The Early Days
Loredana Cunti is a first-generation Canadian, born in Toronto and raised in the countryside of Kleinburg, Ontario. She is the middle child between two brothers and fondly remembers feeding chickens as one of her chores when she was younger. Loredana's first language is the Neapolitan dialect. She didn't have any stories read to her as a child since her parents had just immigrated from Italy and were still learning English, but she remembers the first children's book she ever loved - WHERE THE WILD THINGS ARE by Maurice Sendak.
More of a social butterfly than a bookworm, Loredana would often get into trouble at school for talking too much. Besides getting laryngitis on a regular basis, it eventually served her well when she began winning public speaking contests.
Like many children who come from an immigrant family, Loredana experienced the frustrations of wanting to fit in. Going to school with smelly Italian sandwiches and being called ‘fatso’ for eating a few too many of those sandwiches were parts of the daily life that reminded her that she felt different.
Today, she tells stories that reflect these feelings and celebrates her uniqueness because of them. She hopes to share qualities to promote growth in the next generation of young people - resilience, perseverance, self-belief and individuality.
Food & Family
Loredana was always surrounded by Italian women cooking and preparing food. In winter, she would watch them make sausages. In the spring, they would plant the seeds for vegetables. In summer, time to harvest and pickle. Autumn: bushel upon bushel of tomato sauce and planting of the garlic. For many years Loredana didn’t celebrate these Italian rituals and instead saw them as ‘chores’. Now, she realizes just how lucky she is to have this knowledge. She aims to inspire people to learn from on how to cook those cherished classic family dishes before the secrets are lost forever.
While living in Paris, Loredana was inspired to learn the basics of haute cuisine. She finished the first module at Le Cordon Bleu but quickly realized she loved the simplicity of Italian food. Having never baked but realizing everyone loves cake, Loredana felt motivated to continue learning and went on to earn her Le Cordon Bleu Pastry Chef certification.
How did Loredana get to work with an astronaut? She just called one!
Inspired by her own kids dreams of going to space, Loredana came up with a kids TV show idea featuring five kids who were training to be astronauts. She realized that with little knowledge of space concepts and without a real-life astronaut on board, the TV show wouldn’t live up to its full potential so Loredana cold called Canadian Astronaut, Dave Williams. It took some time to get in touch but she did not give up and once she presented her TV show to Dr. Dave, the planets aligned and they formed a partnership and they continue to collaborate on projects and speaking engagements.