Grit and Grazia

All the world knows the image of the Venetian gondolier, but few people notice the unique style of rowing he uses to thread his gondola through narrow canals or propel it across the bacino and lagoon beyond: the voga alla veneta. Whether practiced for sport or leisure, it’s a vital activity that connects today’s Venice with its very origins.

Much of “saving Venice” centers around the just conservation of its past glory, and as such is often carried out by experts and scholars in laboratories, churches, libraries, and museums. The voga alla veneta, on the other hand, is a facet of Venice’s glorious past that is still living, still practiced by professionals and enthusiasts from all walks of life. While no longer the sole means of lagoon transport, it is still a source of pride and passion for anyone who practices it.

This feature-length documentary seeks to explore and illuminate the many facets of this unique rowing style and the part it has played over the centuries in Venice’s very existence. We’ve created two versions (the first English, the second in Italiano) of this short preview to illustrate a few fascinating aspects of the culture surrounding the voga alla veneta.


For more information on how your can contribute to this extraordinary endeavor to help us share this vital aspect of Venice with the world, visit


  • Cinematography: Lorenzo Pezzan
    Additional camera: Beppe Drago, Elena Seggi
  • Edited by: Nan McElroy, Chuck Trocino
  • Additional Editing: Francesco Marotta
  • Original Music: Chuck Trocino, and
  • Bowed Piano: from The Void and Sun Catcher, Vikings of the Sunrise, Stephen Scott, copyright 1995 by Adigital Music,  The Bowed Piano Ensemble.

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  1. Pingback: Venetian Gondoliers

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