Franca Valeri

Franca Valeri (born 31 July 1920) is an Italian actress.

Franca Valeri
Alma Franca Maria Norsa

(1920-07-31) 31 July 1920
Years active1949–2014
Vittorio Caprioli
(m. 1960; div. 1974)
Partner(s)Maurizio Rinaldi (?–?)
ChildrenStefania Bonfadelli

Life and career

Born in Milan as Alma Franca Maria Norsa, she was able to survive the Holocaust in Milan with her non-Jewish mother due to a fake I.D. which purported that she was the illegitimate daughter of a gentleman from Pavia. Her father and brother were able to flee to Switzerland.[1]

Norsa adopted the surname Valeri in the 1950s as an homage to French critic and poet Paul Valéry.[2]

Valeri started her career on the radio, where she created the characters of Signorina Cesira and Signora Cecioni.[2] She co-starred in such films as The Sign of Venus or Il vedovo, although most of her characters are supporting role.

In the 1960s Valeri also frequently worked for Italian TV. Directed by Antonello Falqui, she starred in Studio Uno, Le divine and Sabato Sera.

In the 1980s and early 1990s she starred in a series of successful commercials for Pandoro Melegatti, which were well received and stretched over a number of years (pandoro being a seasonal product tied to the Christmas holidays).

Despite old age, she's still very active on the Italian theatrical stage. Across the season 2005–2006 she performed her own monologue La Vedova di Socrate ("Socrate's Widow") and Les Bonnes, by Jean Genet. In January 2008, she played the role of Solange in Les Bonnes at Milan's Piccolo Teatro.



  1. Interview with Franca Valeri (Kolot, 23 giugno 2014).
  2. Laura Peja. Strategie del comico. Le Lettere, 2009. ISBN 886087212X.

Further reading

  • Emanuela Martini, Franca Valeri: una signora molto snob, Lindau, 2000, ISBN 887180290X
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