Laura Benanti

by stlucas on May 9, 2017

Birth Name: Laura Ilene Vidnovic

Place of Birth: New York City, New York, U.S.

Date of Birth: July 15, 1979

Ethnicity: Serbian, German, English, Irish

Laura Benanti is an American actress and singer.

Laura is the daughter of Linda (Wonneberger) and Martin Vidnovic. Laura was raised by her mother and stepfather, Salvatore Benanti, in Kinnelon, New Jersey.

Laura’s father has Serbian ancestry. Laura’s mother is of half German descent, and also has English and Irish ancestry. Laura is also said to have Native American ancestry. It is not clear if this Native American ancestry has been verified/documented.

Laura is married to Patrick Brown, with whom she has a daughter.

Laura’s paternal grandparents were Burke Vidnovic (the son of Božo Vidnjević/Vidnovic and Smilyna/Cecilia Devic) and Marge/Mary M. Bozo and Smilyna were from Ponikve, Yugoslavia.

Laura’s maternal grandfather was William Karl Wonneberger (the son of Oswald Wonneberger and Louise). Oswald was born in Germany. Louise was born in New York, to parents from Germany.

Laura’s maternal grandmother was Elsie Ilene Jones (the daughter of Ertie Lee “Casey” Jones and Mary Elizabeth Byrne). Ertie was the son of William Fleming “Wild Bill” Jones and Mary Jane Norris.

Sources: Obituary of Laura’s uncle (father’s brother), Nicholas Charles Vidnovic –

Obituary os Laura’s great-uncle (paternal grandfather’s brother), Nick Vidnovic –

Obituary of Laura’s uncle (mother’s brother), Robert Karl Wonneberger –

Laura’s maternal grandfather, William Karl Wonneberger, on the 1930 U.S. Census –

Genealogy of Laura’s mother, Linda Wonneberger (focusing on her own mother’s side) –

Photo by kathclick/

{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

bablah May 10, 2017 at 6:44 am

>Laura’s paternal grandparents were Burke Vidnovic (the son of Bozo Vidnovic and Smilyna/Cecilia) and Marge/Mary M. Bozo and Smilyna were from Ponikve, Yugoslavia (now Serbia).

Božo Vidnjević from Ellis island records was from ”Hungary”, meaning Croatia. There’s a last name Vidnjević in Ogulin, and there’s a place called Ponikve near Ogulin with mostly Serbian people living in it (at least before the recent war).
His waife’ slast name was Devic.

follers May 10, 2017 at 8:23 am

So is there an ethnicity change?

bablah May 10, 2017 at 9:49 am
andrew May 10, 2017 at 12:01 pm

I would change to:

* Serbian (father)
* German (maternal grandfather)
* English, Irish (maternal grandmother)

follers May 10, 2017 at 1:56 pm

I don’t know if her father is of fully Serbian descent. He could have German, English, and/or Irish ancestry, too.

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