Opera

”An opera begins long before the curtain goes up and ends long after it has come down. It starts in my imagination, it becomes my life, and it stays part of my life long after I’ve left the opera house.” – Maria Callas

The beautiful things with opera houses aren’t just the wonderful singing and the incredible performance but also the environment, amazing scenery and not to be forgotten: the audience. They are the beating heart of the opera house. Visit some of the world’s most beautiful buildings when traveling and get an amazing opera experience.

Beautiful opera houses in Italy

The opera houses in Italy are some of the oldest in the world. People from all over the globe visit Italy to get an opera experience you can’t get anywhere else

Enjoy wonderful operas in Florence

Since florence is hosting a lot of operas, this is one of the must-visits when spending time in this wonderful city. Enrich your visit in Florence by visiting one of the oldest opera houses in Europe.  While you are there, check out their amazing photo gallery as well! Read more about Florence here!

The most famous opera house in the world

Milan’s Teatro alla Scala is perhaps the most famous opera house in the world, the one most associated with the word “opera” since it is 230 years old. It is not surprising that flocks of people fly from all corners of the world to see this incredible historical site each year. The opera house in Milan is a must when spending time in the city! Read more on the opera house in Milan here!

Teatro di San Carlo in Naples

Teatro di san Carlo is an amazing opera house in Italy and is the oldest working theatre in the world from 1737. The opera house is famous for its gold and red colors and some of Rossini’s most prestigious popular operas were premiered here. Read more on Naples here!

Modern Opera Houses

While many of the great opera houses in the world are built in the 19th century in Neo-classical or Neo-renaissance style, there has been an influx of beautiful opera houses all over the world since the beginning of the 21th century. It is almost as the architects and the cities are competing against each other, and we are the ones getting rewarded!

Construction Boom in China

The opera house in Guangzhou is not only one of the latest being built, it is also the biggest and one of the prettiest. Iraqi architect Zaha Hadid has created a modern opera house with erratically shaped walls creating a shape that almost resembles a science fiction-like spaceship. Another masterpiece in China is located in the capital Beijing. The National Centre of Performance Arts was inaugurated in 2007 and features an amazing design where you, under the right conditions, can see a reflection off of the artificial lake infront of the building which creates the symbol of yin and yang.

Quick facts

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SYDNEY

Sydney Opera House

This iconic opera house, built in 1973 by the late Danish architect Jørn Utzon is located on the tip of the Royal Botanic Garden peninsula. Its status among the most beautiful and impressive opera houses in the world was cemented in 2007 when it was considered for when the New7Wonders Foundation announced candidates for a new list of world wonders. While it didn't make the final cut, it did become a UNESCO World Heritage Site the same year which is a testament to the quality of the design and engineering that makes The Sydney Opera House arguably the most famous opera house in the world. The opera house features several auditoriums, where the Concert Hall is the biggest, seating not only 2679 people but also the largest organ in the world with over 10,000 pipes. While Opera Australia, the primary opera house company in Australia, resides here, so does also many other performing arts companies. No matter what kind of entertainment you are looking for, you will probably find it here!

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BUDAPEST

Budapest Opera House

Hungarian State Opera House

The Hungarian State Opera House, situated in central Budapest, is a neo-Renaissance opera house designed by Miklós Ybl and a major site of Hungarian architecture from the 19th century. The venue offers youth programs and guided tours in addition to its repertoire of opera performances, so check what’s going on during your visit to choose the activity that suits you best!

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CALGARY

Calgary Opera House

Southern and Northern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium

The Southern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium is the venue where the productions of the Calgary Opera Company take place. The Calgary Opera has committed to the development of new opera works and of Canadian talent especially during the past decade, which in addition to their education programs have made the company connect very well with the community. Built together with the Northern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium in 1955 for the 50th anniversary of Alberta, the Southern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium is home to, apart from the Calgary Opera, the Alberta Ballet and many Broadway shows among lots of other productions. You should definitely check the programmes of both venues during your visit and maybe attend a musical or a stand-up comedy show!

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GENEVA

Genève Opera House

Grand Théâtre de Genève

The Grand Théâtre de Genève is both an institution and a venue. As an institution, it is the largest theatre in terms of production and hosting in French-speaking Switzerland. As a venue, it houses the largest stage in the country and it is a beautiful, majestic building opened in 1876 and reopened in 1962 after a fire. The venue offers performances ranging from opera, dance, concerts and theatre, and also a program dedicated to young audiences. Take a look at the season’s program during your visit!

