Venetian Gondolas

I couldn’t possibly have posted about Venice and not mentioned the gondolas. I cannot think of Venetian gondolas without thinking of this Barcarolle by Mendelssohn:

The work for me always evokes an image of a lonely gondolier rowing his gondola on a still, clear moonlit night (the linear notes accompanying the CD might have had a role in planting that in my head).

Bollywood’s representation is often a lot more literal:

We didn’t see (hear?) any Gondoliers sing. The Gondoliers row and the singing and music is often left to a dedicated singer, guitarist pair per two or three gondolas that tourist companies rent to groups. The music they make is beautiful and comes together nicely with the setting:

Music or not, the gondolas, gondoliers and their customers make for a wonderful subject:

January 29, 2013