The Sound of Music
Watch performances from the must-see live special now.
Stefano DiMera played by Joseph Mascolo
Like the phoenix that is his family crest, Stefano always rises from the ashes to regain his power. He is the seventh son of the seventh son, and according to a 300-year-old DiMera legend, such a son will never die.
In 2006, Stefano was re-introduced to the show when John and Marlena tracked him to an oxygen tent in an Italian hospital to learn that he was EJ's father. A few months later, EJ brought ailing Stefano to Salem for a clandestine kidney transplant, but it didn't do the trick. Stefano needed stem cells and ordered EJ to kidnap Sami so he could harvest the cells from her unborn baby. EJ refused. Stefano began to recuperate without EJ's help.
On his return to Salem, Stefano quickly got back to his old tricks. He and the loyal Dr. Rolf were hiding someone in the basement lab of the mansion. They referred to the person only as "the patient," and Stefano spoke of the day when the patient would become a super soldier. Stefano planned to use the patient to kill a nemesis who had recently begun threatening him.
Meanwhile, Stefano's relationship with his son grew strained. With Lucas in prison for the shooting of EJ, Stefano wanted him dead. EJ wanted nothing to do with Stefano or his desire to murder Lucas and raise EJ's son as a true DiMera, and Stefano disowned his son. EJ further went against his father when he broke into the DiMera mansion and discovered that his father and Dr. Rolf were keeping a man in the basement laboratory. EJ revealed the information to Marlena and Sami, and they soon discovered that the presumed-dead John had been Stefano's prisoner all this time.
Stefano went to prison for the kidnapping of John, but Marlena had other ideas about punishment. She slipped into Stefano's cell and injected him with a drug that made him fall into a catatonic state. In his absence, the root of the ongoing Brady-DiMera feud was revealed, and John learned that he was actually Stefano's half-brother.
Of course, Stefano again made a comeback. And when his long-time love Kate Roberts needed his help in erasing a crime she committed, he was there to provide his help. That is, if she agreed to marry him. She did, and despite the criminal circumstances, the two actually fell in love, though their relationship isn't without constant tension.
Joseph Mascolo plays Stefano DiMera
Just like Stefano DiMera, the character he plays on NBC's daytime drama Days of our Lives, Joseph Mascolo is somewhat of a Phoenix as well. He's had the good fortune to have been successful in two very competitive fields, first as a musician and then as an actor. Born and raised in West Hartford, Connecticut, Mascolo attended both the University of Miami and West Point Academy. From his early years, Mascolo seemed headed for a brilliant career as a classical musician. He played in various local bands and studied with some of the finest musicians in the country. He earned a scholarship to attend the University of Miami and became a candidate for a Fulbright Scholarship to study orchestral conducting, but there was a snag: his dream was to submerge himself in the study of opera in Italy and the available position was in Germany.
His first acting gig was in an off-Broadway production of The Threepenny Opera, followed by an appearance in A View from the Bridge, where he succeeded Robert Duvall as Eddie Carbone. Over the years, Mascolo appeared in numerous theatrical productions on and off-Broadway, as well as at Lincoln Center. One of Mascolo's greatest memories is his role as Enrico Caruso in the world premiere of the play Bravo Caruso!, which was an opportunity for him to combine his love of opera with his acting career.
His feature film debut came in Diary of a Mad Housewife, followed by roles in Sharky's Machine and Heat with Burt Reynolds, who describes his friend as "one of Hollywood's best kept secrets." Other films include Jaws II, Shaft's Big Score, and Yes Giorgio!, in which he realized a life-long dream as well as the challenge of singing a duet with his friend, renowned opera singer Luciano Pavarotti.
In television, he attracted much attention and a primetime Emmy nomination as Poppa in the NBC mini-series Poppa and Me. He made television history on the award-winning series All in the Family, as the first person to ever sit in Archie Bucker's beloved chair, which is now in the Smithsonian Museum. But it was his appearance in the made-for-television mini-series The Gangster Chronicles that attracted the attention of Pat Falcon-Smith, then head writer for Days of our Lives, that took his career in an unexpected new direction. She created the role of Stefano DiMera specifically with him in mind.
In 2001 Stefano DiMera said farewell to Salem and Mascolo left Days of our Lives. However, The Bold and the Beautiful quickly came calling. The character of Massimo Marone was created and the history of that show was shaken when viewers found out that Massimo, not Eric Forrester, was the real father of Ridge. He left The Bold and the Beautiful in August 2006.
Aside from his career, Mascolo has given freely of his time and talents to a wide variety of causes. He is very involved in the fund raising efforts of New Horizons, a non-profit organization in Los Angeles that offers guidance, counseling and careers for adults with developmental disabilities.
Mascolo currently resides in the Los Angeles area and also has recently built his "dream house" in Lake Arrowhead, CA. His favorite activities include gardening, playing tennis, reading and listening to music. His parents still live in West Harford, CT., he has a sister in Yucca Valley, CA and his grown son lives nearby in Los Angeles. Mascolo celebrates his birthday on March 13.