|Would the cancellation of the official, pyrotechnical Festa del Redentore return the event to Venetians?|
Considering that the origins of the Redentore celebration lie in the 16th century, and that the feast has long been the most important one in the city calendar--really one of the defining civic events of the year--not everyone was as upset by this possibility as one might have expected. One commenter on Facebook wrote that "after so many years of commercialization, the festa will return to being just ours, with our boats, watermelon, sarde in saor, pasta e fasioli, music and the hymn to San Marco. No more yachts and tourist boats."
Could this be true? A grand firework extravaganza at midnight has come to be considered the culmination of La Festa del Redentore--it's really the event's big selling point to visitors--but if there were no fireworks this July would that mean that there would also be none of those loud obnoxious party boats cruising the lagoon blaring "YMCA"?
I have no doubt that Venetians would celebrate the feast whether there were fireworks or not: that communal dinner tables would be set up on fondamente and in campi all over town, that residents would still take to the lagoon in their own boats festooned with lights, but would all those other elements--those of mass tourism, which aim it seems to introduce a large dose of Spring Break in Fort Lauderdale, Florida into the lagoon--really disappear?
Or will the thumping boats and the out-of-town drunks still come, fireworks or not? And is the idea that Redentore might once more be returned to the Venetians themselves just a fond desperate illusion, a fantasy of a time that can never be recaptured--imagined by people who have little left to them but such memories?
|A communal dinner table in Castello during Redentore 2012|
Fabulous pictures, Sig. Nonloso! Thanks for sharing them. By the way, I am having a chuckle at myself...I've only just 'got' 'Non lo so' from your name. Doh. I've been following you for at least a couple of years - so I've been a bit slow :)ReplyDelete
Thanks, Cap Venice, I'm happy to hear you like them--and when it comes to my blogger name you need never worry about yourself being "a bit slow," as it was purely my own inability to think of anything clever or swift that led me to settle upon it.Delete
Taking a ride down the Grand Canal at night beats any fire works, but I must admit your photo is very impressive.ReplyDelete
What would be your response if some tourists happened upon the communal dinner and started snapping away? Should Venetians reclaim the night?
The fireworks are quite nice, Anna, but I'm with you when it comes to thinking a ride down the Grand Canal at night is just as magical.Delete
I suspect that many Venetians are so used to people everywhere with cameras taking pictures of everything that they're probably more surprised when cameras are absent than when they appear at some event. But like anywhere else, I'm sure an invasive person with a camera--whether they're local or from far away--is never especially welcome anyplace in the world.
It would be nice if Venetians could feel the event returned to them somewhat--we shall see what happens. I'm not so sure that threatening Redentore is little more than some kind of political maneuver; at least that's the kind of thing it would likely be in the US.
Anna, the fireworks in the Bacino are unlike any boat ride on the Grand Canal, in fact I haven't seen any fireworks for the 4th of July that come even close to the fireworks in Venice. Seen them from a boat are incredibly powerful. Venetians look forward this incredible display the whole year and they prepare menus and plan the whole evening. As as teenager I used to spend the night at the beach with my friends. It is a very special event.Delete
But, Laura, now, in the present, if you had to choose between fireworks and a city overrun with hooligans and destructive drunks or no fireworks and a city left more to local celebrations, which would you prefer?Delete
Of course it's not so clear cut or simple a chose as that.
In NYC they used to shoot the firework from two boats on either side of Manhattan at the same time; I'm not sure if in recent yrs it's been reduced to just one boat. But this gave Venice's fireworks a run for their money. I've seen fireworks in SF--not the same.
This news makes my stomach sick.ReplyDelete
When will this greed ever end? Depressing…..
I have to try to find out where things now stand, Laura. I haven't seen anything on the subject since and the day is rapidly approaching. There's nothing at all about Redentore on the comune website right now.Delete
As for greed... That seems to be ever ongoing.