Every year, usually between July and August, Livorno hosts one of Tuscany’s greatest summer happenings: Effetto Venezia. The event takes place in one of the most ancient and characteristic neighbourhoods of the city, in Venezia Nuova, New Venice, a dense network of canals that once served to link Livorno’s warehouses to the port. Built in 1629, by the will of Ferdinando II de’ Medici, the new district was recuperated from the sea and linked to the town with bridges in a complicated work of intersection, for this skilled Venetian workers were recruited and thus the name. Today, Venezia Nuova, retains much of its original planning and architectural features and is the real historical centre of this city, which since the Middle Ages was an international, strategic port and to later become an enlightened European city.
Since 1986, in summer the bridges and narrow lanes of the New Venice district are enlivened by stalls full of international food or handicrafts, shows, buskers and cultural events. Every year Effetto Venezia adopts a different theme which is recalled by the shows during the event. These have ranged from international identities – “Scents of Spain” (2010), “la Douce France” (2011), “Mythical Greece” (2012), “la Bella Italia” (2013) – to more socially committed themes such as “Livorno, land of rights” (2015) and “Urban dignity” (2016).
With 15 stages and over 80 events, every year there are concerts, cooking shows, photo exhibitions, a tour of the canals by boat, conferences, book presentations, dancing exhibitions, and much more.
As always there will also be street artists, marching bands, itinerant concerts, classical concerts, exhibitions, and much more, not to forget the many different food stalls with dishes from all over the world, in memory of the internationality that has always characterized this beautiful port town on the Etruscan Coast.