As a powerful soul singer in English, Spanish and Italian, Iliana’s journey of becoming a renowned international artist has begun.
One of those key moments along the way started in her hometown of Chicago where she was chosen to represent her city in the CW’s singing competition TV show “The Next: Fame is at your Doorstep.” Iliana won the runner-up finalist spot, and more importantly received a once in a lifetime opportunity to be mentored by music icon Gloria Estefan. The experiences of being on a national TV show as well as receiving insight from one of her musical idols were invaluable.
After her appearance on “The Next,” Iliana was featured as a singing and performance coach on season 13 of MTV’’s Emmy Award winning reality series “Made” which aired world wide in 2013.
In 2014, three of Iliana’s original songs were chosen as semi-finalists in the International Songwriting Competition (ISC). Ultimately, her song “Then I Met You” was named a finalist in the RnB Category and placed Top 10 overall, out of 18,000 songs. In 2015, her Pop song “The Right Kind of Love,” was named a Top 10 finalist in the Unsigned Only Songwriting Competition.
This year, Iliana’s contribution as the vocalist on the remix of the classic disco tune “Last Night A DJ Saved My Life” (produced by Antonio Giacca & JJ Flores) helped propel the song to a #2 peak spot on the dance charts for multiple weeks. The song remains in the Top 50. Currently, Iliana’s first single “Predictable,” is on iTunes.
Iliana has also performed on stages across Europe, Mexico, and the US, for a number of annual festivals, events, and as an opening act for European stars, Zucchero and Il Volo.
See the “EXTRAS” section below for a complete list of career highlights and achievements.
EARLY LIFE & CAREER
Dancing and singing in her crib to Gloria Estefan, as well as a mix of Italian music and Motown, Iliana’s musical style was influenced early by Latin rhythms, romance languages and soul. Singing in English, Italian and Spanish, there’s a lot Iliana can cover musically. Following her father, Enzo, who sang and entertained nightly in his Italian restaurant “Sicily Restaurant” in Chicago, for 30 years, she sang for her first audience at the restaurant in front of guest Frankie Avalon. After that, she continued to pursue singing in the church choir and in child-lead roles in the high school’s musicals. She sang any and everything, and eventually became one of the most requested independent vocalists to sing at festivals, weddings, and private events in the midwest.
Iliana has worked with a wide range of producers and musical talents–from Gloria Estefan on the “The Next,” to Norwegian-Grammy Award winning producer Jarl Aanestad, song-writing dynamos Micah Wilshire, Todd Wright, Jeff Shum, Dayyon Alexander, and Mando Ortega writing her own songs. She has performed on stages across Europe, Mexico, and the US, for a number of annual festivals, events, and as an opening act for European stars, Zucchero and Il Volo.
- “There’s a lot of impressive things about you (Iliana), you do sing in Spanish, you do sing in Italian…you ain’t scared, you come with it. All these people went crazy for you, half of these people are for somebody else. But it doesn’t matter. You brought it. That’s what it takes.” – John Rich, after Iliana’s performance of “One More Night” on CW’s ‘The Next’
- “You are Italian soul, girl. I’m your number one fan already, Iliana. It doesn’t matter what happens, all of you are winners, but you’re a star, girl.” -Gloria Estefan
- “I would have to disagree, I’m her number one fan.”– Joe Jonas
- “You know I’m your number one fan! You don’t sing, you saaang…I look forward to you performing each and every time….You never cease to let me down. You ARE a star.” -Nelly
- “Your diversity in music is so great, and when you have a record I can’t wait to listen to it because there are going to be do many different types of songs on there.”– Joe Jonas
• 2015 (August: Los Angeles, California)-Iliana’s song “The Right Kind of Love” earns a spot as a finalist in the Pop category of the Unsigned Only Music Competition, and ultimately receives honorable mention out of 7,000 songs, and places top 10 in the “Fandemonium” contest.
