Memoriams – East Harlem Giglio Society
Giglio Society Member 2020
Heather Cuccia Brooklyn, New York
Giglio Society Member 2020
Alfred Cernuto Clermont, Florida
Giglio Society Member 2020
Vincent Laucella Corona, New York
Giglio Society Member 2020
Joanne Filardo Toms River, New Jersey
Giglio Society Member 2020
Bob Maida Yonkers, New York
Giglio Society Member 2020
Dianne Witkowski New York, New York
Giglio Society Member 2020
John Palmieri Staten Island, New York
Giglio Society Member 2020
Michael LaGreca New York, New York
Giglio Society Member 2020
JoAnna Aniello New York, New York
Giglio Society Member 2020
John Amelio Bronx, New York



The Giglio’s Living Legend

Designer, Builder, Composer and Mentor, Mr. Carmine “Tony” Cappola

East Harlem Giglio Society Memoriams | Manhattan | New York City (NYC)

Tony Cappola was a true gentlemen from East Harlem who loved his beloved Sant’ Antonio and the various Giglio feast especially the Giglio feast on 106th and 108th street. He was always available to lend a East Harlem Giglio Society Memoriams | Manhattan | New York City (NYC)hand in anything he had to do to make the feast successful whether it was building, constructing faces, writing and composing music etc. Although he was much younger Tony was a good friend with my grandfather Gioacchino Vivolo the 1st capo Paranza of the Bruscianese Society of 106th street along with many other Paisan’s who were involved with the feast and lived in East Harlem. Those old timers lived for the day the feast would return every year!

It is with great pride that we honor one of the true legendary fathers of East Harlem Giglio Society Memoriams | Manhattan | New York City (NYC)the Giglio tradition in the USA, Mr. Carmine “Tony” Cappola.Tony Cappola was born in 1918, on 108th Street in East Harlem. The first Giglio he built was in 1928 on 106th Street, when he was only 10 years of age. This was only the beginning of this living legend.

East Harlem Giglio Society Memoriams | Manhattan | New York City (NYC)

During World War II, with the majority of the Paranza in the service, there was no Dancing of the Giglio. Then in 1947, Tony Cappola, along with his Brother-in-Law Ralph Prisco collected donations in East Harlem, built the Giglio and brought this beautiful tradition back to 106th Street.

Tony not only built Giglio’s for East Harlem, he designed and constructed Giglio’s for Brooklyn, Astoria, Cliffside Park, New Jersey and the Bronx. Tony’s accomplishments did not end here; he also wrote Giglio songs, both lyrics and music, for all these feasts.

In 1955, Tony composed the first Giglio song for 106th Street, called “O Giglio Di Quagliune”. He also composed the first Giglio song for 108th Street called “O Giglio Di Alegria”.

For the past 80 years, Tony Cappola has truly been a mentor, builder, design consultant and composer for all the Giglio Feasts in the New York/New Jersey area. His miniature Giglio’s are considered priceless collector’s items to all of us who grew up around this beautiful tradition.

Together with The Giglio Society of East Harlem and The Sons of San Paolino di Nola, originally from Glen Cove, NY now from Franklin Square, NY were blessed when this wonderful man wrote 2 songs for our first feast. This living legend has touched the hearts of Paranza everywhere for generations. Tony Cappola will always be a part of every Giglio that is danced in America.

R.I.P. Tony Cappola. You will not be forgotten…

In loving Memory of East Harlem’s First Capo Paranza Gioacchino Vivolo

by Phil Bruno

First Capo Paranza Gioacchino Vivolo
Gioacchino Vivolo

The first Giglio feast on 106th street in East Harlem started approximately in 1908. My grandfather, Gioacchino Vivolo is credited for being the first Capo Paranza on 106th Street.

He came to America in December of 1907 at the age of 26 aboard the “Re d Italia” steamship leaving behind a wife (Concetta) and a baby girl (Anna) with the love of Sant’ Antonio and the passion for the Giglio. He eventually sent for his wife and daughter after he settled on 106th street in East Harlem in 1908. He along with his brother Rocco Vivolo were members of the “Bruscianese Society” and were influential in bringing this tradition to East Harlem from Brusciano, Italy along with others from that town.

In 1925 a cousin in Brusciano who was aware of my grandfather’s involvement in the Sant’ Antonio Giglio feast sent him a gift of a life size Saint Anthony statue from his hometown of Brusciano which was used in the annual feast for 30 years. That statue is still in our family today.

The Giglio feast of Sant’ Antonio continued on and off on 106th street until 1955. After 2 years the feast moved 2 blocks north to 108th street where in ran until 1971 under the direction of Angelo Granata.

