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  • Writer's pictureCineasta Digital

Season 2 of Maria's Portuguese Table Ready for PBS

The second season of the hit travel and culinary series "Maria's Portuguese Table" is set to premiere almost four years after the debut of the first season. The Modesto, California-based production company Cineasta Digital Productions and New England-based author and chef Maria Lawton teamed up to produce the show's first season in 2019, which reached a national PBS audience by 2020 despite a mainly self-funded, limited budget.

Covid delayed fund raising and production of additional episodes, but after receiving initial funding from RIPBS Foundation in late 2021 Lawton and her husband, co-executive producer Bob Lawton, began pre-production for the second season. Season two filming took place

during the summer and fall of 2022 in various locations. Each episode will continue to highlight Portuguese cuisine while exploring the Portuguese immigrant experience throughout North America and returning to Lawton's roots on the Azores Islands.

In addition to support from RIPBS Foundation, other major supporters include Bay Coast Bank, UMass Dartmouth Center for Portuguese Studies & Culture, Dunkin’, Azores Airlines, Bensaude Hotels Collection, and Azores Tourism. There were individual supporters as

well, many donating through a GoFundMe campaign. “We needed literally every penny we were given” said Maria, “A friend saw that I was struggling and surprised me with the GoFundMe! Honestly, it was humbling to receive so much support from people I’ve never met. This show wouldn’t have happened without any of our contributors

regardless of the size of their donation.”

Director and Producer, Dean Camara, who is a 2-time Emmy award winning cinematographer, assembled a crew of other Emmy award

winning talent including Charlie Askew as Director of Photography, Jeff Civitkovic as Producer and Senior Editor, Patrick Payne as Post-Production Supervisor, Scott Perry as Post-Production Sound Engineer, and

Mark Gardner as Location Sound Engineer.

"We were so fortunate to be able to put together this special crew for Season 2. We were able to accomplish a lot more of the cinematic goals I had originally for Season 1, but was able to finally execute on this one." reflects Camara, "We really wanted to make sure we

captured the locations, the moments and the food in a unique way and I think we accomplished that."

The eight part series will feature four episodes set in the New England area, from Cape Cod to Boston, and four episodes set in the central islands of the Azorean archipelago, off the beaten path and into local kitchens. "Maria's Portuguese Table" interweaves heritage, culture, and history into each episode, taking viewers on a unique journey.

"Being able to showcase the central islands has been a dream of mine since we started this project," Lawton said. "These are islands that not too many people are familiar with, and I am beyond excited to be a part of introducing them to everyone. This series is so important to both Dean and I. Dean, being the product of Azorean parents, and I, being born in the Azores, have roots that are deeply Portuguese.”

The second season of "Maria's Portuguese Table" will premiere regionally on April 2 at 7:00 pm on Rhode Island PBS, airing for eight consecutive Sundays before going nationwide in June. Lawton expressed her gratitude for the support they've received and is looking

forward to future seasons on mainland Portugal and Madeira Island. With the show's first season having received several accolades and awards, including an Emmy and Taste Awards nomination for the best Cooking & Travel Series, the Taste Spotlight Award, and Telly Award in both Silver and Bronze for Best TV Series on PBS in Food & Culture.

The second season is highly anticipated by fans of the series.

About Maria Lawton

Maria (Medeiros Cabral DaPonte) Lawton was born on the Azorean island of Sao Miguel, a Portuguese island in the North Atlantic. She turned her preservation of family recipes into a best-selling cookbook, Azorean Cooking: From My Family Table to Yours. Her passion is for all things Portuguese, particularly the culture and the cuisine. The production of the television show “Maria’s Portuguese Table” has been a labor of love and is the fruition of a seemingly impossible dream. For more information, visit or email Maria at

About Cineasta Digital Productions

Cineasta Digital Productions was started by Dean Camara in 2014, after spending 15 years as a founding partner & CPO with another California based media company. Dean has a passion for storytelling with the camera and has become proficient in all facets of filmmaking production. He is a proud first generation, Portuguese-American with parents that immigrated from the small Azorean island of Santa Maria. He is married to his wife Rocio, and has two 5 yr old children, twins, Olivia and Andre. In addition to his successful production company, he has also spent 20 seasons as a freelance cinematographer for NFL

Films, shooting everything from regular season football games, playoffs, and super bowls. His two Emmy's were received for his camera work on the long running HBO series, "Hard Knocks." For more information regarding Cineasta Digital Productions, visit

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Mar 12, 2023

Such an amazing accomplishment & dream come true ! Isabel Medeiros

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