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Tag Archives: Lou Carlozo

Luthier Joseph Yanuziello

A native of Toronto, Joseph Yanuziello is the master craftsman behind some of the world’s most sought-after guitars. In the boutique guitar marketplace, where instruments routinely command $5,000 or more, Joseph Yanuziello’s instruments have become so popular you might think his company’s motto is “sold out.” As fast as he can build his stunning instruments — which draw universal raves for their sound, look and feel — they’re gone. Working from a shop outside his native Toronto, Yanuziello builds stringed instruments that reflect a singular vision. While so many companies outsource parts from overseas, he builds his own. While many ...

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Eco-friendly artist Simona Rodano

In her bilingual musical for young adults, Simona Rodano breaks artistic boundaries while tackling a topic of importance and poignancy. One well-worn cliché where adventurous artists are concerned centers on how they “follow their own muse.” But Simona Rodano is far more driven than that. Working within the four disciplines of music, theater, environmental science and education — spread out over two languages no less — this native of northern Italy has created what she calls an “edumusical” titled “Sempreverde: Evergreen.” Where anything environmental is concerned, Rodano knows whereof she speaks: A scientist by training, she deftly avoids the trap ...

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Jewish-Italian memoirist Eleanor Foa

In her memoir, Eleanor Foa addresses her family’s power, passion and paradox, and discovers deep literary significance in her Italian-Jewish ancestry. Being so strongly identified with Catholicism, Italy may strike the casual observer as inextricably connected to Christianity. But a closer look reveals that Italian Jews had much to do with the region’s history, culture and proud traditions. How much so? As Rabbi Barbara Aiello explained in a past Lou&A column, the very name “Italia” is of Hebrew origin. The first of the Jewish diaspora, on seeing the peninsula’s beautiful, misty coast, exclaimed “Aiee-tal-ya!”, a Hebrew phrase that means “the ...

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Elder lifestyle designer Lisa Cini

Lisa Cini’s design revolutions bring an Italian-American accent to improving Alzheimer’s and dementia care. “Nursing home” is a contradiction in terms for many Italian Americans, for whom the word “home” conjures images of Sunday dinners surrounded by friends, family and, of course, food. Lisa Cini grew up amid such celebratory weekends and today fights to bring some of that warmth and spirit to adult care. As an interior designer of long-term care facilities, Cini has become an expert in how design can positively impact those with Alzheimer’s and dementia. She’s also cared for a grandparent with those very conditions — ...

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WW II historian Dr. Cindy Gueli

In her book “Lipstick Brigade,” Dr. Cindy Gueli brings to light the almost-lost history of World War II’s ‘Government Girls.’ It’s one thing to document history by encountering it through antiquities, long-lost archives and dead-end trails left for an informed imagination to reconstruct. Then comes the history that remains so real, it lives, breathes and speaks through the women who made it. In those instances, the historian blossoms into a dynamic preservationist: working to record, for all time, remarkable stories and deeds that hide in plain sight. That mission becomes all the more critical when the history-makers in question — ...

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Traditional dance advocate Anna Pishner Harsh

Through her Allegro Dance company, Anna Pishner Harsh turns Italian traditions into a cultural treasure to preserve and pass on. The traditions of Italian dance — like those of any traditional art form — only have two places to go: either the dusty confines of museum exhibits and history books, or back into the spotlight to live in real time. Picking the latter requires much more than just pluck. You have to take on the multiple roles of ambassador, preservationist and electric artist, all propelled by indomitable passion. Anna Pishner Harsh — director, founder and choreographer for the Allegro Dance ...

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Master podcaster John Viola

Through “The Italian American Experience,” John Viola shines a light on all that makes our heritage great. While our immigrant forebears sat by giant radio consoles to absorb the news, music and culture of Italy, today’s Italian Americans have podcasts and, among them, one has remarkable traction. How much? Try roughly 20,000 listens per episode. Not bad for a program that’s less than four years old and the product of programmers learning the ropes as they go. The driving force behind “The Italian American Experience” (italianamericanexperience.com) and its every-other-week companion, “The Italian American Power Hour,” is John Viola. If that ...

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Filmmaker and critic Jeannine Guilyard

An esteemed film critic and now documentary filmmaker, Jeannine Guilyard taps into her professional roots to celebrate her Italian culture. As Italian Americans, we often play movies in our minds about what life was like back in the homeland for our ancestors. Some of us simply imagine it and others make pilgrimages to villages in search of precious clues. But for Jeannine Guilyard, that movie has taken shape and form as an award-winning documentary, “Return to Lucania.” Readers of this publication will recognize Guilyard as a longtime contributor and arguably America’s premiere Italian film critic. An Emmy and Peabody Award-winning ...

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Sardinian playwright Karim Galici

As a native of Italy’s insular island to the west, Karim Galici brings a fresh slant to his work as a theater pioneer and experimental director. Among Italian artists, Karim Galici is unique in large part because of where he comes from in Italy. The island of Sardinia, he notes, is in some ways more like its island neighbor to the north than the rest of Italy, even though Corsica is part of France. Perhaps this explains in part why Galici tackled the French author Antoine de Saint-Exupery for the theatrical work “The Little Big Princess,” which traveled to Chicago ...

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Museum founder Marianna Gatto

As executive director of the Italian American Museum of Los Angeles, Marianna Gatto has made it her life’s work to celebrate L.A.’s rich and largely unknown Italian legacy. Los Angeles is all too well known for its Hollywood heavies, rock stars and thriving Latino culture. But as Marianna Gatto will gladly tell you, Italian roots run rich and deep there in ways unlike any other American metropolis. Gatto, who serves as the executive director of the Italian American Museum of Los Angeles, dreamt of forming the institution that she now runs ever since first setting foot in an abandoned Italian ...

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