Chiesa di San Vidal - I concerti degli Interpreti Veneziani

Monday, July 10th, 2023

Founded probably around 1084, under the Doge Vitale Falier, and dedicated in fact to its patron saint, the church was rebuilt a first time in the 12th century when the present brick bell tower with pyramidal spire was rebuilt, and later, in the 15th century, in Gothic forms. More important were the interventions at the end of the 17th century: the heirs of Francesco Morosini, known as the Peloponnesian, decided to make it the funeral monument to the valiant Doge-leader who had conquered the Morea but, due to disagreements that arose within the family, the mausoleum project was not translated into reality. However, architect Antonio Gaspari, a pupil of Baldassarre Longhena, who had prepared the plans for the Morosini to remake the building, began the reconstruction of the church, adapting it to a cultic function only. Between 1696 and 1700 the internal reconstruction was completed. The new building characterized, now, by a single nave and side altars lacked, however, the façade, which was executed later, thanks to funding from the Contarini family, by architect Andrea Tirali, who drew on Palladian models present in the city: the façade presents, in fact, a single order of Corinthian columns resting on high plinths that support a triangular tympanum crowned with statues. Once inside the building one is immediately struck by the main altarpiece painted by Vittore Carpaccio: the painting depicts Saint Vitale on horseback and four saints adoring the Virgin with the Putto (1514). Other paintings in the church are the work of eighteenth-century artists working in different parts of the lagoon, such as Piazzetta, Pellegrini and Giulia Lama, a painter with few known works. On the counterfaçade is the Bazzani organ built in 1833. Also valuable is the sacristy where, in a cozy setting, a series of paintings by 18th-century authors find their place. Tradition has it that the church of San Vidal was the burial place of the famous Venetian musician Baldassare Galuppi (died January 17, 1785), of whom, however, there is no memorial plaque.

MUSICAL INFORMATION (Aldo Bova "Venice the places of music") On the occasion of the feast of the saint, Bonaventura Furlanetto composed and conducted vespers for three voices in which the famous double bass player Domenico Dragonetti played and made resounding solos (in 1799 he had played in a duo with Ludwig van Beethoven). Bazzani organ (1833) with one keyboard and 17 registers.

In the parish lived Dario Castello (around 1630) head of the company of Musichi d'Instrumenti da fiato in Venetia and Baldassare Galuppi, who died on January 17, 1785 and was buried in the church (no tombstone found).

You might also be interested in: