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Louis Prima, Jr. and the Witnesses featuring Sarah Spiegel
   

Appearing Saturday, September 24, 8:30 pm
on the Roma Bank Stage!



 
 
Friday, September 23, 2011
Time Performer Location
03:30 - 04:30 PM Bella Mandolins of New York Roma Bank Stage
05:00 - 06:30 PM Sidewalk Serenade Roma Bank Stage
06:00 - 07:00 PM Penny And The Puppettes Festival Grounds
07:00 - 08:30 PM The Nerds Roma Bank Stage
07:00 - 08:00 PM Natalie Pinto Cabaret Stage
08:00 - 09:00 PM Penny And The Puppettes Festival Grounds
08:30 - 09:30 PM Mojo Gypsies Blues Cabaret Stage
09:00 - 10:00 PM Frank, Dean & Marilyn "Alive & Swinging" Roma Bank Stage
 
Saturday, September 24, 2011
Time Performer Location
12:30 - 01:30 PM Primavera Roma Bank Stage
02:00 - 03:30 PM Joe Scannella Orchestra Roma Bank Stage
02:00 - 03:00 PM Penny And The Puppettes Festival Grounds
02:30 - 03:30 PM Marcantonio/Comedian/Neapolitan Singer Cabaret Stage
03:30 - 04:30 PM Penny And The Puppettes Festival Grounds
04:00 - 05:00 PM Enrico Capuano and T-Rock from Italy Roma Bank Stage
04:00 - 05:00 PM Doo Wop Brothers Cabaret Stage
05:30 - 06:30 PM Martin and Lewis Roma Bank Stage
05:30 - 06:30 PM Marcantonio Cabaret Stage
05:30 - 06:30 PM Penny And The Puppettes Festival Grounds
07:00 - 08:00 PM Aaron Caruso, Tenor Roma Bank Stage
07:00 - 08:00 PM After Dark Band Cabaret Stage
07:30 - 08:30 PM Penny And The Puppettes Festival Grounds
08:30 - 10:00 PM Louis Prima Jr. & The Witnesses feat. Sarah Spiegel Roma Bank Stage
10:00 - 10:30 PM New Jersey Lottery Fireworks Spectacular Festival Grounds
 
Sunday, September 25, 2011
Time Performer Location
11:00 - 12:00 PM Catholic Mass Roma Bank Stage
01:00 - 02:00 PM All That Jazz Dance Academy Roma Bank Stage
01:00 - 02:00 PM Ewing Talent Show Cabaret Stage
02:00 - 03:00 PM Penny And The Puppettes Festival Grounds
02:30 - 04:00 PM Boheme Opera, NJ Roma Bank Stage
02:30 - 03:15 PM Abbott & Costello Cabaret Stage
03:30 - 04:30 PM Elio Scaccio Singer Cabaret Stage
04:00 - 04:45 PM Vivaci Italian Dance Troupe Roma Bank Stage
04:00 - 05:00 PM Penny And The Puppettes Festival Grounds
05:00 - 06:30 PM Len Enourato Orchestra Roma Bank Stage
05:00 - 05:45 PM Abbott & Costello Cabaret Stage
06:00 - 07:00 PM Penny And The Puppettes Festival Grounds
06:30 - 07:30 PM Fulvio Ronni Cabaret Stage
07:30 - 09:00 PM Masterpiece Roma Bank Stage

Roma bank

Aaron Caruso
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Aaron Caruso has been singing for 20 years.  Classically, he studied piano for years and trombone for six years.  He's been performing onstage since the tender age of 6.  He attended the world renowned "Interlochen Arts Academy" for high school.  He earned his bachelor degree in Vocal Performance with an Italian Minor from the University of Michigan.  He speaks four languages fluently (Italian, English, Spanish and French) and can sing in seven including Russian, Latin and German.  He has studied Opera abroad in Italy for one year and in New York City with Maestro Luigi Veccia for 8 years.
   
Fulvio Ranni
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Fulvio starting playing the accordian in Italy at age of 8.  His first performance was in a little caffe in a piazza in central Italy (Pescara).  He eventually moved to northern Italy to study classic piano at the Conservatory of Music in Parma.  He toured around Europe with his band performing dance music for five years before coming to America in 1997. In America, he started his solo career and also put together his own band "Fulvio and Friends".
 
   
Abbott & Costello Show
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In a tribute to Paterson, New Jersey native and accomplished Italian American, Lou Costello, the Mercer County Italian American Festival is proud to have 'The Abbott and Costello Show' with Gil 'Bud' Palmer and Lou Sciara.  The pair joined forces in 1992 when they each won first place in an Abbott & Costello look-a-like contest sponsored by Shanachie Entertainment, producers of the 'Abbott & Costello Show' videotape series.  Bud and Lou with host Michael Townsend Wright from the 'Uncle Floyd Show' will be performing all of the memorable Abbott and Costello routines including the hilarious 'Who's On First?'
   
After Dark Band
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The After Dark Band has been providing live music for some of the tri-state area's most memorable weddings and popular night spots for over a decade. They are a uniquely talented and class act. Their diverse musical offerings, unforgettable performance style, ability to play multiple instruments and all sing, together with their vast musical repertoire and ability to get your guest on their feet and having a good time will surely also make your event well remembered by all who attend. The members of After Dark are not only well-seasoned professional musicians but entertainers as well. They have performed with some of the finest society, dance, and show bands from Las Vegas to Atlantic City and throughout the tri-state area before coming together and forming After Dark.

When it comes to working with their clients at a personal level on pre-event planning details such as determining the flow of the evening, musical selections for special dances, dedications, logistics or general emceeing details, After Dark is always very professional and easy to work with.

   
All That Jazz Dance Academy
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All That Jazz Dance Academy has recently celebrated it's10th Anniversary as well as 10 years with the Italian-American Festival of Mercer County!  The academy offers classes in Jazz, Tap, Ballet, Pointe, Lyrical, Hip-hop, Character Jazz, Technique, Choreography, Voice, Acting and Guitar.  The All That Jazz Competition Team is a Platinum Award winning team, and Director/Choreographer Deborah Delpopolo has won multiple awards for her innovative choreography.  All That Jazz was named "Best Studio for Choreography" at Dance Arts Plus Dance Competition 2 years in a row. 
 
All That Jazz believes that "self-expression leads to self-confidence" and it shows in their dancers performances.  Every Winter the academy holds a holiday performance to raise money for worthy charities such as Womanspace, St. Jude's Children's Hospital, Pet Rescue of Mercer, homelessness in Mercer County and Jerry's Kids.
 
All That Jazz is a safe, nurturing environment where teachers are hand selected by Director Deborah Delpopolo.  All teachers are NYC trained and workshops are held regularly with choreographers such as Slam from Madonna's movie "Truth or Dare".  Students of All That Jazz have gone on to perform in musicals at MCCC's Kelsey Theater, Great Adventure and NYC workshops.  Deborah Delpopolo is proud to celebrate her Italian heritage! More information about the studio may be found at their website
www.allthatjazzda.com

   
Bella Mandolins
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Bella Mandolins of New York feature Peter Vecchio and Erick Cholico.  Peter Vecchio is a highly accomplished singer/guitarist whose career spans more than three decades.  His beautiful Italian baritone was once a mainstay at the fabled Mamma Leone's restaurant in New York City where he became recognized as a superb entertainer.  Over the years, Peter has worked all across the tri-state area.  He is now regularly featured in Lorenzo's award winning cabaret and restaurant at the Hilton Garden Inn in Staten Island for the Sunday dinner buffet.  Erick Cholico is the mandolin player.  Adopted and raised by an Italian family, Erick's exposure to traditional Italian music began at age nine working for maestro Umberto Cardone.  He worked in venues across New York City including Umberto's Clam House and Vincent's in Little Italy.  He also performed on the concert stage of NJPAC.  He did an honorary tour of Messina, Italy where he was part of a concert featuring the best of New York's musicians.  He currently works for Violinatta.com and Bella Mandolins of New York.
   
Boheme Opera
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Chivonne Perkins holds a Bachelor of Music degree with a concentration in Vocal Performance, Classical and is currently pursuing a Master of Music degree at New Jersey City University.  She has appeared in numerous productions of various genres and components with NJCU's Music, Dance and Theater department, has performed in various concerts with NYC based non-profit opera companies, and is a New York district winner of the Metropolitan Opera Council Auditions.  This fall she will perform the role of "Mimi" in Giacomo Puccini's "La Boheme" at NJCU's West Side theater and again at Park Performing Arts Center in Union City, NJ from September 16th to October 2nd.  Ms. Perkins also enjoys modeling, dancing, song writing, and participating in outreach projects through ministry, performing arts, education and health and wellness.

   
Boheme Opera
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Toffer Mihalka, Tenor.  This young tenor was featured early in his career with Boheme Opera NJ in 2002 as Normanno in "Lucia di Lammermoor", and in 2003 as Remendado in "Carmen".  Since that time he has appeared in numerous operatic stage roles, including Rodolfo in "La Boheme", Duca in "Rigoletto", Cavaradossi in "Tosca", Don Alvaro in "La Forza del Destine", Eunuco in "Il Corsaro", Der Officer in "Ariadne auf Naxos", and Cassio in "Otello", among others, with such companies as Cincinnati Opera, Sarasota Opera, New Jersey Concert Opera Seabrook.  He will soon perform scenes from "Il Corsaro" and "La Forza del Destino" with One World Symphony.  Toffer is a Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions District Winner and Regional Finalist.

   
Dean Martin/Jerry Lewis
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The multi-talented Sonny Averona Jr. (Dean Martin) vocalist and entertainer originally from South Philadelphia, now resides in New Jersey. He is following in the footsteps of his father, the late-great entertainer Sonny Averona Sr.

Sonny Jr. has appeared at the Apollo Theater in New York, and also worked with Ben E. King in New York. He was featured in a story on TV's Street Stories with Ed Bradley. Also had a TV Variety show on WWAC Channel 53 in Atlantic City. He worked with former heavyweight boxing champion "Smokin" Joe Frazier and most recently has been appearing on the Atlantic City casino circuit.

Among Sonny's many talents are the song stylings of Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and Rat Pack material along with some Bobby Darin.

Johnny "Bones" Cipparone (Jerry Lewis) was born and raised in South Philadelphia and now resides in New Jersey. With his uncanny portrayal of Jerry Lewis, Johnny has worked with Phillys own Bobby Rydell, Chubby Checker and Charlie Gracie to name a few. Currently Johnny Bones is working with Sonny Averona, Jr. in a tribute to Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis which is delighting audiences everywhere.

   
Elio Scaccio
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Elio Scaccio has been singing virtually all his life.  As a small boy, Elio developed a firm understanding of the relationship between melody and complex harmony - rare for such a young child.  By the age of 8, he was already widely recognized as a gifted vocalist, appearing locally and regionally as part of an acapella troupe that included two brothers.  Thus began a musical journey that would eventually lead to Lettere D'Amore CD.  In recent years, Elio appeared in a myriad of venues including concerts, clubs, festivals, TV and radio, throughout the mid-Atlantic area - performing an equally broad array of musical styles.  Indeed, one of the truly distinguished qualities of this talented artist is his ability to "crossover" between classical, pop standards and Italian.   
   
Enrico Capuano & T-Rock from Italy
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 Combining elements of rock, Italian Tarantella, gypsy music and positive energy.  This is the secret of Tammurriatarock's great live show.  The band is considered "Italy's most exciting live band".  Enrico Capuano (Tammurriatrock's frontman and entertainer with a rebel rock'n'roll and progressive heart) started 25 yrs. ago mixing Italian popular music, traditional rhythms with modern cool sounds.  He found inspiration in Italian and multicultural original cultures.  Five albums and more than 100 concerts every year, a lot of important Italian events such as PRIMO MAGGIO PIAZZA SUN GIOVANNI (one of the bigger European concerts) with 1 million people attending.  Much of the band's sound is inspired by Gypsy music.  The band incorporates minor-key accordion and a special violin with distortion and guitar effects.  The concert is a mix between Italian roots like Saltarello, Pizzica and Tarangella and modern sounds like ska, rock and latin.  This is the original Tarantella Rock!
   
