incarnation of the style, thus far spared molesting graphics. “True, not everyone loves concrete,” Professor Vecchio agrees. “But New City Hall with its curves and dome is a fine example of what you can do with concrete. And some of the most beautiful bridges in the world like the Salginatobel in Switzerland are made of reinforced concrete.” Love it or hate it, concrete is integral to modern urban life, both as infrastructure and surface, and Toronto, like most modern cities, would be unthinkable without it. While in the past Torontonians bemoaned the loss of the city’s quaint Victorian heritage, self-conscious about the concrete aesthetic of their city (justifiably, for that monstrosity, the Gardiner Expressway), at one time concrete was the perfect medium to mould Toronto into a city of the future, permitting bold new shapes and forms without prohibitive price-tags. Unfortunately, the new glass and steel condominiums blighting Toronto’s shoreline offer locals and tourists a flimsier, more ephemeral aesthetic altogether. At least concrete gave Toronto two of its few architectural icons: the CN Tower and New City Hall. The CN Tower, that veritable monument to concrete, contains 40,538 cubic metres (53,000 cubic yards) of the stuff. 1,537 people worked around the clock for 40 months to pour it and raise it inch by inch. One can only estimate how many hands of Italian origin put their touch to it. And one can only wonder, gazing at this flaky, concrete titan of Toronto’s skyline, if it will last two millennia.

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Musica Italiana Panoram Italia’s Picks

Undoubtedly one of the greatest divas of all time, Liza Minnelli has conquered audiences worldwide and shows no signs of stopping. Daughter to actress-singer Judy Garland and film director Vincente Minnelli, her journey to becoming a superstar began when she was sixteen. Her impressive career has earned her four Tony Awards, an Oscar, a special “Legends” Grammy and many more recognitions. The Liza Minnelli Anthology is a dual CD compilation featuring Liza interpreting some of the biggest cabaret and jazz classics like “Cabaret” (live), “Oh Babe What Would You Say”, “Son of a Preacher Man” and “New York, New York.”

Malika Ayane Album: Ricreazione (2012) Label: Sugar s.r.l. Genre: Traditional pop Italian-Moroccan singer Malika Ayane is one of the newest additions to Italy’s music charts courtesy of her single “Tre Cose.” The song is from Ricreazione, her recently released third studio album, Ayane’s first self-production. Among the well-known collaborators on this record are Caterina Caselli, Pacifico, Giuliano Sangiorgi (lead singer of Negramaro), Paolo Conte and Ferdinando Arnò, with whom Ayane co-wrote “Briciole” and “Il giardino dei Salici.” Ricreazione evokes a feeling of celebration through a variety of sounds from the pop-folk tradition, not to mention the album cover with guests gathered around the dinner table in a rural setting. Loredana Bertè Album: Decisamente Loredana (1998) Label: Sony Music Genre: Pop-Rock Loredana Bertè’s music career kicked off when she decided to move from Reggio Calabria to Rome to follow in her older sister’s footsteps - the late Mia Martini. She made her first appearances in musicals such as “Hair,” “Ciao Rudy” and the first Italian rock-opera production “Orfeo 9” in 1973. Decisamente Loredana is a live recording of some of her most successful hits, including the fan-favourite reggae-rap tune “E La Luna Bussò” as well as “Il Mare d’Inverno,” “Sei Bellisima” and “In Alto Mare,” featuring Renato Zero. Her stage presence characterized by extensive make-up, unconventional hairdos and eccentric outfits, combined with remarkable interpretative skills and a powerful voice, have made her one of Italy’s most iconic singers.

By Sonia Benedetto

The Liza Minnelli Anthology Album: Cabaret…And All That Jazz (2010) Label: Salvo Genre: Cabaret-Jazz-Musical

Eros Ramazzotti Album: Noi (2012) Label: Universal Music Italia Genre: Pop In less than two months after its release, Noi, Eros Ramazzotti’s latest album, sold over 500,000 copies worldwide. Preceded by the highly anticipated single “Un Angelo Disteso al Sole”, Noi is Ramazzotti’s first studio album with Universal Music, simultaneously releasing a Spanish version named Somos. “Fino All’Estasi” features Nicole Scherzinger (Pussycat Dolls), Italian rap group Club Dogo appear in “Testa o Cuore,” Il Volo join Ramazzotti on the track “Così”, and the list goes on. The NOI World Tour 2013 kicked off in March.


Francesco De Gregori Album: Sulla Strada (2012) Label: Serraglio Edizioni Musicali Genre: Pop-Rock-Folk Produced by Guido Guglielminetti, Sulla Strada is singer-songwriter Francesco De Gregori’s 20th studio album. It features nine new songs and is considered one of the best records from this iconic figure of the 1970s. Also known as "Il Principe dei cantautori," his lyrics continue to be truly inspirational as he boldly shares his feelings about some of the most emotional aspects of his life. Sulla Strada is filled with various influences with songs such as "Passo D’uomo" and "Guarda Che Non Sono Io,” both enriched by the sounds of string instruments (directed by Nicola Piovani), "Omero al Cantagiro" and "Ragazza del 95" featuring Malika Ayane’s soft Latin rhythms. Nomadi Album: Terzo Tempo (2012) Label: Segnali Caotici Genre: Pop-Rock Terzo Tempo is Nomadi’s 35th studio album. The legendary Italian band’s latest release features 10 songs including the single “Ancora Ci Sei.” Founded by Beppe Carletti and Augusto Daolio in the 1960s, the group has produced numerous hit songs such as “Noi Non Ci Saremo,” “Io Vagabondo,” “Auschwitz” and “Dio È Morto.” This project also marks the beginning of a new chapter as they introduce their newest member, singer Cristiano Turano. Energetic and fresh, Terzo Tempo reflects the band’s signature sound and repertoire with songs about social commitment.



