Serenate, barcarole, marinaresche: la Venezia musicale nell’immaginario turistico dell’Ottocento
During the nineteenth century, social changes brought about a new idea of tourism: travelling was no longer a costly educational and cultural experience reserved for a small and privileged elite but, increasingly, an enjoyable and relatively inexpensive pastime for the wealthy classes. Beginning in the 1830s, awareness of the role of tourism as an economic resource was growing in Venice. This led to the construction of new hotels and the earliest bathing facilities, accessible not only to the richest visitors but also to bourgeois tourists in search of culture and recreation. Important resources were also identified in local cultural traditions. Of particular interest, in musical terms, was the serenata sull’acqua or “floating serenade”, itself closely associated with the traditional feasts and regattas as a symbol of the ancient link between Venice and water. In the present study, the principal musical characteristics of the different types of serenade are identified. Also discussed are the musical repertoires, which include not only operatic excerpts (overtures, arias and choruses) but also some “barcarole”, “marinaresche” and “serenate” of evidently local flavour.