“I wanted to tell a story through song”, Naples Opera singer, runs coffee shop

Reporter: Jacquelyn Kisic
Published: Updated:

During the COVID-19 pandemic, international opera singer, Jenanette Donatti and her family moved to Naples, opening two coffee and sandwich shops.

A senior in high school, Jenanette Vecchione-Donatti, was sought after by multiple D-1 division schools to receive a basketball scholarship. In order to graduate high school, Donatti needed an additional high school elective, chorus or woodshop.

It was during chorus class that her high school teacher noticed something unique about her voice.

 “I was just making fun of Opera one day, and I went ahhahh (singing) really loud,” said Donati “The chorus teacher heard me and was like “I need to call your parents.”

After five months of training vocals, Donatti tried out for open auditions for The Julliard School music program. Donatti received a full scholarship for her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the world-famous arts institution.

Donatti put her music on the social media app Myspace, and she quickly gained followers and opportunities to travel around the world for her singing.

“I thought I wanted to do this. I want to present a story, a song, through my singing,” said Donatti “I tried to portray emotions that will let people feel something.” 

15 years ago, Jeanette met her now husband, Brendo Donatti, serving her a cup of espresso in Greenwich, Connecticut.

At the age of 18, Brendo immigrated from Brazil to America, his first job was washing dishes.

“When I met her,” said Brendo Donatti, “I was actually just two months of wanting to do something a little different.”

While enrolled at a local community college, Brendo decided to take a college elective to learn more about the art of Opera music.

Opera Naples holds their annual outdoor winter opera festival. This year’s theme was “Under the Stars.”

The company dedicated an entire show to Jeanette Donati so that those in the Naples area could listen to her powerful voice.

“There’s something special about singing at home and I never had that opportunity until now” said Donatti, “We just love having our business where we live, it’s really special.”

Winfield Coffee’s hours of operation are Monday through Friday, 7:00 am to 2:00 pm. From Saturday to Sunday, both locations are open at 8:00 am to 2:00 pm.

To read more about the Donatti’s story, click here.

Copyright ©2024 Fort Myers Broadcasting. All rights reserved.

This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without prior written consent.