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E se le università italiane parlassero inglese? Nicoletta Maraschio, presidente dell'Accademia della Crusca: “C'è il rischio che l'italiano diventi un dialetto” Letizia Tesi

Do you speak English? If you don’t, I’m sorry. You’re out. Tagliato fuori da una delle più prestigiose facoltà italiane, il Politecnico di Milano, che dall’inizio del prossimo anno accademico parlerà solo inglese per i corsi magistrali e per il dottorato. o ha annunciato il rettore, Giovanni Azzone, scatenando una polemica che non si è ancora placata. Da una parte i promotori dell’“internazionalizzazione” delle accademie italiane, dall’altra i sostenitori “pro lingua nostra”. In mezzo, in una posizione neutra, si è messa l’istituzione più importante e storicamente prestigiosa per la valorizzazione e la promozione dell’italiano, l’Accademia della Crusca, che sull’argomento ha organizzato una tavola rotonda dalla quale è nato un libro, uscito pochi mesi fa per i tipi di Laterza, “Fuori l’italiano dalle università?”. Il volume, a cura della presidente della Crusca, Nicoletta Maraschio, e del filologo Domenico De Martino, contiene oltre un centinaio di interventi di accademici, scienziati, scrittori e linguisti, non solo italiani, pro e contro l’anglicizzazione accademica. Fra gli oppositori non poteva mancare il nome del linguista Tullio De Mauro, che parla di “una bizzarra fuga in avanti che crea problemi” non solo ai docenti, ma “più ancora allo studio, alla cultura e ai destini professionali degli studenti”. Lo scrittore Claudio Magris ironizza definendo la proposta di Azzone “una gag, ovvero Tu vo’ fa’ l’americano”. L’opposizione è molto forte anche all’interno del Politecnico stesso, dove la proposta non ha riscosso l’unanimità. Un gruppo di docenti ha fatto ricorso al Tar, appellandosi a un Regio Decreto del 1933, ancora in vigore, che dispone che l’italiano sia la lingua ufficiale dell’insegnamento e degli esami nelle università.


Join the discussion!

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A rts Panoram Italia: Professoressa Maraschio, qual è il rischio che corre la lingua italiana se le università cominciassero a parlare inglese? Nicoletta Maraschio: Se una

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PI: Un’altra critica rivolta alla proposta di Azzone è che la lingua trasmessa ai ragazzi da professori non anglofoni possa essere un inglese “povero”. NM: Il rischio è che sia un inglese inadeguato e di base e le lezioni universitarie, si sa, non devono essere fatte in una lingua che non si possiede appieno.

PI: Nel libro ci sono anche interventi di docenti stranieri o di professori italiani che lavorano all’estero, fra i quali anche Domenico Pietropaolo e Franco Pierno dell’Università di Toronto. Che messaggio è arrivato dall’estero? NM: Ai colleghi che lavorano fuori dall’Italia la proposta di insegnare solo in inglese

lingua perde le sue funzioni superiori, cioè quelle dell’elaborazione scientifica e della formazione superiore nelle università, il rischio di decadenza, e quindi quello di diventare un dialetto, è alto.

sembra ancora più assurda. Loro, che tanto s’impegnano per sostenere la promozione della lingua italiana all’estero, non possono credere che proprio in Italia si decida di andare nella direzione opposta.

PI: Con la pubblicazione del volume “Fuori l’italiano dalle università?”, che obiettivo si è posta l’Accademia della Crusca? NM: Non vogliamo che la proposta del Politecnico venga presentata come una scelta d’avanguardia. Al contrario è una scelta di retroguardia. La Crusca è impegnatissima per il multilinguismo in Europa. Siamo consapevoli che solo potenziando il plurilinguismo individuale, l’Europa potrà diventare davvero il terreno della valorizzazione della diversità linguistica. Se, però, si punta solo sull’inglese, e quindi su una “super-lingua” che schiaccia quelle nazionali, si rischia molto.

PI: Che cos’è che fa più paura di questa proposta? NM: L’esclusività. La scelta andrebbe bene. PI: Linguisti come De Mauro e Serianni hanno detto che imporre la scelta anglofona rischia di avere effetti negativi anche sull’intelligenza e di causare una regressione cognitiva. È d’accordo? NM: Certo, il rapporto fra lingua e pensiero è stretto. È naturale che l’elaborazione concettuale avvenga nella lingua materna. C’è il rischio di fare lezioni manualistiche solo per trasmettere dei contenuti e non per elaborare insieme dei concetti. È necessario, quindi, investire di più nella ricerca, nella mobilità degli studenti, nelle lauree gemellate o nei dottorati internazionali. Imporre l’esclusività dell’insegnamento in inglese è solo una cartolina e alla fine rischia di diventare una questione d’immagine.



