The beautifully filmed docudrama, The Students of Umberto Primo, brings to life the stories of nine young Jewish students studying at the Italian school, Umberto Primo, in Thessaloniki, Greece, during the time of Nazi occupation. The project is the result of a discovery by Antonio Crescenzi of students’ essays, graduation diplomas, and other documents of historical importance, that had been long forgotten in the basement of the Italian Institute of Thessaloniki (formerly the location of Italian School of Umberto Primo). Sadly, these students never received their graduation diplomas, or their papers, because of Nazi persecution. Thanks to Crescenzi's discovery and subsequent work, 157 diplomas were presented to survivors and/or their families in January 2017.


Crescenzi and director, Alessandra Maoiletti, collaborated to lovingly and respectfully research and recreate the lives of these young boys and girls, who were just “coming of age,” depicting their dreams and aspirations for the future and the exuberance of their youth – a youth cut short for the sole reason that they were Jewish. Some survived the Holocaust. Sadly, some did not.

Initially, The Students of Umberto Primo debuted as a theatre production, also directed by Maioletti, which had a highly acclaimed and successful run throughout Greece. The film seeks to not only bring more life to the story, but to also reach a broader audience with a work of important cultural and historical significance.


It is important now, perhaps more than ever, to understand the evil that lurks in this world, and to remind people of what can happen when totalitarianism, isolationism, nationalism and fanatic-ideological beliefs overcome the core values and compassion of the “regular citizen.”


Script: Antonio Crescenzi - Alessandra Maioletti

Film Director: Alessandra Maioletti

Assistant Director: Evghenia Marangou

Producer: Oneiro Company

Executive Producer: Tasos Katsaris / Blacklight Productions


Cosmote TV
Diane Carvisiglia Boulanger

Cast (in alphabetical order):

Dimitra Derzekou, Kostantinos Ghelameris, Kostas Kaloudiotis, Lefteris Kolitsos, Christina Mathioulaki, Giorgis Papadopoulos, Iakovina Sergi, Sofia Skaramanga, Giannis Triantakis

Second Roles:

Kostantina Arghiropoulou Petrova, Eftichia Charalambaki, Aghelina Klavdianou, Panaghiotis Kotsalis, Michalis Psalidas


Director of Photography: Dimitris Katsaitis
Art Directors: Lucas Ekonomopoulos
, Giorgos Georgiou
Music: Christos David Daoulas

Film Editor: Vangelis Katsigiannis
Sound Designer: Anastasios Katsaris

Sound Engineers: Vangelis Pyrpylis, Stelios Michailidis
Costumes: Vasilia Rozana

Makeup: Maria Ioanidou

Hair Stylists: Keti Aravanitou, Maria Theodorogianni
Production Manager: Kostas Prekezes


Camera Assistants: Iakovos Avdoulos, Stelios Orfanidis
Production Assistants: Katerina Tamvaki, Savas Mola
Driver: Aristotelis Koutas

Electrician: Vangelis Kalavrytinos
Key Grip: Vassilis Koukouravas

Historians: Andreas Bouroutis, Nikos Marantzidis

Accountants: Ermis Karageorgos, Panagiotis Voutsis

Lawyer: Georgandreas Zannos

With the support of:

The German Embassy in Athens
The Embassy of Italy in Athens
The Embassy of Israel in Athens

The Italian Cultural Institute of Athens
The Jewish Museum of Thessaloniki

The Jewish Museum of Greece in Athens

The Central Board of Jewish Communities in Greece


The Students of Umberto Primo was co-financed by the German Federal Foreign Office
through funds of the German-Greek Future Fund

And with the support of: