2009 Venice Carnival

From 13 February 2009 to 24 February 2009

Every year the Venice Carnival offers a rich programme of events, attracting thousands of visitors from all over the world.

2009 is no exception, with almost two weeks of celebrations involving all the city with its many cultural centres (the la Fenice theatre, the Bienalle and the Teatro Stabile) in a unique spectacle which always maintains its traditions and sumptuous history.

This year's event is entitles “Sensation”, and ascribes one of the senses to each of the six areas of the city: Sight to San Polo, Hearing to Dorsoduro, Smell to Santacroce, Taste to Canareggio, while San Marco, the centre of the celebrations and heart of the city itself,  hosts Intellect.

Marco Balich, artistic director, refers to it as an “unplugged” carnival, i.e. an “acoustic” event, relaxed and away from the clamour and pressures of everyday life.

Saint Mark's Square will be transformed into a giant open-air salon”, he says, “with theatrical pieces, gardens and hedges. There will be a wider distribution of events throughout the city's districts and there will be a greater enhancement of decoration.”

A period-costume parade will take place along the Grand Canal on the 14th February, Saint Valentine's Day, while Sunday 15th sees the celebrated “Flight of the Angel” with the added bonus of important guests. Also on the Sunday there will be the Feste delle Marie, with the selection of the most beautiful girl at the carnival.

The last Sunday of the carnival, 22nd, instead offers the “Flight of the Ass”, a parody of the Angel's flight, the traditional swimming in the bracing waters of the Lido, a children's competition, and the presentation of the prize for the best mask of the carnival. “Fat Tuesday” (martedì grasso, mardi gras) is the date for the Carnival of Burano, the beginning of the Carnival of the Dark, a drag-queen competition and much more.

By Insidecom Editorial Staff