In Loving Memory of the Legendary Capo Paranza Angelo Granata

Written by Director-Writer–Producer Tony De Nonno – June 13. 2001

Legendary Capo Paranza Angelo Granata

In East Harlem on March 15, 1917, Angelo Granata, the youngest of nine children was brought into the world by a mid-wife to the delight of his mother Annunziata and his father Antonio. His parents, along with tens of thousands of their paesani born in the town of Brusciano, Italy (located in the Campania region near Naples) established a strong community between 106th and 108th Streets in East Harlem. From the 1880’s to the mid-1960’s East Harlem was home to the largest Italian American community in America. With a quiet determination, these immigrants struggled to keep their most treasured traditions alive in their new homeland. This was especially true with a rite that was inaugurated in 1875 in Brusciano, Italy when a young father, Zi Cecca DeFalco made a vow to San Antonio that if his dying son were to survive, he would Dance a Giglio in his honor. At the turn of the century, prior to Angelo Granata’s birth, the immigrants of Brusciano, Italy kept Zi Cecca DeFalco’s vow alive by establishing “O Giglio di Parulano,” the Dance of the Giglio tradition in East Harlem. No one at the time realized that over the next six decades this baby named Angelo would become one of the greatest inspirations of this ancient rite known as the “Giglio di San Antonio” in America.

As Angelo grew so too did his special passion for this glorious ritual. In 1947, determined to stand above the fray, the 30-year-old Angelo Granata established himself as a great leader in the East Harlem tradition by overseeing the building of ‘his’ first Giglio on 106th Street – which kept this glorious tradition alive. In the mid-fifties, when the Dancing of the Giglio no longer became tenable on 106th Street, it was Angelo Granata who took the helm and brought the tradition to 108th Street in 1957, where it endured under his leadership until 1971. His love for ‘oou-jeel’ tradition was ageless and timeless.

If there was one moment which symbolizes Angelo Granata’s great leadership as a Capo Paranza, it was an event that took place during the early 1960’s. In the middle of the East Harlem feast, Angelo Granata stunned the throngs of thousands by handpicking – 32 lifters and assigning just eight men to the four corners of the Giglio. Angelo called out “Musica!” Phil Caccavale and his legendary band, including its lead singer, Tuddy Ferrara burst into a jubilant Italian folk song which inspired these chosen few paranza to remarkably lift their 65 foot-high moving monument to faith with unbridled power and passion. After the rousing cheers and applause died down, Angelo Granata ordered all of the remaining 120 men back under the Giglio. From that moment forward, the Giglio was danced with a passion and harmony that was unforgettable in America.

Even in his eighties Angelo was often seen in the trenches lifting the Giglio right along with his beloved paranza. One of the greatest Capo Paranzas in American history, Angelo Granata supported the Dance of the Giglio tradition right up until the very end whenever and wherever the tradition took place. He would close each Giglio feast by dancing passionately on a table to the tune of his beloved 108th Street Song. Time after time, this legendary Capo Paranza would tap his heart like a drum, beam in ecstasy, yell, cry, urge and inspire us all with his cane to dance this glorious Giglio with the grace and devotion it justly deserved.

He danced the dance with all his heart and soul, and showed us the way. Precious and timeless, irreplaceable and indefatigable, Angelo Granata’s vibrant love and devotion touched us all — in East Harlem, in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, Astoria, Queens, Cliffside Park, New Jersey and recently on Long Island. No matter where you go the name and memory of Angelo Granata is a symbol of love, honor and devotion. We pray that the lord Jesus Christ, San Antonio, San Paolino and Our Lady of Mt. Carmel are embracing you, as you embraced us all. I know I speak for all those who have loved this tradition and were fortunate enough to know you – may God Bless and embrace you and your family always Angelo Granata – you will live in our hearts forever.

The Icon of East Harlem – A Memorian to Father Peter Rofrano

On May 19, 2007 East Harlem,N.Y.C. lost it’s great icon. Father Peter J. Rofrano of the Pallottine Fathers returned to our Lord after almost 91 years. For three quarters of those years he spent living and working in East Harlem. At the moment of his death, Father Rofrano was the pastor of Our Lady of Mount Carmel Shrine Church on 115th Street between 1st and Pleasant Avenues.

Father Peter Rofrano was born on June 11,1916. He grew up on East 109th street. He was an altar boy at Saint Ann’s church on E.110th street. He grew up together with the 106th and 108th street Giglio’s. On July 30,1939 Father was ordained to the priesthood of Jesus Christ in Rome,Italy. You knew darn well that East Harlem and the Giglio were in his blood. You knew this because he wanted the Giglio back in East Harlem and after an absence of nearly thirty years his wish was granted. His dream came true with the lift on July 16, 2000. The Giglio lift on August 12th, 2007 was dedicated to the Icon of East Harlem who brought so many joy, love and laughter and in the end…the Giglio to those living in East Harlem today. Father Rofrano, you will be missed!



The Giglio Society of East Harlem is a devoted group of individuals who have dedicated their lives to honor Sant’ Antonio.




East Harlem Giglio society is a diverse religious and cultural organization of Catholics.




The Giglio Society of East Harlem current Board of Directors, Capo Paranza’s, Lieutenants for our Giglio Boys and Girls.




The Giglio Society of East Harlem is a devoted group of individuals who have dedicated their lives to honor Sant’ Antonio.



Society News

11 Mar '20

2020 East Harlem Giglio Feast Dates

The warm weather is here, which means the 2020 Giglio Season is right around the corner! Mark your calendars for the  2020 East Harle

Brusciano – New York: Phil Bruno is # 1 Chief Paranza of Giglio in East Harlem 2020 07 Dec '19

Brusciano – New York: Phil Bruno is # 1 Chief Paranza of Giglio in East Harlem 2020

The Giglio Society of East Harlem in New York announced via social media from the FB East Harlem Giglio page and from its website the invest