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Toronto APRIL-MAY 49-64_Layout 1 13-03-26 11:25 AM Page 52

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love affair

By Stephanie Grella

From romantic Verona in Romeo and Juliet to historical Venice in Othello, 10 of William Shakespeare’s classic plays were set in “il bel paese” during the Italian Renaissance. Francesco da Mosto, the host of the 2012 BBC documentary series Shakespeare in Italy, pointedly tells viewers, “It was Shakespeare, rather than generations of gondoliers, who first established Italy as the land of love.” So why did the great Bard of England choose Italy as the setting and inspiration for so many of his plays? The mystery of Shakespeare’s infatuation with Italian culture has attracted readers and critics alike for the past four centuries and remains a hotly contested debate today. edicated Shakespeareans continue to investigate the legendary playwright’s European travels with hopes of finding an explanation. Richard Paul Roe, author of Shakespeare’s Guide to Italy, spent 20 years travelling across Italy tracing the playwright’s steps. Sadly, Roe passed away before his book was published. His daughter Hilary Roe Metternich, who assisted him with the book’s preparations, describes her father’s two-decade project as his baby — loving the challenge and discovery of the entire process. “My father was enthralled in this topic out of a sense of justice,” recalls Roe Metternich. “It appealed greatly to his unusual, creative mind.” The book closely looks at the cities featured in Shakespeare’s 10 plays: Venice, Verona, Milan, Padua, and Florence. After extensive research, Roe concluded that no playwright could describe Italian setting and culture so vividly (and accurately) without setting foot on the


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with il bel paese

country’s soil. According to Roe’s book, Shakespeare was an Italian traveller who astutely reflected his findings into his classic plays. “One can see, touch, feel, and smell the truth of what the characters in the Italian plays are made to say,” says Roe Metternich. “The facts speak loudly.” As for Italy’s influence on Shakespeare, Roe Metternich adds, “Italy was the centre of learning and culture. Historically, Italy has been responsible for 'civilizing' much of Europe. Which would you prefer: fog, beans, and bear-baiting, or sun, good food, and frescoes?” But not everyone buys the theory including Professor Michael J. Redmond who teaches at the University of Palermo in Italy and has authored Shakespeare, Politics, and Italy. He argues that Shakespeare never travelled to Italy, but instead read extensively about the country, just as other colleagues of his time would have had the opportunity to do. Redmond compares the importance of books as an information resource during the Renaissance to the Internet in the 21st century. “It is significant that, apart from the Italian stories and historical-political texts that inspired the plays of Shakespeare and his contemporaries, there are a number of dictionaries and grammar texts for English students of Italian,” says Redmond. “For Shakespeare, the Italian Renaissance was more thrilling because of its novelty.” Redmond has discovered many precedents for Shakespeare’s portrayal of Italian political intrigue in popular passages from Italian writers like Niccolò Machiavelli and Francesco Guicciardini. “When Shakespeare deals with things a traveller should know, like the fact that Milan is not a seaport, he gets it wrong,” adds Redmond. “I've seen performances of The Tempest here [Italy] where the directors have substituted Genoa for Milan.” Along with Redmond, Toby Malone, dramaturge and text editor at the Torontobased Driftwood Theatre Group, rejects the theory that Shakespeare ever travelled to Italy. Malone notes the lack of evidence proving that Shakespeare had ever set foot in il bel paese, and instead, he suggests that the Bard’s plays are more reflective of England’s society at the time, not Italy’s. “What’s important to remember was that

Shakespeare was writing in an era where the theatre was seen as immoral by many, so his plays, while set in far-off places, actually commented on Shakespeare’s own society,” says Malone. “Really, in many of the plays, none of the characters are all that Italian. They use English phrases, would have worn contemporary London fashion, and were speaking about things that concerned the English.” Despite the various debates about the legendary playwright, he has kept our attention for over 400 years (and counting). One common opinion many critics share is Italy’s universal appeal from the Early Modern period to the 21st century. “Shakespeare was attracted to Italy for the same reasons that still fascinate us today: its significant advances in art, literature, and political thought, along with a turbulent and exotic history,” says Redmond.

Above: Toby Malone Left: Professor Michael Redmond

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Giuseppe Continiello

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e il suo amore per gli animali

Sullo sfondo del mito è difficile delineare la realtà, la particolarità di un personaggio. La realtà e gli strumenti per riconoscerla lo riconducono nel “sacro recinto” della storia e lo rendono vero e umano, con i suoi molteplici pregi e i suoi piccoli e grandi difetti.

