At 12 noon, seventy people stood up and began to sing: it was the chorus of La Fenice, singing to thank the staff at the Pala Expo vaccination center
[Ed. note: I have to admit that imagining being at the Pala Expo today at noon when the singing started was stirring enough that I decided this was a good news story worth sharing. I mean, only in Venice…]
10 Dec. 2021
It was just like a flashmob, and nice because it was surprising and emotional. At noon, 70 people who appeared to be waiting their turn for Covid vaccination, suddenly and unexpectedly stood up and gave a surprise half-hour concert, to the amazement of the waiting people and emotion of the medical staff.
So, the Chorus of La Fenice, with the splendid surprise of its unexpected singing, offered the thanks of the City of Venice to the medical workers of ULSS 3 Serenissima. They left only one signature on the tablet (where users sign in for their turn), which revealed their identity while they were singing: “Grazie, sanitari. La Fenice”; “Thank you, medical professionals. La Fenice”.
Several members of the chorus then actually did get vaccinated, including the superintendent and artistic director of the grand theater, Fortunato Ortombina: “The vaccination center, with all of the medical personnel and the La Fenice chorus have made this flashmob the most moving concert of my whole life and career”.
“The national anthem erupted by surprise, with the magical voices of the Chorus – said the Director General of the healthcare company, Edgardo Contato – it gave us chills. There cannot be a nobler and more touching thanks. La Fenice, which arose from the ashes, is the most beautiful symbol of our hope: getting vaccinated we can win the challenge against the virus and finally re-emerge, together, to a full and normal life”.
The voices of the Chorus were mixed with the applause of hundreds of people waiting in the largest vaccination hub in Veneto. The “Va Pensiero”, which was overlapped by the continuous calls for the next in line for vaccination, brought the gratitude of La Fenice and the City of Venice to all the workers in the Veneto Healthcare Service, represented by Councilor for Healthcare Manuela Lanzarin, and to everyone nationally, workers and citizens together, living through the long challenge of the vaccination campaign.
“Today we are under siege again – said the Councilor – Only we know that, only the medical personnel who have worked continuously for 21 months now know this: the sacrifice, the daily struggle and the need to give up time with family. But the sense of responsibility and of belonging to a community has led to these results. I want to extend our gratitude to all 58 of our vaccination centers, to all of our 1600 medical professional who work at them, and to the thousands of volunteers who help us to keep them functioning every day”.
“I believe that this extraordinary gesture will remain pat of the history of Covid, and not only in Veneto and Italy, because La Fenice, who I thank, is a world-class institution, and the scene created today thanks to its chorus is an extraordinary message of gratitude, optimism and resilience”. With these words, President of the Veneto Region Luca Zaia expressed his “total admiration” for the La Fenice Chorus flashmob. “All of the medical personnel in Veneto are fighting an epochal battle, with immense sacrifices, and we never thank these women and men enough. La Fenice has succeeded with a gesture that I hope goes around the world, because there are people in every part of the world who are fighting hard against this virus”.
-Source: La Voce di Venezia