• 2015 (April: Los Angeles, California)-Iliana’s songs “Then I Met You” “Dadada” and “Right Kind of Love” become semi-finalists in the International Songwriting Competition out of 18,000 songs with “Then I Met You” ultimately making it into the finals and receiving an honorable mention in the RnB category. “Then I Met You” also placed top 10 out of 320 entrants in the “People’s Voice” category.
• 2015 (March: Los Angeles, California)-Iliana joins 52Blend Management Company
• 2013 (August: Chicago, Illinois)-Iliana signs management deal with Kevin Jonas Sr. and “The Jonas Group.”
• 2013 (July: Johnson City, Tennessee)- MTV “Made” Coach, Season 13, Episode 20 (Singer:Katie)
• 2013 (July: Chicago, Illinois)- 1 of 5 Judges for the Columbus Day Pageant
• 2013 (June: Chicago, Illinois)- Recorded the jingle for the game “Monopoly”/ “Oreo Cookie”
• 2013 (April: Chicago, Illinois)- MC for the Ronald McDonald House Charities Event at the Harris Theater.
• 2013 (March: Chicago, Illinois)- Co-headliner for showcase at the Hard Rock Cafe Chicago for 300+ guests.
• 2013 (February: Dallas, Texas)- Headliner for the Crown Imports Summit-500+ guests
• 2012 (November: Youtube)- Released her cover of “Skyfall” on Youtube- over 125,000 views and counting.
• 2012 (June- October: Chicago Il & Los Angeles, CA)- Finalist to represent Chicago on the CW hit television music competition show “The Next.” Mentored by Gloria Estefan, Iliana came in 2nd place, beating out 22 others–1 million US viewers per episode. Performed at Chicago’s “The Vic Theater” and Los Angeles’s “The Orpheum Theater.”
• 2012 (August: Milwaukee, Wisconsin)- Performed an hour set for 3 days at the 35th Annual Milwaukee Festa Italiana, in Milwaukee, Wisconsin on the “Briggs & Stratton Big Backyard Stage” for 300+ guests.
• 2012 (March: Chicago, Il)- Iliana asked to feature on 2 tracks for the official Carl Davis Tribute album and covered “Dear Lover” originally by Mary Wells.
• 2012 (January: YouTube)- In January of 2012, the music video for her original song “Underrated” with artist T.L. Williams, was released to much acclaim.
• 2011 (October:Milwaukee, Wisconsin)- Performed in Milwaukee, Wisconsin at “The Milwaukee Theater” as the opening act for Universal Recording artist, Il Volo, (the three young tenors who have appeared on American Idol, Entourage, and Ellen amongst other shows), for 600+ guests.
• 2011 (September: Sicily)- Headlined the 4th night of concerts of a 7 day festival in Sicily, Italy for 1000+ guests.
• 2011 (May: Chicago, Illinois)- Performed as the opener and closer for the Driehaus Design Initiative fashion show for 200+ guests.
• 2011 (April: Chicago, Illinois)- Performed at the Joint Civic Committee of Italian Americans Women’s Division Fashion show fundraiser for 400+ guests.
• 2010 (September: Hoboken, New Jersey)- Performed an hour set in Hoboken, New Jersey for the Hoboken Italian Festival for 300+ guests.
• 2008 (October: St. Charles, Illinois)- Opened for internationally renowned blues/ rock artist Zucchero in St. Charles, Illinois during his “All The Best World Tour” for 800+ guests at “The Arcada Theater.”
- Iliana owns and operates her own graphic design business, iSquared Designs, whose clientele ranges from the medical industry to the entertainment world.
- In 2012, Iliana took 2nd place on the CW television’s reality music competition series “The Next.”
- Iliana is not just a pretty face and voice; in May of 2011 she earned a Bachelor’s degree Summa Cum Laude.
- In 2010, Iliana was chosen to represent the Italian-American community in Chicago ’s Columbus Day Parade as the Columbus Day Queen.
- In 2009, Iliana was the David Award Recipient for professional promise in the field of entertainment.