Claudio Tanca was born in Rome, the Eternal City. He has spent more than half of his life abroad, in Belgium, France, and since 2011 in the United States of America. For more than two years Claudio has taught Italian to children at Language Stars in Alexandria and Gaithersburg. He is interested in communications, international relations, and international business and holds a Master Degree in International Business and Government Relations from Georgetown University, Washington, DC; a degree in Political Science from LUISS Guido Carli, Rome, Italy; and Certificat d’Études Politiques from Institut d’études politiques, Aix-en-Provence, France.
Claudio also works in communications and media relations for an international tobacco-control NGO, sometimes traveling to Latin America, Europe, and South Asia to teach activists how to fight multinational tobacco companies. He likes Italian cuisine – some people say he is a good cook – and Italian wine. He loves soccer and is a loyal supporter of AS Roma. He works and lives in Washington, DC. He is fluent in Italian, English, and French and proficient in Spanish.
Cristina was born in Rome, raised in several beautiful Italian towns and lived in different European countries. She holds a MSc in Economics from Toulouse School of Economics, France.
For over a decade she was a manager and consultant involved in aid projects for donors and governments in emerging and developing countries. Her consulting assignments often implied delivering training to clients, a task that Cristina mostly enjoyed. She then decided to change career and became a teacher in high schools in France. She speaks English, French and Slovene.
She is a great lover of Tuscan focaccia, Sicilian arancini, Italian Renaissance art and a fierce Ferrari supporter.
Instructor, Marketing & Events Coordinator
Born and raised in Chioggia, an island in the Venetian Lagoon, Dario is an archaeologist and Italian teacher with a Bachelor’s degree in Cultural Heritage Conservation (2012) and a Master’s degree in Archaeology (2015) from the University Ca’ Foscari of Venice. He spent his academic years between Italy, Belgium and the United States before moving permanently to the DC area at the end of 2017.
Dario started his teaching career training archaeology students while working for the Ca’ Foscari University Anthropology Laboratory. He also had experience as substitute teacher for the Italian public school system, where he taught Italian language, literature, history, art and art history to students between 9 and 14 years old.
His passion for cultural heritage and Italian history was useful for his research studies, which allowed him to publish papers in Italian archaeological journals and present his theses’ research at the Green Templeton College of the University of Oxford.
Dario joined the Italian Cultural Society in Fall 2018, an opportunity that has helped him use his passions to promote real Italian culture in America. He was elected Secretary of the Board in 2020.
Director of the ICS Music School
Felicia Toscano is a classical guitarist, from Taranto, Italy. She started taking guitar lessons since she was 10 with Master Duilio Bellone.
She is a teaching veteran in several County Public Schools in Italy . She holds a National Board Certified teacher of Italian for elementary school (2006). She holds Certificate ICon AP Italian Language and Culture as a Tutor. She taught Italian language at G. Tosi elementary school, D. Purificato Elementary and Middle school , and Gramsci school in Rome.
She entered the local Conservatorio “G. Paisiello” in Taranto (which is Paisiello’s native town) ranking first among the entrance exam candidates. In Taranto, she studied with Master Pino Forresu, graduating in 1999 with a Masters Degree in Music. Than she studied Musical Interpretation with Senio and Alirio Diaz. She got a Permanent Certification as Music Teacher for Public Schools at “Roma 3” University in Rome.
She graduated as Orff-Schulwerk Teacher Education at S.I.M.E.O.S. School in Verona, and she attended Music Therapy Courses in Assisi (PG). She moved to Rome and she taught in several Public Middle and High Schools. She was on the board of private music schools and cultural associations such as “Music Risonanze Association” Rome – EUR and “Music and Arts Association” Fonte Laurentino – EUR.
