‘My Mother Inspired Me’: Sopranos Alum Drea de Matteo Shares Heartfelt Tribute For Mom After Her Sudden Death

Sopranos Alum Drea de Matteo finally opened up about her mother, Donna de Matteo’s sudden death on May 31, 2024. Donna de Matteo bid farewell to this world after experiencing a cardiac episode. Now talking about her mother’s demise, Drea de Matteo reflects on her impeccable work as she hints at her upcoming projects which in a way will pay tribute to her mom. 

Everything to know about Drea de Matteo’s mother, Donna de Matteo

Donna was an acclaimed writer of her own time, as wrote over 30 plays including Broadway productions. Her plays usually tackled a diverse range of social themes: homophobia, and addiction, and some plays even drew inspiration from her personal experiences. Donna de Matteo additionally became a founding member of the National Organization of Italian-American Women and further served as executive director of the HB Playwright Foundation. 

Talking about her mother’s unexpected death, Drea revealed that she was struck with this saddening news on her way to New York. “We are deeply saddened by the unexpected loss of my mother, Donna de Matteo. I was on my way to New York to spend the summer with her when I received the news of her passing,” Drea shared in her statement to PEOPLE.

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Drea de Matteo opens up about her mother, Donna de Matteo’s death 

Drea de Matteo in her statement referred to her mother as an “amazing woman” and praised her for her commendable work despite experiencing multiple hardships in her life. As per Drea, her mom didn’t limit herself to her tragic circumstances and went out to inspire others with her thoughtful writing. 

She stated, “My mother was an amazing woman. She was sensitive, emotional, and brilliant. She experienced generational trauma but refused to let it define her. She took her pain and made beautiful art with it, writing plays that tore your heart out teaching her craft to others.” She further stated that her mother has experienced all the ups and downs of being an Italian American, and expressed her respect for her mother’s efforts to help women like her. 

“All of the best and worst of the Italian American experience was present in her upbringing, and she felt the whole spectrum of experiences of Italian American women. She devoted her life to helping women like her, and gave out scholarships so they could discover new worlds like she did,” Drea remarked. 

Drea de Matteo (PC: Instagram/dreadematteo)

Drea de Matteo additionally revealed that her mother inspires her to pursue her career in the entertainment industry. “My mother inspired me to pursue a career in the entertainment industry. I would never have made it without her support,” she added. The Emmy Award winner made it clear that even though her past efforts tried to honor her mother, it still requires much effort. She teased fans about her upcoming project that will pay tribute to her mother.

“While I have tried to honor her in some way in all the work I’ve done, there is still more to come,” she stated. “My next project will look a little different, but I hope it will do even more than honor her — it will focus on her legacy and will keep her story alive to inspire future generations.”

As Donna de Matteo rests in peace, her revolutionary writing will surely be missed. Drea, on the other hand, suffers from a tragic personal loss, yet her dedication to honoring and building upon her mother’s efforts is surely worth the praise.

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