About Romanza

Romanza promotes and produces cultural events that showcase St. Augustine’s vibrant living culture, that enhance the quality of life for residents, and that create a positive lasting impression of the Nation’s Most Romantic City for visitors.


  • St. Augustine’s Romanza Festivale of the Arts– annual 10-day long celebration of St. Augustine Arts, Culture and Heritage
  • St. Augustine Celtic Music and Heritage Festival – annual large music and culture event
  • St. Augustine’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade – annual heritage family event. The ONLY  St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Northeast Florida!
  • Romanza Gatherings – monthly Arts & Culture mixers
  • Other Special Events

“Romanza” in Spanish, is a love song.

“Romanza” in Italian, is a love affair

“Romanza” in St. Augustine means Music, Dance, Theatre, Art, Cuisine, Heritage and Romance.

Romanza – St Augustine is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization.


Romanza’s Board of Directors and Officers

Albert Syeles

Albert Syeles is the Co-Founder of Romanza, the Board Chairman, President and CEO since the founding of the organization in July, 2009.  Albert is a film score composer/music director, songwriter and recording artist.  His web bio contains links to his professional recording activities.  He is a former Executive Director of SBC Communications (AT&T) and is also a certified Management Accountant. Albert is a graduate of Duquesne University and has lived in downtown St. Augustine with his wife, Pat, since 2005.

Kathleen Vande Berg

Romanza Board Member as of November 2011. Since moving to Florida in 2003, Kathleen has been active as the Conductor of the St. Augustine Community Chorus, the St. Augustine Chamber Singers, the Flagler College Singers, the organist/choir director at St. Cyprian’s Episcopal Church, and accompanist and Music Director for First Coast Opera.

Kathleen has taught General Classroom Music, piano, guitar, music history and choral music at all school levels, as well as at Flagler College. She is married to Dr. James L. Vande Berg and has 2 daughters, Jocelyn and Kirsten.  She is a graduate of Central College and Georgia State University.

In her application for the Board, Kathleen wrote: The concept of Romanza excites me because it has the potential to make St. Augustine a haven for the arts, to bring first class performances to the area and to add another dimension to the tourism industry. The concept of ‘Romanza Festivale(s)’ will provide the umbrella needed to forge a new dimension for the arts in St Augustine. I would like to be part of this exciting venture.”

Anne Kraft

Romanza Board Member as of November 2012.  Anne is a co-founder of The Limelight Theatre and worked there in every capacity of theater (acting, directing, teaching and administration) for 14 years until retiring in 2006.  She also served as Treasurer of the St. Augustine Community Chorus from 2010-2012.

In addition to serving on the Romanza Board, Anne is currently a member of the Limelight Theatre Advisory Board (2006-present) and Vice President of A Classic Theatre (2009-present).  She is also a member of Actors’ Equity Association and the Screen Actors Guild.

A native of St. Augustine, Anne attended Ketterlinus High School and Florida State University.  She went to NYC at 19, where she worked  in a variety of theater, TV, and film opportunities, as well as a wide range of businesses for 25+ years.

Anne currently works part-time as legal assistant at the Gail E. Andrews Law Firm.  She is the mother of one daughter and grandmother of three.

Pat Syeles

Pat has been the Romanza Secretary and Treasurer since 2011. She also serves on the Celtic Music & Heritage Festival Committee and is the Romanza Newsletter editor and publisher. Pat is a retired estate planning and administration paralegal, formerly with law firms in Washington, D.C. New Haven, CT and Pittsburgh, PA.

Romanza’s Board of Advisors:

Doni Dowie (Sister Cities / Lexes Associates)

Benedetta Dubetz (Amici’s Restaurant)

George Gardner (former St. Augustine Mayor)

Lorna MacDonald (Raintree Restaurant)

Jean Rahner (A Classic Theatre)

Robert Silverman (Winter Properties, Atlanta, GA)

James Vande Berg (President, Founder of Compassionate St. Augustine)