Frank, Dean & Marilyn
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The fabulous tribute to Frank Sinatra by Billy Kay portrays Frank in the "Chairman Of The Board Years."  Featuring Billy's live singing impersonation, that not only looks like Frank Sinatra, but sounds like Frank Sinatra as well.  Billy Kay seems to emulate all of the typical Frank Sinatra stage mannerisms.  As a local NJ radio personality commented "Looking at Billy Kay on stage is like seeing and hearing Frank Sinatra perform one last time."  Billy Kay has performed his Frank Sinatra tribute all over the U.S. and Canada to sold out audiences for over twelve years.  Among his credits Billy had been hand picked to perform live at various venues across the U.S. by Capitol Records Marketing to promote Frank Sinatra's CD releases DUETS in 1993,  DUETS II in 1994 and Capitol's 80th birthday release in 1995.  Billy is accompanied on stage by "Holly Farris" who will be portraying Marilyn and "Rich Sette" as Dean.

  

   
Joseph M. Scannella
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Conductor, Performer, Composer, Arranger, Educator

Mr. Scannella taught instrumental music in the Branchburg Township Schools for 25 years. He has conducted the Mercer County Band, Kasia Cultural Arts Center Orchestra, the Greater Princeton Youth Orchestra, the Trenton Symponetta, and the Trenton Youth Orchestra. He continues to conduct and perform music at a variety of Italian, jazz and social events. He has served in the capacity of President as both the New Jersey conference of Musicians and the Trenton Musicians Local #62

Over Mr. Scannella's long career he has performed and recorded with the Philadelphia Orchestra and the Philadelphia Brass Ensemble. He has been a member of the Trenton Symphony, the Princeton Chamber Orchestra, the Delaware Valley Orchestra, the N.B.C. Opera Company, and the Trenton Civic Opera. Over the years, Mr. Scannella has appeared with and provided back-up for such esteemed performers as Diana Ross, Bob Hope, Eugene Ormandy, Arthur Fiedler, Zubin Mehta, Al Martino, Louis Prima, Liberace, Roberta Peters, Issac Stern, Gorden McRae, Don Cornell, Eddie Arnold, Meredith Wilson and many more.

Mr. Scannella is a graduate of the Juillard School of Music. He resides in Ewing Township, NJ with Mary, his wife of 45 years. He has five children and four grandchildren.

   
Lenny Enourato Orchestra
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Led by Lenny Enourato on sax, this 13 piece big band plays swing in the style made popular in the 40's.  They play throughout the region and have performed in New York City's famous Roseland Ballroom. Playing standards and contemporary hits, they are sure to have you up and dancing.
   
Marcantonio/comedian/Neapolitan Singer
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Marcantonio was born in Jamaica, NY on July 16th 1961. He was raised in South Jamaica, which, at the time, was a working class poor neighborhood inhabited by many Italian-Americans. His parents were average second generation Italian-Americans.

Marcontonio lived in his maternal grandparents house. They were wonderful jolly people from the Naples region of Italy. His Grandpa made wine in the cellar, had fig and cherry trees, and taught him everything about Southern Italian peasant culture including gardening, and wine making. His Grandma relieved his anxities, and bad feelings by lifting "the eyes" from him (The evil eye known as malochio). This was done by performing a ritual using a bowl of water and drops of oil. After analyzing the oil formations, she would begin mumbling solf prayers and making crosses on his head. You may believe what you will, but after this Grandmothers prayers, he always felt light as a feather and without a trouble in he world.

Being so close to these wonderful people, he naturally fell in love with and shared in their taste in music. Every year, in his neighborhood, a grand event was celebrated in honor of the feast of beloved St. Anthony. The celebration included processions, fabulous Neapolitan singers and great comic performers.

