The Federazione Canadese Italiana (FCI), York University’s one and only Italian student club, held its 11th Annual Masquerade Ball or Ballo in maschera at the Venetian Banquet Hall in Vaughan. The event took place Feb. 9 and celebrated and promoted Italian culture and in particular the Carnevale di Venezia. More than 250 York University students and faculty members in Italian Studies attended the ball.
Guests were entertained by York University grad Thomas Arthur. His accomplished musicianship on the accordion blended both traditional and modern Italian music. The lively evening featured students dressed in traditional Carnevale costumes and great Italian food. Faculty members also sported some traditional Venetian masks for the evening.
“Our annual ballo is one of many activities that our club hosts to showcase Italian culture on campus and in the greater community,” said FCI President Alessia Celebre, a fourth-year student in the Faculty of Liberal Arts &Professional Studies.
“I am happy to be part of FCI because I think it’s important for me to collaborate with students in my Italian language courses outside of the classroom,” said Carmine Guadagno, athletic director for FCI and a second-year student in the Faculty of Health who is taking courses in Italian Studies. “The ballo and other FCI activities allow me to use my Italian language skills to communicate with our donors for prizes but also with local media and guests.”
FCI has organized food drives and sporting activities, has participated in York University’s acclaimed Multicultural Week. The student club has successfully run many academic and cultural events in collaboration with the Italian Studies program in the Department of Languages, Literatures & Linguistics. FCI was also the recipient of the Club of the Year award three years in a row and, through its hard work and dedication, set up a bursary for Italian Studies students to study abroad.
“Created in 2007 and currently housed at Founders College, FCI has been extremely committed to student life at York University over the last decade and has created a vibrant student community embracing all cultures, all walks of life,” said Professor Roberta Iannacito-Provenzano, the club’s faculty adviser. “Our members energize the club immensely and help us do the things we do with passion and enthusiasm.”