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STOCKHOLM

Opera Stockholm

Royal Swedish Opera

Situated in the borough of Norrmalm in the centre of Stockholm, Kungliga Operan (the Royal Opera) has been Sweden’s national opera and ballet stage since the 18th of January of 1773, when Thetis and Phelée was performed there as the first native speaking opera in the country. The Royal Swedish Opera is a beautiful building offering two daily tours during the weekdays and with a couple of restaurants finely decorated and with amazing views. If you are a music enthusiast, definitely check the performances played during your visit!

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HAMBURG

Hamburg Opera House

Hamburgische Staatsoper

Founded in 1678, the Hamburgische Staatsoper is one of the oldest active opera houses in the world. It was the first opera house in Germany, made possible by the art loving people of Hamburg. The building we see today is not the same as in 1678 as it has been rebuilt twice, once in 1827 and once in 1955, and was renovated between 2002 and 2005. The love for opera remains though, and the tradition of breaking new ground will continue as the city of Hamburg is planning a grand opera house that is expected to be complete in 2017.

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LYON

Lyon Opera House

Opéra Nouvel

The Opera House in Lyon has a history dating back to 1756 when it was first created as an extension of an existing building in Lyon. The biggest problem was the size of the opera house, which led to a new building being created about 70 years later. The new building served the French opera enthusiasts well for more than a century, but in the 1980's, it was decided that a modernization of the opera house was in order. Built on top of the old building, the French architects added a horseshoe-like glass suited roof and several improvements both for the performing artists but also for the audience. The new Opéra Nouvel is the result of when the old and the new can merge into something truly great.

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LONDON

London Opera House

Royal Opera House, London

Situated in the busy district of Covent Garden, the Royal Opera House is the major venue for performing arts in London since its opening in 1732. The Royal Opera House includes the Royal Opera, the Royal Ballet and the Orchestra. Apart from the vast range of performances you can see, the Royal Opera House offers a guided tour of the facility during which you may happen to coincide with a rehearsal of the royal ballet!

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MIAMI

Miami Opera House

The Arsht Center

The Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts, commonly called The Arsht Center, is found in Miami and it is the largest performing arts centre in Florida, second largest in the United States. The architect, César Pelli, is considered by the American Institute of Architects as one of the ten most influential living American architects! If you take a look at their website, you’ll find the season’s program in addition to a calendar filled with all kinds of activities such as farmers markets, free tours and festivals and information on their three restaurants.

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PRAGUE

Prague Opera House

Státní opera

Located between parks Celakovskeho and Riegrovy, the Státni Opera (The State Opera) has been the main venue for opera in Prague since its founding in 1888. During the Second World War, the Státni Opera was one of few bastions of democracy that stood tall against the Nazi terror that dominated most of Europe. Even though the Státni Opera attach great importance to their historical roots, the opera house is today one of the more progressive in terms of the productions that they perform.

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TOKYO

Tokyo Opera House

The New National Theatre

Located in the Shibuya district in Tokyo, founded in 1997, this performance arts center has been the main venue in Tokyo for the finer arts since it was built. The building contains three auditoriums where the biggest is a purpose built opera house seating 1814 people. The venue is home to the New National Theatre Opera and the New National Theatre Ballet, both known for their conservative approach mostly performing classical pieces drawing inspiration from 20th century European masterpieces. If you are visiting the busy Shibuya district, this world class opera house might just be the perfect place to retreat to when you are in need of a break from the commerce driven shopping district.

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BUENOS AIRES

Buenos Aires Opera

Teatro Colón

Buenos Aires’ Teatro Colón turned 100 years in 2008 since its first performance of Verdi’s opera Aida. Situated in the heart of the Argentinian capital city, this opera house is designed according to the 20th century’s typical eclectic style including French decoration by the Belgian architect Jules Dormal This majestic venue offers guided tours explaining the history and architecture of the site, and, of course, it offers world-class performances that should not be missed if you are interested and have the chance!