Mercantonio began an obsession for collecting Neapolitan and other Southern Italian recordings. I had a dream of some day being one of those performers, and started singing in the garden, in the shower, almost everywhere. One day he decided to attend the Feast of St. Andrew, held by the people of Amalfi in New Haven. A great friend and talented singer Nina Sanseverino was scheduled to sing that evening. She was to be accompanied on the piano by multi-talented Renaissance man with a rendition of "Desiderio", Professor Ralph called Marcantonio to the stage and asked, "Would you like to do something?" Marcantonio recalls, I responded shyly, and asked if I could sing a famous Neapolitan song called Tammuriata Nera and Ralph began to play and I began to sing... I will never forget my knees trembling and my rapid heart beat! "At the end of the song, I could not believe the applause I received". And thanks to my two irreplaceable friends from New Haven, my dream came true.

That was 1985. Since then, Marcantonio has been a regular at Italian feasts throughout the Tri-state area and beyond

   
Masterpiece
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Masterpiece is a "high energy" party/dance band featuring outstanding vocalists supported by sizzling rhythm and horn sections.

Masterpiece features a diverse repertoire of songs from the "Big Band" era of the 40's to the "vibrant" sounds of today's hits.

Masterpiece has provided the finest in live entertainment at many Nightclub venues and Banquet Facilities throughout New Jersey, Pennsylvania and New York and will create that same atmosphere at this year's Italian-American Festival. Come see this "dynamic" band and dance to a variety of "Standards", "Italian", "Top 40 Dance", Disco", "Soul", "Motown:, "Oldies" and "Rock 'n Roll' favorites.

   
Mojo Gypsies
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For more than a decade, the Mojo Gypsies have been bringing their eclectic blend of up-tempo blues and old-school R&B to appreciative audiences throughout the tri-state area.

With a host of influences as varied as Louis Jordan and Ray Charles to Marvin Gaye and Arethea Franklin, all the way to Bruce Springsteen and Frank Sinatra, the Gypsies like to have some fun and get folks up dancing!

Seasoned veterans of several area bands, Dave "The Professor" Orban, hailing from Trenton, NJ, fronts the band, manhandling the guitar and vocals. The inimitable Guy DeRosa, from Hopewell, NJ, wails on harmonica extraordinaire. Flourtown, PA resident Flourtown Fats lays down a big, fat bottom on electric and upright bass, while Flemington-based Keith Csolak keeps a rock-solid groove going, on drums and percussion.

Never ones to shirk from a challenge, the Gypsies pride themselves in rising to any musical occasion, from small intimate gatherings to large outdoor festivals. Available as an "unplugged" duo or trio, or as a four or five-piece combo, the Mojo Gypsies are sure to please even the most discriminating of blues and r&b afficionados.

   
Natalie Pinto
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Natalie began singing at the age of 8. Natalie has performed with such great Italian artists such as Pepino DeCapri, Franco Simone and Lola Ponce.  She released her first single "Arrivederci Amore Mio" at the early age of 13.  By the time Natalie was 18 years old, she had recorded her hit song "Sogno Di Primavera", which remained No. 1 on the Italian Hit Parade for 20 weeks.  Although ecstatic for her Italian heritage, Natalie is also proud to be an American.  One of Natalie's most notable talents is her multilingual singing abilities.  Throughout her career, Natalie has recorded and performed in four languages including Italian, English, French and Spanish.  Some of her most recognized credits include several albums, television, film, theater concerts and festival appearances.  Natalie presents unique, customized shows, which will mesmerize you with the beauty of her commanding theatrical, and authentic voice.  Since she offers such a vast repertoire of songs, Natalie has created various shows, which everyone can enjoy.  She takes her audience's on a romantic journey to Europe and all the way back to the NYC Broadway Theater in one show.  Natalie's music touches all parts of the mind and soul.
 
