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Italian Film Festival gala benefits children’s hospital

Tony DeNonno will headline “Strings Attached,” the opening gala of the Italian Film Festival.

Tony DeNonno will headline “Strings Attached,” the opening gala of the Italian Film Festival.

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — You don’t have to be Italian to help kids, savor wonderful Italian cuisine and enjoy heartwarming culture and music.

All that is offered next Sunday at the opening gala for the Italian Film Festival.

All proceeds will benefit the University of New Mexico Children’s Hospital.

Acclaimed New York documentary filmmaker and speaker in the humanities Tony DeNonno will headline the event.

He’ll take children of all ages with him on an enlightening journey into the life and legacy of puppeteers Mike and Aida Manteo, their children and grandchildren, a family bound by a Sicilian folk tradition that spans more than a century in New York.

A highlight will be the screening of DeNonno’s award-winning nationally broadcast documentary “It’s One Family: Knock on Wood.”

The gala will feature a buffet of Italian specialties and wines, accompanied by the guitar and mandolin strings of Albuquerque’s Tony Cesarano, who will play an array of Italian classics.

Also at the event, certified olive oil specialist and importer Diana Bruno will introduce her elixir, Una Vita Extra Virgin Olive Oil.

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