’è un piccolo episodio nella vita di Giuseppe Garibaldi al quale lui stesso ha attribuito un grande significato. Quell’episodio compare nelle sue Memorie. Lo racconta così: «Nulla di strano accadde nella mia gioventù. Avevo un cuore buono dono di Dio e di mia madre, provavo una profonda pietà per tutto ciò che era piccolo, debole e sofferente. Anche gli animali. Un giorno trovai un grillo e lo portai nella mia camera: toccandolo con una certa brutalità infantile gli spezzai una zampa: il mio dolore fu tale che piansi per molte ore». Come tutti i grandi spiriti che sono vissuti a cavallo di epoche diverse, registrando un passaggio di mentalità tra un’epoca e l’altra, anche Garibaldi era un personaggio contraddittorio. Spinto dalle circostanze e dalla necessità all’uso delle armi e alla guerra, si sentiva, tuttavia, dentro di sé uomo di pace. Così Garibaldi, che amava gli animali e la natura e di volta in volta trepidava per le loro sofferenze, di tanto in tanto, uniformandosi in questo alle consuetudini e alle tradizioni dell’epoca, si dedicava alla caccia. Questa pratica saltuaria può essere annoverata come una delle grandi incoerenze di un uomo essenzialmente coerente. Una delle piccole grandi ingiustizie di uno degli uomini che prima di tutti e più di tutti fu costantemente al servizio della giustizia. Del resto nelle sue Memorie non c’è un solo racconto nel quale egli si presenti come cacciatore che si inorgoglisce per le sue prede. Oggi sarebbe impossibile pensare a Garibaldi senza pensare a Caprera, un'isola fuori dal mondo, stupendamente bella. E qui bisogna raccontare la storia di un uomo che amò molte cose. E tra queste cose, oltre all'avventura, gli animali. E fu proprio lì che Garibaldi si riconciliò con la natura, dopo le grandi vicende del '60, dopo aver "proclamato Vittorio Emanuele re d'Italia", il "regale" regalo che lui, popolano e plebeo, si era permesso il lusso di fare ad un re. Da questa sensibilità e vero e proprio amore per la natura, che l’uomo mortificava, alterava, offendeva con l’uso smodato del potere e con le interminabili guerre, derivano le sue riflessioni sull’assoluta libertà degli animali allo stato di natura e la condizione di soggezione nella quale l’uomo viveva in alcune contingenze politiche. Regimi autoritari, dominazione e soggezione, colonialismi erano nella sua percezione e per la sua sensibilità essenzialmente aberrazioni nel mondo della natura. Garibaldi conosceva gli animali di Caprera uno per uno e finì per maturare nei loro confronti un’affezione e un amore profondo. Lì, mise in libertà i due cavalli utilizzati nella campagna del 1860, a lui, cavaliere-marinaio, così cari: Borbone e Marsala. Nella sua fattoria c’erano quattro asinelli trattati come “principi di sangue reale”. Garibaldi li aveva chiamati Oudinot, Napoleone III, Pio IX e Immacolata Concezione. Garibaldi aveva capito che quello del rapporto uomini e animali sarebbe stata una delle grandi questioni morali della sua epoca e delle epoche future. Iniziò allora a pensare che, così come aveva fatto nel campo degli uomini per cercare di estirpare la mala pianta dell’ingiustizia, dovesse fare qualcosa per combattere l’ingiustizia nei confronti degli animali, perché uomini e animali erano semi e rami dello stesso albero del bene e del male. C’era in lui questa disposizione di animo, quando Anna Winter gli scrisse per incitare lui, che nella vita aveva combattuto mille battaglie contro mille ingiustizie, a porsi alla testa del movimento animalista. Ci voleva uno straordinario coraggio per intraprendere una simile battaglia e a Garibaldi, il Leone di Caprera, il coraggio non mancava. Egli sentì che quell’amore e quel senso di fraternità verso gli esseri viventi, che aveva avvertito spontaneamente, istintivamente, doveva trasformarsi non in un’idea generosa e astratta, ma in fatto concreto. Così, prendendo a modello l’esem-


pio inglese, pensò di dar vita a un’associazione, avente come scopo la cura e la tutela degli animali afflitti dalla crudeltà dell’uomo. Convinto che fosse importante agire in tale direzione, incoraggiato dalle parole e dall’iniziativa di Anna Winter, inviò all’uomo di cui allora si fidava di più: Timoteo Riboli (medico, garibaldino, uomo di studi e di cuore, esperto di problemi medici e anche veterinari, ex comandante del servizio delle ambulanze dell’Armata dei Volgi) la lettera di Anna Winter, accompagnandola con la preghiera di istituire la Società per la protezione degli animali «annoverando la Signora come Presidente e lui stesso come socio». Era questa la prima pietra di un edificio al quale Garibaldi contribuiva con la presidenza morale. Grazie all’attività svolta da Riboli nacquero comitati in tutte le principali città italiane e poi si federarono tra loro. Accanto alle attività di tutela degli animali, soprattutto contro i maltrattamenti e le sevizie loro inferte dai conduttori, Riboli, con i suoi collaboratori, iniziò a organizzare dei corsi di educazione rivolti soprattutto agli studenti delle scuole di ogni ordine e grado. Garibaldi, maestro in materia di proclami, riponendo il problema degli animali, rilanciava e attualizzava la campagna contro i retrogradi, parlando non più dei Mille, ma di “Milleuno”, numero nel quale dovevano essere computati anche gli animali.


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The Narrative Fiction of Giovanni Boccaccio

From left: Prof. Francesco Guardiani, University of Toronto; Prof. Filippo Salvatore, Concordia University, Montreal and Editor-in-chief of Panoram Italia Magazine; and Prof. Salvatore Bancheri, Chair of the Department of Italian Studies, University of Toronto and Chief organizer of the international conference on Boccaccio.

Although 14th century Italian literature may not be on the top of the bestseller lists, the works of the famed Italian author and poet Giovanni Boccaccio took centre stage at a conference that was held between February 28 and March 2 at the University of Toronto. The conference, entitled The Narrative Fiction of Giovanni Boccaccio: Forms, Themes and Reception was presented by the Department of Italian Studies at the University of Toronto, in conjunction with the Emilio Goggio Chair in Italian Studies, the Department of Languages at U of T Mississauga, and the Istituto Italiano di Cultura Toronto. Boccaccio scholars travelled to Toronto from countries such as Italy, England, Brazil, Poland and the United States in order to present their work in an international setting and familiarize themselves with the types of research that are ongoing in their field. “The fact that people came to Toronto from around the world for this conference is a sign of the success of the conference,” said Professor Salvatore Bancheri, Chair of the Department of Italian Studies at U of T. Presentation themes included the cinematic interpretations of The Decameron by Pier Paolo Pasolini, the author’s most famous work, the narrative structures of the novella, Boccaccio’s cultural debts to both Roman classical and medieval authors, the role of animals within Boccaccio’s writing, as well as tolerance and dialogue among Christians, Jews and Muslims. And while Boccaccio lived seven centuries ago, his often-humorous stories of skill, intelligence and cunning, are relevant even to today’s society. (Sarah Mastroianni)

