ITALICS: Italian Heritage & Culture Month Special #2 2015: Quintavalle/van Straten



The second in ITALICS’ 9th Season of Italian Heritage and Culture Month Specials, this edition features the Honorable Natalia Quintavalle, Consul General of Italy in New York, and Giorgio van Straten, Director of the Italian Cultural Institute in New York.

In her 29 years as a career diplomat, Natalia Quintavalle has worked on U.N. issues - at the Italian Permanent Mission in Geneva, and at the Permanent Mission in New York. She was Italian Consul in Toulouse, First Secretary at the Italian Embassy in Riyadh, and has been Italian Consul General in New York since September 2011, now serving her third term.

Giorgio van Straten is an Italian writer and cultural broker, editor, and translator of major literary works, and a director of the Italian literary magazine “Nuovi argomenti.” He has written for musical theater, served as Chairman of the Orchestra della Toscana, on the Board of Directors of the Biennale di Venezia, President of the Italian Association for the Performing Arts, General Director of the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino, Director of the Palazzo Delle Esposizioni e Scuderie del Quirinale in Rome, and on the Board of Directors of RAI. In 2015 he was named Director of the Italian Cultural Institute in New York. (Taped 10/08/15)​

On this special episode of ITALICS we'll update you on new Graduate level course offerings at Queens College, and discuss the state of Italian American Studies at CUNY, SUNY and Universities & Colleges throughout the Nation, and in Italy. Dr. Anthony J. Tamburri is joined for this discussion by Dr. Mary Jo Bona, Professor of Italian American Studies & Women's and Gender Studies at Stony Brook University/SUNY, and Dr. Fred Gardaphe, Distinguished Professor of Italian American Studies and English at Queens College/CUNY.
ITALICS introduces you to Vincent Piazza, rising young actor, whose portrayal of "Lucky Luciano" on HBO's "Boardwalk Empire" has brought him great critical acclaim and public notice. Then we'll take you to a conference, Vito Marcantonio and the Puerto Rican People: Solidarity & Progress, sponsored by the Center for Puerto Rican Studies at Hunter College/CUNY, the Vito Marcantonio Forum and the Italian American Studies Association.
Host Anthony Julian Tamburri interviews President Frank Fusaro and Chairman Louis Tallarini of the Columbus Citizens Foundation. They discuss the Foundation's many contributions to the Italian community, such as running the Columbus Day Parade, as well as the history of the Foundation and its focus today.
ITALICS joins The New York Conference of Italian American State Legislators as they celebrate "Italian American Day" in Albany, N.Y. Next we follow AS Roma, Italian soccer team on their recent summer tour of some of the great cities of the United States, bringing Calcio, or football, the beautiful game to America. Bill Schempp, former ITALICS producer reports from Red Bulls Arena in nearby Harrison, New Jersey.
We take you to the Calandra Institute for our annual conference, whose theme this year was "Re-Imagining White Ethnicity: Expressivity, Identity, Race." The Conference was held at The John D. Calandra Italian American Institute/Queens College/CUNY in Mid-town Manhattan, on April 26 through April 28. Next, we go to a recent reading of excerpts from Celluloid Activist, The Life and Times of Vito Russo, a new biography by Professor Michael Schiavi.
First on ITALICS we go to The National Italian American Foundation's annual East Coast Gala Dinner 2012, held in New York City at Cipriani's on 42nd Street. Next, we join The Remember The Triangle Fire Coalition and others at the 101st Commemoration of the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire.
Dr. Aileen Riotto Sirey, Founder & Chair of The National Organization of Italian American Women talks with Dean Anthony J Tamburri about her 32 years in its leadership role as Founder and Chair. ITALICS takes you to “The Hon. Geraldine A. Ferraro, The Italian American Woman Who Made History," NOIAW’s 2012 Women History Month event, in collaboration with the Calandra Institute, dedicated to the memory and legacy of the late Congresswoman Geraldine A. Ferraro.
This entire episode of Italics is dedicated to acts of devotion, religious devotion and one's personal devotion to family. First we'll look at religious devotion, through Graces Received, Painted and Metal Ex-votos from Italy, an exhibition held at the Calandra Institute in spring of 2012. Dr. Leonard Primiano speaks about his collection, which makes up the bulk of the exhibition. Our second look at devotion involves one's personal devotion to family. We'll talk with Chiara Montalto, writer and performer of "A Brooklyn Love Story: Emergency Used Candles."
On this edition dedicated entirely to Italian American Scholarship, we’ll talk with Dr Fred Gardaphe, Distinguished Professor of English and Italian American Studies at Queens College/CUNY and the Calandra Institute, who discusses some of his most recent publications. Next we’ll talk with Dr. Joseph Sciorra, Associate Director of Academic and Cultural Programs at the Calandra Institute, talking about his latest research and projects.
This special edition of ITALICS is dedicated entirely to the National Italian American Foundation's 36th Annual Weekend Conference and Gala Awards Dinner. We'll take you to the Hilton Hotel in Washington, D.C., where over 2,500 NIAF members and press convened to celebrate both Italian Heritage and Culture Month and the 150th Unification of the Republic of Italy. The highlight of the weekend conference's many events was President Barack Obama's Keynote Address.