Trio Lescano

Saturday, 13 September 2008

The father of one of our son’s best friends makes documentaries. He is Italian and most of the documentaries are about Italian subjects. Like the one about the Trio Lescano:

The text next to this YouTube video goes like this:

“‘Tulip Time’ is a documentary by Marco Di Stefani & Tonino Boniotti. By accident they came across the fascinating story of Trio Lescano, three Dutch-Jewish sisters, Alexandra, Judith and Ketty Leschan, (later officially changed in Alessandra, Giuditta and Caterinetta Lescano), who started mid ’30s as a backing vocal group in Italy, but very soon their talent as a strong trio was discovered. A contract at radiostation EIAR started their succesfull swinging career. But WWII and their Jewish background made an end to their succes and after the war in 1947 they went to Argentina. Caterinetta had already left the trio and was replaced by Maria Bria. A few years later the trio didn’t exist anymore, Caterinetta died of cancer, and Alexandra went back to Italy with only her memories of their succes and downfall. She died in 1987, only two people with tulips attended her funeral.”
All the images in this video come from the documentary. I have been asking Tonino for months for a copy, and last Friday I finally got a DVD that was made for a television broadcast (by MAX). Tonino couldn’t make a copy himself on his old computer. I didn’t want a copy, I wanted to buy the offical DVD-release, but maybe there isn’t any.
I checked the website, but even there are no DVD’s for sale. Tonino told me that he got most of the material from a guy who had worked with the Trio Lescano,. But he died halfway the making of the documentary and the stuff that he had of the Trio is now gone. In the documentary is about every piece of information and photo that could be found.
“Tulip time” is a story about three sisters living a dream for a while, being one of the most popular acts in Italy for almost a decade, and then are just as sudden almost completely forgotten.
I had never heard of Trio Lescano before Tonino told me about them. I hope that more movie footage shows up; the girls are said to have been pretty wild on stage. That is hard to imagine if you watch this excerpt from the movie “ECCO la radio”, one of the very few moving images on which the three sisters are still to bee seen.

I am often amazed how many people, even in the small circle that I live in, stumble upon great stories. like this one about Trio Lescano. It makes me wonder how much we actually ”know” of the world we live in. Or how little. We all have an idea of the world an I find it very hard, or even impossible, to have the full time realisation that my idea-of-the-world is at best a vague glimpse of what the world really is.

I am afraid that my idea-of-the-world is more like a parody on the real thing. But how to know the world as it really is in the absurd little time that I walk this planet, and with only two eyes and two ears? Life is a mission impossible.



2008-11-25 17:41:13

In 2005 the RVU broadcasted a Dutch radio documentary about Trio Lescano. It can be downloaded from

paolo piccardo

2009-01-31 06:41:21

check our website
for full story

Paolo Piccardo

2009-02-06 00:25:20

I sent you 2 mails about Lescanos.
Did you received it?