The Festa del Redentore

The Festa del Redentore is a traditional festival, celebrating Venice’s deliverance from a 16th C plague and the construction of Palladio’s Church.

Taking place during the weekend of the third Sunday of July, the Festa del Redentore, or  the “Festival of the Redeemer”; combines religious events, the construction of a pontoon bridge, a huge firework display, a regatta and mass celebratory parties with families and friends.

The Church can be reached by pilgrims during the festival, by means of an impressive 330-metre-long pontoon bridge; connecting the Zattere on the southern side of the district of Dorsoduro, with Guidecca island.

This post has been updated to include details of the 2024 event; staged over the 19-21th July. 

  • History
  • program
  • Links (internal-external)

 

The Festa del Redentore – History

The “Festa del Redentore” began as a feast, held on the day of the Feast of the Most Holy Redeemer; to give thanks for the end of the terrible plague of between 1575 and 1577, which killed around 50,000 people; including it was thought, the great painter Tiziano Vecellio; we know as Titian.

The Doge Alvise I Mocenigo, made a promise to God to build a magnificent church, if the plague could be ended. He kept his vow and Andrea Palladio was commissioned, to build a majestic church on the Island of Giudecca.

The new church was built on the place of a former church, dedicated to “Santa Maria degli Angeli”; which was given to the Capuchins. The Capuchin monks, owe their name to the pointed cowl (capuche in Italian) they wore.

After the foundation stone was laid, a small wooden church was temporarily built, along with a temporary bridge of barges from the Zattere; so that the Doge Sebastian Venier could walk in procession as far as the tabernacle

 

 

 

 

 

 

                                                   

                                                                      Above: Two views and Floor Plan of “Il Redentore”

 

Unfortunately, Palladio died in 1580 and the works continued under the supervision of Antonio da Ponte, the architect of the Rialto bridge. In 1592, the church was completed and consecrated by Lorenzo Priuli, Patriarch of Venice; under Doge Pasquale Cicogna.

The Doges, thereafter, made an annual pilgrimage to the church.

The Redentore church is one of Palladio’s finest churches. The facade can be best admired from the Zatteri embankment, opposite.

 

Externally its wide staircase and huge doorway are especially designed for processions. The interior (above) is very sober, in line with the vows of poverty of the Capuchin monks.

Note: Interestingly the “Basilica of Santa Maria della Salute” was built for a similar reason. This church remembers the third and last major Venetian plague of 1630, in Venice.

 

 

Firework display during the Festa del Redentore, seen over the Salute Basilica

 

The Program

On the first day of Festa del Redentore 2024, a great party will be held, completed in the evening by a spectacular fireworks display.

The second day of the feast, Sunday, is reserved for religious service and for the Regatta of the Redeemer (Regata del Redentore), a race of typical Venetian boats.

July 20, Saturday:

7.00 pm, the opening of the Thanksgiving Bridge;
11.30 pm, fireworks display in the Saint Mark’s Basin.

July 21, Sunday:

Between 4.00 pm and 6.00 pm, the Regatta of the Redeemer, on the Giudecca Canal;
7.00 pm – the Votive Mass will be held in the Church of Il Redentore, on the Giudecca island.

Get the full details at the external links below.


 

LINKS (internal external)

The Feast of the Redeemer 2024 | Events – Venezia Unica

Festa del Redentore 2024 – Venice, Veneto | ITALYscapes

“Venice – Calendar of Events 2024”

Other posts in the category of “Festivals-Regattas-Events”


 

The Festa del Redentore

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