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Songs and arias include “O sole mio”, “Ave Maria,” “White Christmas,” “Santa Baby,” “O mio babbino caro,” “Brindisi,” “Mambo Italiano,” and more.


Over the past 17 years, tens of thousands of fans have experienced Cristina Fontanelli's Christmas in Italy, a musical journey through popular Italian songs, arias, Christmas classics and dance, in New York City. This year, the award-winning singer, actress and PBS-TV host, decided to share this joyous concert - far and wide - to fill even more hearts with the spirit and reason of the season. For the first time, Ms. Fontanelli has released never-before-seen archival footage edited into a one-hour highlights special from her 13th Christmas in Italy® concert for streaming on A preview of the concert is on YouTube HERE. Tickets, which can be purchased HERE or by calling (646) 481-9890, start at $15.

"Out of this terribly challenging times has come a very positive outcome. We are now excited to be able to present, for the very first time ever, this same culturally enriching holiday experience that will be sure to lift spirits and bring tidings of comfort and joy into the comfort of your own home through the power of streaming," said Ms. Fontanelli. "I began this beloved NYC Holiday tradition as a love-letter to my heritage and to help individuals and families with children to experience the joy of growing up Italian at Christmastime. This endeavor takes on even more meaning this year, as we face the challenges of celebrating the Holidays during these dark days."

The streaming concert, which was recorded on December 18, 2016, at the Washington Irving Landmark Theater in New York City, features songs and arias that include "O sole mio", "Ave Maria," "White Christmas," "Santa Baby," "O mio babbino caro," "Brindisi," "Mambo Italiano," and more.

The 75-member cast includes Ornella Fado; Maestro David Maiullo (piano) ; John La Barbera (guitar/mandolin); Batty Mitterhoff (mandolin), Jay Posipanko (mandolin); Angelo Coppola (accordion); Blake Friedman (tenor); The Christmas In Italy Choir®; Plu Sayampol and His Dancers: Katherine McClintic-Weiss; Maiko Harada; The Children of the Little Language Studio of Dyker Heights, Brooklyn (Alberta Gulotta, Teacher) singing the most famous Italian Christmas carol "Tu scendi dalle stele" ("You came down from the stars"); The Children of the Jersey City Ballet (Judith Elins, Teacher/Choreographer) dancing to "Dominick the Italian Christmas Donkey"; and Jon Reinhold (Santa Claus).

This year's streaming show is presented by The Cristina Fontanelli Foundation. The 2016 live show was co-produced by Leah Lane. Production credits include: choreography by Plu Sayampol and Judith Elins; lighting design by Mitchel Ost, hair & make-up by Lorraine Altamura, video and editing by Bob Johnson, sound editing by Brian Bauers, flowers by Luigi Lombardi of Bel Fiore Greenhouses and first act gown provided through the generosity of Santa-Bannon-Shillea.

Christmas in Italy® has become a signature New York City tradition that signals the importance of cultural preservation through music. Each year performance opportunities are awarded to young children as they join Ms. Fontanelli on stage in singing Italy's greatest classical and popular songs. Ms. Fontanelli brings the magic of the holiday season to life and instills joy and values to younger generations through her dynamic artistry and her passion for her heritage.

Cristina Fontanelli has become an international personality through her recordings and appearances on-stage, radio and TV. Her appearances include PBS-TV host for Andrea Bocelli, Il Volo and Michael Buble television specials. She has appeared on CBS Weekend NY, has won best actress in the Cutting Room International Film Festival (2018) and the Venus International Film Festival (Las Vegas, July 2019) for her role in SANTINO, a NIAF/Russo Brothers Production grantee. She is a regular at Feinstein's/54 Below. Cristina sings "Vissi d'Arte" at Feinsteins at the Regency and has shared stages with Tony Bennett. Other television appearances include co-hosting on CBS-TV and starring opposite Kevin James in a CBS promo special. She has sung title roles with the Palm Beach Opera, and internationally with the Hong Kong and Cairo Opera's and has been featured soloist with the Boston Pops and the St. Louis Symphony performing in major concert halls throughout the U.S. and the world, including the Lincoln and Kennedy Centers, Carnegie Hall, the Philadelphia Academy of Music, Boston Symphony Hall and Guild Hall in East Hampton. She has been named one of the American Academy of Dramatic Arts most notable alumni (along with Robert Redford, Danny DeVito and Anne Hathaway); has performed at the White House as part of President Clinton's holiday celebration, and Cristina opened the 2005 Stars and Stripes Inaugural Ball for President George W. Bush.

Her awards include the "Lifetime Achievement Award in the Arts" from the Order Sons of Italy in America (previous honoree Luciano Pavarotti). Cristina has been an on-air radio guest on WOR radio with Joe Piscopo and on Bloomberg and Sirius Satellite Radio. She is included in the book The Life and Times of Mickey Rooney (Simon and Schuster, 2015) for singing "Happy Birthday" at Mickey's 90th birthday party (Donald Trump, Regis Philbin, Tony Bennett were in attendance). She was signed by platinum-record winning producer, Sandy Linzer, to record Cristina Fontanelli Sings Great Italian Favorites.

Cristina produces and stars in Christmas in Italy® which gives more than 80 children performance opportunities every year. Last year, the production sold out at Carnegie Hall's Zankel Hall. The show's "mission" includes raising funds for children's causes through The Cristina Fontanelli Foundation. Cristina appears annually with Opera & Broadway of the Hamptons and has opened the ceremonies at the Hampton Classic. She sings and entertains in nine languages. For more information, visit

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