   
Penny & the Puppettes
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Penny Sue - (aka Merissa Morin) is co-creator of Penny & the Puppettes and a graduate of New York University's Musical Theater program at Tisch School of the Arts. Her adult acting career includes: co-starring in the film One Night with Melissa Leo, a brief role on The Sopranos, and most recently starring in the independent film Tackle Girl. Penny also writes music on both the guitar and piano, and gigs out in Manhattan music venues. She is the third generation in a family of children's entertainers (see more about her grandfather, Bob Munstedt and mother Jane Stratten, below), and is thrilled to be continuing in the family tradition. Her vocals are featured on Jane's album, Uh Oh, There's Something Underneath My Bed, in the songs "Stand" and "Get that Big Beak Outta My Face!"
   
Prima Vera/Italian Trio
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Tony Valente came to America in 1964 from "Castrovillarri" in Calabria and although he started playing guitar in 1969, he actually was a professional "soccer player" and travelled throughout the US from 1971 to 1976.  In 1988 the trio "Prima Vera" was formed.  Tony plays guitar and sings Italian folk music.  Luigi plays bass and sings modern American songs and Vinny plays keyboard.  They also have, at times, an additional singer "Calogero" who sings "Elvis" hits and also sings in Italian.  
   
Sidewalk Serenade
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Sidewalk Serenade is a combination of former original members of The Be-Bops, Jersey Dream and The Shoretones.  This combination of talented vocalist with decades of experience, allows the group to perform the songs and music from the 50's, 60's, and 70's in the truest tradition of street corner harmony.  Whether backed by music or just singing "acapella", Sidewalk Serenade will bring back memories with their distinct style of singing and playing.  From Doo-wop to Motown to Classic Rock, you will be transported back in time when you listen, dance or sing along to some of the greatest songs ever recorded.
 
   
The Doo Wop Brothers
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Most men probably wonder what they would do differently if they ran into a girl from their years in high school. But what if that person from high school was another man?

For Rich Earl and Joe Schrull, both graduates of Riverside High School, that occasion happened on stage. Earl jumped up on a Long Beach Island stage to sing oldies with a band led by Schrull, and the two have since started their own duo.

The Doo Wop Brothers specializes in harmony group songs from the 1950s and 60s, the era the two Burlington County natives grew up in. Earl plays bass and now hails from Moorestown, while Schrull performs on keyboards and resides in Tuckerton.

They have a repertoire of more than 90 songs.

   
The Nerds
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You can't help but have fun when you spend an evening with the THE NERDS. Enjoy an evening of sheer entertainment with the band that combines high energy rock n' roll with a stage of pure talent and comedy. The Nerds 200 plus performances per year have completely dominated the club, college, corporate, fair and festival markets. From the House of Blues in Boston to the Shrine in L.A., from British Columbia to Bermuda and the Bahamas; from Florida to Arizona; to Ohio and back to Atlantic City; all through New Jersey and back to New York; from selling out Carnegie Hall, to headlining at the PNC Bank Arts Center, The Nerds continue to entertain their massive fan base that stretches all over the world.

   
Vivaci Dancers
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Vivaci! (Formerly named I Ballerini e le Voci d'Italia - Dancers and Voices of Italy) was founded in 1972 by  Cav. Elba Farabegoli Gurzau. Elba, the author of Folk Dances, Costumes and Customs of Italy (1963), dedicated her life to researching Italian dances, songs and traditions. Her book of dance and costume has enabled many Italian folk groups to get started. In the 1980's, Elba brought together other Italian folk groups and formed the Italian Folk Art Federation of America (IFAFA). IFAFA has a conference every few years so that individuals can share, learn and experience the many beautiful and diverse Italian Folk arts.

Elba directed I Ballerini e le Voci d'Italia until 1998 at which time she handed the reins over to Paul Torna who has been performing with Ballerini e Voci since 1991. Elba remained involved with the group until her death in June of 2003. In late 2005, the group was renamed Vivaci!, which was the original name Cav. Elba Gurzau wanted to give the group.

Our group's goal is to learn, share and teach the varied and diverse folk arts of Italy. We try to maintain the true joyous spirit and informal nature of Italian dance. Our group is informal and low stress!. Our group is made up of approximately 16 dancers ranging in age from 10 years to 75 years.

   

 

 
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