Dr. Joseph Fava

It was a night dedicated to arias, falsettos and encores. On February 4 at La Primavera Convention Centre in Woodbridge, Opera Belcanto of York hosted its 4th annual fundraising gala, Bravissimo! Opera Belcanto singers and a ballet demonstration entertained the 250 guests that included Vaughan Deputy Mayor Gino Rosati, Vaughan Regional Councillor Michael Di Biase, York South Weston MPP Laura Albanese From left: Gala committee member Geraldine di Marco and MC of the evening, Vincenzo with Vaughan Regional Councillor Michael Di Biase Somma from OMNI News. and Maestro David Varjabed. “Proceeds from the event will go towards our upcoming production of Il Trovatore on April 18 and 20 at the Richmond Hill Centre for the Performing Arts,” explains Opera Belcanto Soprano Michèle Pearson. Opera Belcanto, which is under the direction of Maestro David Varjabed, is a mixed-voice group of about 30 choir members and soloists of all ages who are all music enthusiasts. The group aims to help provide performance opportunities to both young and established artists, singers and musicians, in addition to introducing opera to younger generations through special performances and workshops. “Since 2006, Opera Belcanto has brought over 20 concerts of favourite operatic arias and choruses to audiences throughout York Region,” mentions Pearson. In 2010, La Traviata marked the first staged performance by the group. Other performances have included Cavalleria Rusticana, I Pagliacci, and most recently, Tosca. (Laura Nesci)

From left: Pianist Elizabeth Klimenko, soprano Luiza Zhuleva, soprano Tatevik Ashuryan, Deputy-Mayor of Vaughan Gino Rosati, soprano Iwona Jaczcsur, Helen Yang of Arts Richmond Hill, Board member Geraldine DiMarco, Board member Michele Pearson and chorus member Anna Krol.

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Angels Gala On the evening of Friday, February 22, over 300 guests attended the 5th annual Angels Gala in support of a heavenly cause: The Angels From Heaven Youth Foundation, which raises funds for community integration programs for physically and developmentally challenged youth. Held at the Venetian Banquet Hall and Hospitality Centre in Vaughan, the Gala included both a live and silent auction, as well as entertainment provided by Italian-Canadian comedian Freddy Proia. At the end of the evening, proceeds totaled over $75,000 and the foundation volunteers couldn’t be happier. "Our 5th Angels Gala was a huge success and I would like to thank our friends, family and guests and the

business community for your continued support and generosity,” said Gino Lombardi, who, along with his wife Connie, founded the Angels Foundation in 2007 to carry on the legacy of their late son, Giuliano. “Angels From Heaven Youth Foundation is committed to promoting an environment where children and young adults with disabilities can mature with their peers allowing them to discover their full potential,” said Lombardi. Working in conjunction with various community partners and schools such as Safehaven and Emily Carr Secondary School, The Angels Foundation succeeds in making the world a better place not only for disabled youth, but for us all. (Sarah Mastroianni)

John and Susan Bisaillon, Gina Lombardi, Miguel Calderone and friends of Angels From Heaven Youth Foundation

Gala volunteers

Continuing the Tradition of Sausage-Making

Residents of Villa Leonardo Gambin Long Term Facility in Vaughan were joined by staff, volunteers, family and friends for a day of sausage-making on February 21. The day kicked off at 10 am with the grinding, seasoning and casing of the meat with help from long-time volunteers Ida Ferrari, Rosa Zago, Elda Maraldo, Lucy Pupulin, Clara Tersigni and Teresa Tesan. All the hard work and fun paid off with a lunch featuring the freshly made sausages with sauce and polenta; the feast was accompanied by entertainer Franco Pagliaro. “We started the Sausage-Making Program to continue the Italian traditions that many of our residents had previously been partaking in prior to living in long term care,” said Sonia Roul, the centre’s recreation therapist. She added that many of the events focus on Italian culture and help to meet the needs of the facility’s residents. In addition to the Sausage Making Program, other events at Villa Leonardo Gambin include Wine Making in November, Sauce Making in September and La Festa di San Giuseppe in March. (Laura Nesci)

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Light the Darkness for Foundation Fighting Blindness

Ken Dryden (left) with Rose and Vince Lombardi

Fundraising committee

On Saturday, February 9, Light the Darkness Valentine’s Day Dinner and Dance continued to bring overwhelming support to the Foundation Fighting Blindness. Organized and founded by Vince Lombardi and his family, the 12th annual fundraiser raises awareness about sight-saving research. “It seems that every year this event becomes more and more popular,” says Lombardi. “We’re so grateful to everyone who comes out and contributes to the amazing atmosphere and to the Foundation Fighting Blindness.” Foundation Fighting Blindness is Canada’s largest charity funding research into causes, treatments and cures for retinitis pigmentosa, macular degeneration and other types of retinal degenerative diseases.

