Of bonfires, births and the solstice

An evening of traditional folk songs starting with the 16th January – when the Fòcara (the Bonfire) is set alight, leading through to the traditional beginning of the winter solstice – 11th November, then the Christmas/New Year celebrations,and ending with Epiphany – 6th January (the Twelfth Night).

Throughout these festivities, a group of singers would visit the houses and homesteads scattered in the countryside and ask for food and drink in exchange for the performance of the songs. Let’s travel to some little town in Italy; sharing our world with friends – eating, drinking and singing … and be ready to dance to unforgettable folk tunes!

Presented by the Italian Folk Ensemble.


Fullarton Park Community Centre

411 Fullarton Rd, Fullarton

6:30pm for a 7:00pm start                                                  

Saturday, 10th November 2018


$25 per person – includes Italian coffee & libretto with the original texts also translated into Italian and English.

BYO food to share with friends and others.

For tickets contact Dino on  8271 1929.


The Italian Folk Ensemble has been researching and performing traditional and popular songs of the Italian people, fully respecting their individual musical style and their cultural context. These songs cover a wide spectrum of emotions and experiences of the people of Italy through the ages; as such they are a unique medium to learn Italian culture and history. The Ensemble acknowledges the legacy that Antonio Comin has left within its rank. His passion for research and presentation of Italian culture is reflected in tonight performance.


Language and Legacy project launch


The project Exploring the legacy of the Italian language across generations of women of Italian origin was presented on Sunday 11 February 2018 in the beautiful setting of the Migration Museum in Adelaide, South Australia, a museum that collects important documents and testimonies of emigration in South Australia.


During the event there were speeches from Mandy Paul, Director of the Migration Museum; Daniela Costa, President and Editor of Australia Donna; Dr. Roberta Ronzitti, Consul of Italy in South Australia, and the Honorable Grace Portolesi, President of the South Australian Multicultural and Ethnic Affairs Commission who officially launched the project.

Ian Gibbins was in charge of all technical aspects of the presentation.

Australia Donna and the distinguished guests from the community and the field of education greeted and congratulated the women who took part to the project.


Australia Donna Fundraiser: Castagne e Vin Brule’

Sunday, 29th April, 2018
2:00 pm to 4:00 pm

Sinclair’s Gully Winery
288 Colonial Drive, Norton Summit, SA 5136

Chestnuts and Mulled Wine plus the beautiful voice of Nicolina Barcello from sell-out performances at this year’s Fringe Event to entertain us with some favourite Italian classics.

Dress warmly as the weather could be cold. Don’t worry about rain, we have cover.

This is Australia Donna’s annual event and everyone who comes always has a fabulous time.


$28.00 / $25.00 concession per ticket

For Tickets call Vera on 0412 413416 or email Australia Donna at vera.ubaldi@optusnet.com.au.

Proudly sponsored by Norwood FoodlandTony and Mark’s, Newton and La Casa Del Formaggio.


Language and Legacy

Exploring the legacy of Italian language across generations of women of Italian origin

The history of migration is rich in testimonies and documentations on the cultural mediation role that women of Italian origin play in their migration journey and in putting down roots in a new land.

In this series of conversations, six first generation women, together with their daughters and granddaughters, take us on an exploration of their experiences and of the meaning inherent in sharing their deep linguistic and cultural baggage.

Australia Donna pays homage to these women and all women of Italian origin for their outstanding capacity, strength and determination to keep alive this legacy for new generations.

Click here to see more about the project.

Caruso by Aislinn Rossi

Tonight my Grandmother is dancing to the Italian station
on her radio. Tonight,
I am letting the words of il caruso sink into my throat
although I do not understand them.
I know, only distantly,
that the song is about the sea.

You see, tonight- we’ve set the TV to mute, so we don’t have to hear
the way a politician speaks on the news, about a new wave of migrants
trying to make their homes here- these days

Nonna is so thin that she’s almost translucent,
but tonight, that just means I can see the steel beneath her skin
when she smiles, gentle,
and says I hope they are well.
lasciarli essere ben.

And tonight, the way her voice trips over her vowels,
trimming her consonants down like rose bushes
is reminding me that she still has a whole other language inside of her,

the way I have longing inside of me.
The way all these new migrants have hope inside of them.

So I have her teach me lines of poetry that slip sideways
from my clumsy English speaking mouth
and I dance with her to il caruso on a tinny old radio
and let her language fill my longing.

She says that in italy, they say that to each bird his nest is beautiful, which here,
means ‘there’s no place like home.’

So tonight,
I thank God that she had the strength to cross the sea
at only seventeen-
and grow a garden in this country,
knowing that here,
is a malleable concept.

© Aislinn Rossi 2017.

Aislinn’s performance of this poem won the 2017 Summer Slam poetry competition, hosted by SpokenWord SA.