From 2015 to 2017, she taught as Adjunct Guitar Professor at the Conservatorio Santa Cecilia of Rome. She was a volunteer teacher in the Down Syndrome children association in Rome and the Spastic Association in Taranto. In the course of her career, she has been awarded many first-place prizes in national and international guitar classic and folk music competitions: Spanish Music Festival of Puglia, Music Festival “Baroque City”, Guitar Festival of Fiuggi, Great Jubilee of 2000, International Competition Ferrero Luigi Riva dei Tessali, and European Music Competition “Pythagoras.”
Felicia formed several artistic partnerships with Spanish orchestras such as Acords Joves Orchestra de Montilivi Girona directed from Euken Master Imanol Ledesma. She appeared on stage both as soloist and with orchestras and various chamber ensembles. She is a highly distinguished and well-known seminar senior lecturer in the area of Mediterranean rites and guitar music analysis.
With her innovative and lively approach to music education, Felicia Toscano founded and directed Canarios Guitar Orchestra, which she conducted in several concerts, competitions, and performances. Felicia believes in fostering a tuneful, beautiful, artful learning community based on music education, and works as a concert performer and teacher in Italy and US. She also has a certification to teach in elementary, middle and high schools in Italy.
She lives in Bethesda, Maryland.
Workshop & Summer Camp Coordinator
I was born in Bergamo and I came to Washington DC in 2009. Since then I work for my two children and I love to organize all types of activities that reconnect them to Italy in order to keep their Italian roots strong and alive. Since 2012 I conduct the “Nati Per Leggere DC” project where I read aloud in Italian to kids in the public libraries of DC and Northern VA. I am an active member of the MAPACI team (MAmma e PApa’ per la Cultura Italiana) of Italians in DC, a non profit organization, of which I am also a board member. With “Le DIVE”, another non profit organization in DC, I organized various activities for kids always themed towards the Italian traditions. Since 2017 I collaborate with Ente Gestore – Casa Italiana Language School, teaching Italian language to the kids in the elementary grades. I like reading books, going to classic and modern ballet, opera, musicals, visit museums and I love to prepare cakes with my kids. I have a solar and positive attitude. I strongly believe that a smile is worth way more than any word!
Born in Benevento. Lover of music and dance, of all artistic and cultural disciplines. Graduated in literature from Suor Orsola Benincasa of Naples, freelance journalist registered in the register of journalists in Rome.
She moved to Latina at the age of 25 years old where she will start working for a local broadcaster in Latina and Rome: “Lazio TV”, like a presenter.She taught Italian, history and geography at the middle and high schools of his adopted city.She obtained the certification of “Professional civil mediator” at ADR Futura in Latina.At the same time she was manager of the “Tam Tam Comunication” marketing and communication agency, a family business, where she was in charge of communication and creation of commercials spots.
Together with her husband they decide to open a business in the United States where she now lives with her family. Her maxim: “Never limit knowledge”.
Mariana P. Tacheva
Mariana was born and raised in Bulgaria in a beautiful city, called Sliven. After receiving her Diploma for Administrative employees at the Economics High School she obtained the Diploma for the Primary School Education from the Pedagogical College. She worked as a Teacher in Primary School for more than 8 years. In 2000 she earned Master Degree in Public Administration from Technical University of Varna, Bulgaria. After one year she moved to Italy, following her husband and his work. She lived in Milano for five year and then she moved to Piacenza, Emilia Romagna. This is the city in which she gave birth to her second son, the city where she and her family acquired dual citizenship and the city where their home is located. In Italy Mariana continued to study and work with children. In 2010 she received Certificate for Social Worker for Childcare from Istituto Cortivo di Padua. She also earned a Certification of Italian as a Foreign Language (CILS), Level Four – C2, from the University for Foreign Students in Siena.
In March 2017 Mariana moved with her family to the US. She lives in Reston and continues to work with the children. She teaches Italian in the Private Language School “Language Stars” in Alexandria and Fairfax Centers. She is very proud to become an Italian Teacher to promote the Italian culture.
Mariana loves to swim, ride bicycle and traveling. She enjoys cooking and she loves Italian, Mediterranean and Balkan food. Mariana is interested in criminology, psychology, photography, poetry and languages.