Over 400 guests attended the event at the Paradise Banquet and Convention Centre in Vaughan, and with the support of preceding years, the Light the Darkness fundraiser has raised a total of $157,000 since its inaugural year. With proactive supporters like Lombardi and his family, the Foundation Fighting Blindness has raised over $23 million in an effort to combat retinal diseases. “It makes us so happy to see more young adults joining Light the Darkness,” says Rosa Lombardi, Vince’s wife. “I’m so proud that at such young ages they realize and understand the power of participating and giving to special causes like this one.” (Stephanie Grella)

St. Margaret Mary Parish Valentine’s Dinner

Organizing committee

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Frank Cipollone, the Grand Knight of the Knights of Columbus Pine Grove Council 11273, receiving a thank you from the committee

Frank Cipollone

Vaughan MPP Steven Del Duca, Peter Cipriani, and organizing committee member Rocco Grossi

On Saturday, February 2, St. Margaret Mary Parish of Woodbridge, Ontario, celebrated its annual St. Valentine’s Day Dinner and Dance at Montecassino Place. “[The event] is the major fundraiser event for the church,” explained Rocco Grossi, organizing committee member, who added that the “highlight of the evening was honouring the Knights of Columbus Pine Grove Council 11273 for the continuous charitable support they give to the church and community.” Among those in attendance was Father Rony Grayda who was joined by more than 400 guests that came out to support the parish including Vaughan MP Julian Fantino, Vaughan MPP Steven Del Duca, Regional Councillor Deb Schulte, and Ward 2 Councillor Tony Carella. Everyone enjoyed delicious food, entertainment by artists such as Latin Energy, Radiant Sounds, Tatyana D’Avoce and Canadian pop star Andy Kim. Masters of Ceremonies were Andrea Trentadue from CHIN and businessman Sam Ciccolini, who is also a parishioner. (Laura Nesci)

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The Renaissance at the AGO The Renaissance period gave the Western world artistic works that have survived the centuries. And this spring Toronto has a chance to get up close and personal with rare panel paintings, manuscripts, sculptures and stained glass works that demonstrate the artist’s role in Florence and the birth of the Renaissance with its new exhibition. Revealing the Early Renaissance: Stories and Secrets in Florentine Art, runs until June 16 at The Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO). The exhibition is also the first of its kind in Canada, utilizing the assistance of technology and research to create hands-on stations that provide visitors with insight about how Bernardo Daddi these masterpieces were created and the Italian (Florentine), about 1280 – 1348 The Virgin Mary with Saints Thomas tools that were used. Patrons will also have Aquinas and Paul an opportunity to explore the inside of a The J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles Renaissance artist’s studio. There are about 90 key pieces on display that represent the first half of the 14th century such as Giotto’s five-panel Peruzzi Altarpiece, two painted and hand-written copies of Dante’s Divine Comedy and Bernardo Daddi’s Virgin Mary with Saints Thomas of Aquinas and Paul. The exhibition will explore how the city’s growing economy brought about the demand

Bernardo Daddi Italian (Florentine), about 1280 – 1348 A Crowned Virgin Martyr The Fine Arts Museum of San Francisco

Pacino di Bonaguida Italian (Florentine), died before 1340, active 1302 – 1340 The Appeal of Prato to Robert of Anjou The British Library

for both religious and civic artworks as well as the collaborative nature of artistic production. (Laura Nesci) For additional information, please visit All photos courtesy of the AGO

Beyond the Birch

Doris Pontieri (left) with gallery director Donna Child

On Thursday February 21, Toronto artist Doris Pontieri debuted Beyond the Birch, a new series of work which reflects her attempt to step out of her comfort zone. Although Pontieri has always used watercolour and acrylic in her paintings, the birch tree collection she presented at Artworld of Sherway showcases her experiment with charcoal. From receiving an Beyond the Birch collection award at the Louvre in Paris for her piece “Northern Birch Trees” to being personally invited by Marina Picasso (Pablo Picasso’s She explains this rarity as inspiration for the small, red leaves granddaughter) to exhibit her work in Cannes this fall, that she features in each piece of the collection. “These leaves Pontieri has only been moving forward. She recalls, “Someone came to symbolize survival for me,” says Pontieri. “In the heart recently asked me, ‘Are you on cloud nine?’ But truthfully, I’d of winter, when everything else is dormant, there are still signs have to climb down 200 clouds to get to cloud nine.” of this incredible life.” Pontieri credits her mother with giving her the inspiArtworld of Sherway’s director Donna Child says ration to pursue her love for art. “[My mother] found a euphothe collection is garnering a lot of positive feedback. “The ria in painting that I always wanted to feel,” she says. The artist response to her work has been phenomenal,” says Child. recalls that when she and her mother rode horses together in “[Pontieri] was the gallery’s top artist last month, and her the wintertime, they would come upon birch trees, which had international appeal is incredible.” Continuing with her magical qualities for Pontieri. After her mother passed away, European exhibitions, Pontieri is currently working on a piece Pontieri returned to riding and noticed a few leaves still for the Vatican. “I’ll never stop painting,” says Pontieri. “It’s hanging on to one of the branches—a rare sight during winter. what makes my heart smile.” (Stephanie Grella)

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Festa Della Donna

The Festa della Donne organizing committee of the Italian Cultural Centre of Brampton First row from left: Paula Fanni, Tina Palladino, Antonietta Guaiana and Maria Pia Di Palma Second row from left: Sue, Adriana Puzzo, Sandra Nadon, Franca Guaiana and Silvia Daniel

On Sunday, March 3, the Italian Cultural Centre of Brampton hosted their 7th annual Women’s Day celebration. This year’s Festa della Donna event involved vintage, classic and unique bracelets that all 210 women in attendance were encouraged to wear proudly. The afternoon was dedicated to women, and in keeping with that theme the event raised more than $3,400 for the Canadian Cancer Society’s Fight to End Women’s Cancer. Guests dined on a savoury lunch. Highlights included a fashion show sponsored by Gino’s Fashion and entertained by DJ Hugo Strancey. Adriana Puzzo, an event organizer, said she and the other members of the Italian Cultural Centre of Brampton wanted to shed some light on International Women's Day, which is widely celebrated in Europe but not as much in North America. Women 80 years and older were honoured with a rose, while Rachele Cervo and Tina Palladino, who had made positive contributions to their community, received the Spirit Award. (Diana Cina)


Carnevale Mask-Making The Carnival of Venice came to life in Vaughan this year as students in the International Languages Program St. John Bosco Catholic Elementary School took part in a Carnival mask-making assignment to celebrate the season. Under the guidance of the school’s Italian instructor, Catherine d’Ambrogio, students from grades 3-8 crafted their own Carnival-inspired masks, which were then judged by a panel of teachers. Small prizes were awarded and certain students were selected to present their masks to their class. Students were encouraged to recycle by household items to decorate their masks and to also portray an aspect of themselves in their creation. D’Ambrogio’s main goals in the classroom are to inspire students to want take advantage of their opportunity to learn Italian, and then to make that learning fun. With her mask-making assignment, she succeeds. “The students really enjoy making their masks,” said d’Ambrogio. “It’s fun for them, and I love to see their enthusiasm.” During the period of Carnevale, students also had lessons on the history of the Carnival of Venice, as well as on the different types of masks that are worn during the event and which were used by Venice’s Commedia dell’Arte. By incorporating Italian language, history, culture, art and public speaking in a fun and challenging assignment, the mask-making project at St. John Bosco not only succeeded in teaching students about an interesting aspect of Italian culture, but also helped them practice skills that will serve them in the future. (Sarah Mastroianni)

Savour York Region Dining out was a pleasure during Savour York Region’s winter restaurant week. Formerly known as Savour Vaughan, Savour York Region took place between February 25 and March 10 this year, with over 60 local dining establishments and hotels participating in the event. Serving up a feast of both homegrown and international flavours, participating trattorias, pizzerias, pubs, bars and restaurants offered special three-course, fixed-price lunch ($15-$20) and dinner ($20-$35) menus to help keep diners’ dollars within the community and support local businesses. In addition to the dining options, the event also included a Dine and Stay promotion, where local hotels offered special rates and partnered with participating restaurants to create packages for a complete night out. “As Savour York Region continues to grow, we want to give consumers a variety of choices from fine dining to family-friendly affordable places to dine out during the event,” said Nadia Cerelli-Fiore, Director of Marketing & Promotions. “We believe with the inclusion of more family-friendly restaurants and the wonderful independents we already have on board, the options are endless for consumers.” If you happened to miss Savour York Region this time around, don’t worry; restaurants and hotels will once again open their doors and offer promotions during the fall restaurant week, scheduled for October 21 - November 3, 2013. Buon appetito! (Sarah Mastroianni)

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Collezione Mario Righini A lifelong passion housed in a medieval castle Photos & text by Alain Raymond

“The Mario Righini automobile collection is one of the finest private collections in Italy. Would you like to visit?” asks Signora Adriana Zini, Director of Museo Casa Enzo Ferrari, in Modena. ow do you say “of course,” in Italian? Admittedly, I had never heard of the Righini Collection, but here I was the next morning, entering the 15th century castle of Panzano at Castelfranco Emilia, near Modena. As we wait in the inner court, a tall distinguished-looking gentleman greets us with a smile. “Io sono Mario Righini. Benvenuti in Italia,” says the charming host in a soft voice to the travelling journalist and his two friends. Luckily one of those friends is Salvatore Montana, from Saint-Jean-surRichelieu, Quebec, former Ferrari master race mechanic, who also serves as our interpreter. “I will show you my collection,” indicates Signore Righini as he opens a large wooden door. My automotive heart must have stopped for a moment as I recognized the front end of the Alfa Romeo 8C 2300. “This particular car won the 1933 Targa Florio, the 72 km historic mountain race held in Sicily from 1906 to 1977,” explains our host. Beside this icon of the glorious 30s stands the modern version of the “Otto C”, a 2007 Alfa Romeo 8C Competizione. “I am totally committed to Alfa Romeo,” admits Mario


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An awesome world-championship Lancia Stratos. A rally-winning Fiat-Abarth 124. A superb Alfa Romeo Giulia TZ … My automotive heart must have stopped several times before I finished drooling on the dozen or so great sports and racing cars stored in this medieval warehouse. The final surprise comes as we step out into the sunshine: “Would you like to visit the rest of the collection?” asks Signore Righini. “You mean there is

Righini, as he describes his beloved Alfa 8C 2300. Raising my eyes from the pair of Alfas, I recognize in the semi-dark warehouse a yellow Ferrari. “This is a 1953 Mondial Pinin Farina Spyder powered by a 4-cylinder 2 litre engine. Ferrari only built 31 Mondials.” Next to the amazing Mondial rests a 1946 Cisitalia D46. Then a 1938 BMW 328. A red Ferrari 365 GTB/4 Daytona. Lamborghini’s first, the 350 GT. A blue metallic Mercedes 300 SL Roadster.

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Entering the main hall of the Righini Collection. Row after row of historic machinery.

One of the most important cars in the collection, the only remaining Auto Avio Costruzioni Typo 815, the first car built by Enzo Ferrari before creating his own brand. This car won the 1940 Mille Miglia, driven by legendary Alberto Ascari.

A jewel in the Righini crown, the delightful Alfa Romeo 8C 2300 driven to victory at the 1933 Targa Florio and the Monza Grand Prix by Tazio Nuvolari, the “Flying Mantouan.”

more?” “A few more,” replies the smiling gentleman as he opens huge double pane wooden doors. Row after row of historic automobiles, most of them in their original un-restored condition. Lancia, Bugatti, Rolls Royce, Fiat, Stanguellini, Ford, Ansaldo (don’t ask), Itala, OM, Isotta Fraschini, and Alfa Romeos in great numbers, including a 1929 Alfa Romeo 6C GT Compressore, Benito Mussolini’s private car! How did all this happen? “Well, my family has been in the recycling business for several decades, and during World War II, on the request of the Italian government, we tore down thousands of old vehicles in order to recycle the steel and other valuable material. But my father had the foresight to keep significant vehicles that passed through our scrap yard. After the war, I continued the business, which is still active today, and I began adding to the collection. Of course, I favour legendary Italian cars, but I also collect cars, trucks, motorcycles and airplanes from other nationalities. It’s a lifelong passion that I enjoy sharing with visitors like you.” After a while, Signore Righini excuses himself: “I have to meet a group of students, so I will ask my assistant to show you the Motorcycle collection.” Following our new guide across the large flowering yard, we stop by a large covered object. Removing the tarp reveals the one and only 1912 Fiat Chiribiri, the land-speed record car powered by a huge seven litre aircraft engine. “It is in working condition, but we are careful when we start it up so as not to damage our eardrums.” Then comes the motorcycle collection in an adjacent building, from early Vespa scooters to World War II military Italian and German motorcycles to racing bikes, lined up one beside the other in what used to be the castle’s flour mill. “There is still more…” explains Signore Righini’s assistant “trucks and airplanes…” Having already spent a good part of the morning, we unfortunately have to leave this treasure trove on our way to another event of our memorable tour of Terra di Motori. Grazie mille, Signore Righini, for your hospitality and for safeguarding so many memorable machines for future generations to appreciate.


This original 1946 Cisitalia D46 powered by a Fiat 1100 cc engine was designed by Dante Giacosa, the famous engineer who designed many Fiat greats such as the legendary 500 Topolino and its successor, the timeless Fiat 500 Cinquecento.

Who would guess that this modest looking tricycle with its small trailer is one of the first motorized vehicles designed and built by Ettore Bugatti?

This fearsome “cigar” on four wheels is the unique Fiat Chiribiri powered by a 7-litre 300-horsepower aircraft engine capable of reaching 300 km/h (186 mph). Running on wooden wheels, this car broke the world record for the timed kilometre from a flying start at 160 km/h.

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Sports Mario Balotelli and Stephan El Shaarawy

MADE in Italy By Dante Di Iulio

Tensions were high on June 28, 2012, when Italy took on Germany in Warsaw to battle in the Euro 2012 semi-finals. The Italians had not lost to the Germans in any major tournament. And on that very same day, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Italian Prime Minister Mario Monti went head-to-head at the European Union Summit meeting. ario Balotelli’s two goals secured a berth into the finals —even with Mesut Ozil’s 90th minute penalty — while Mario Monti gained the upper hand in the political arena that evening. Die Mannschaft may have failed against the Azzurri; but however, the match marked a victory for nation building, as both goal scorers are the consequence of effective immigrant integration and symbols of their country’s changing national identity. In 2010, Angela Merkel claimed that multiculturalism in Germany had failed as a result of poor integration, except when it came to its national soccer team. With nearly half of its players carrying immigrant roots, star player Mesut Ozil is constantly praised by Merkel, seen as the poster boy for successful German integration. Ozil compares his style of play to his upbringing: “My technique and feeling for the ball is the Turkish side to my game, while the discipline, attitude and always-give-your-all are the German part." In the same year, then prime minister and current owner of AC Milan, Silvio Berlusconi, spoke against the idea of a multi-ethnic Italy despite severe backlash from the opposition who urged him to accept that Italy would inevitably become multi-ethnic, multicultural and multi-religious whether Italians liked it or not. The jus soli (or birthright citizenship) does not exist in Italy, so it’s still the nationality of one's parents that counts. Mario Balotelli was born in Palermo to Ghanaian immigrants and later adopted by an Italian-Jewish family in Brescia. He has no direct Italian blood ties, which is the same case as his Euro 2012 teammate, Angelo Ogbonna, who was born in Cassino to Nigerian immigrants. AC Milan’s Stephan El Shaarawy has enjoyed a magnificent sophomore season in Serie A, racking up an impressive goal tally and call-ups to the national team. Born in Savona to an Egyptian father and Italian mother, the 20-year-old striker is a non-observant Muslim who “feels more Italian than Egyptian.” Looking to the


future, the rossoneri paid €500,000 to Reggiana to sign 14-year-old wunderkind, Hachim Mastour. Born in Reggio Emilia to Moroccan parents, the Ronaldo-esque Mastour was hunted by Juventus, Manchester City and Real Madrid until he was swayed to join Milan. Except for El Shaarawy, whose mother is Italian, none of the other players qualify for jus soli, so they must apply for citizenship at the age of 18. With 8% of Italian children now of foreign origin, the Italian landscape has drastically changed. While Germany has amended its laws so that children born after 2000 to non-German parents can acquire German citizenship at birth based on permanent residence, Italy is proactively seeking to change its own. Three years after arguing Balotelli and Ogbonna against the idea of a multi-ethnic Italy, Berlusconi said, “It is strange that children born here can’t fully become Italians; one of the things that deeply touch me is listening to a coloured child speak in our dialect, Sicilian or Emilian.” Berlusconi’s comments may be a shrewd political maneuver coupled with a marketing ploy to depict AC Milan as the face of Italy’s new cultural makeup; however, it represents a step forward for a country that has largely mishandled immigration and integration.

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Panoram Italia Toronto Vol. 3 No. 2  

Italian-Canadian culture and lifestyle magazine

Panoram Italia Toronto Vol. 3 No. 2  

Italian-Canadian culture and lifestyle magazine