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PARIS

Paris Opera House - Palais Garnier

The Palais Garnier is one of the most influential opera houses, having inspired many opera houses all over the world. In Europe, opera houses in Kiev and Warsaw are most famously inspired by the Palais Garnier. Also, in what used to be French colonies, the influences can be seen, for example in Vietnam the Hanoi Opera House is often described as a small-scale replica of the Palais Garnier. The name of the building is pretty telling, translating to Palace, the Palais Garnier is simply exceptional in how lavish and luxurious it is. Apart from the amazing exterior and interior design, the operas that are performed here are made with the highest quality ensuring a complete opera experience for both natives and visitors.

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NEW YORK CITY

New York City Opera House

Metropolitan Opera House: the Met

The Metropolitan Opera House, New York City’s main opera house situated at Lincoln Square, is the world’s largest purpose-built opera house. Opened in 1966, the Met is the home of the Metropolitan Opera, the largest classical music company in North America. The venue was designed by Wallace K. Harrison and it is noted for its excellent acoustics and large size. The wide range of prices for the shows at the Met make it a very accessible activity if you are interested, and guided tours are also offered!

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LOS ANGELES

Los Angeles Opera House

The Dorothy Chandler Pavilion

The Dorothy Chandler Pavilion is a part of The Los Angeles Music Center, which is one of the biggest centers for performance arts in the USA. This part of the center, which is a dedicated Opera House, was constructed in March 1962 and is named after Dorothy Chandler who was the leading force behind the rebirth of performance arts in Los Angeles during this time. The Los Angeles Opera, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Los Angeles Master Chorale and Center Theatre Group all call this building home, but they also have to share the place with international artists who travel to this cultural Mecca. Apart from The Dorothy Chandler Pavilion other buildings share the space in this huge cultural melting pot. The Ahmanson Theater, the Mark Taper form and Walt Disney Concert Hall all have their special place in the hearts of the Los Angeles people. We recommend that you make your way to their respective websites to see what's going on at the time of your visit and maybe even plan your trip with their calender in mind. You won't be disappointed!

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BERLIN

Berlin Opera House

Staatsoper Unter den Linden

Staatsoper Unter den Linden is the name of the German opera company responsible for the performances in the opera house on the Unter den Linden boulevard. The opera house was first inaugurated in 1741 as the Hofoper (Court Opera) and has since had several renovations and reconstructions. In 1918 the opera house got the name it still has today, Staatsoper under den Linden. The opera company is both performing classical pieces by for example Wagner and Mozart as well as contemporary pieces. If you are in Berlin, we recommend you visit the famous boulevard and check out this historical opera house.

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SEATTLE

Seattle Opera House

Marion Oliver McCaw Hall

Marion Oliver McCaw Hall (McCaw Hall as the locals call it), earlier known as the Civic Auditorium and Seattle Opera House, is the primary place for performance arts in Seattle. The Seattle Opera and Pacific Northwest Ballet share the building which opened in 1928. An interesting detail is that the World's Fair in 1962 took place here. Song and dance from the entire world were showcased and panel discussions about everything from science and technology to philosophy and religion took place on the scene of the opera house. Pay their website a visit to know more about what will happen when you are there!

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GOTHENBURG

Gothenburg Opera House

Inaugurated in 1991, the Gothenburg Opera is relatively new, surrounded by ports and nice cafés and bars in an area definitely worth a walk. The modern building offers guided tours both in Swedish and English and a restaurant, as well as a wide range of performances that you should check out in case you find one interesting!

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VANCOUVER

Vancouver Opera House

Queen Elizabeth Theatre

Located in downtown Vancouver, the Queen Elizabeth Theatre is the main venue for performance arts in general and opera in particular in Vancouver. The Vancouver Opera and Ballet BC is the second biggest opera company in all of Canada and they are situated in this amazing opera house, founded in 1959. If you are in town during Christmas time, we highly recommend that you take a short walk down W Georgia Street to the annual Christmas market to get a taste of the wonderful candied apples from one of the stands there.

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VIENNA

Vienna Opera House

Wiener Staatsoper

Built in Neo-Renaissance style by architects August Sicard von Sicardsburg and Eduard van der Null, the Wiener Staatsoper is one of the most iconic European 19th century opera houses. One of the most intriguing aspects of the building is the availability of standing room tickets, which are considerably cheaper than normal tickets, costing only between 3 and 4 euro. This is not only a peculiar way of enjoying opera, it has also become the way in which the most vocal opera enthusiasts experience opera in Vienna. Because of this, the crowd in this section is usually very loud in expressing their opinion of the performance, which can be quite the experience in its own right. Just don't forget to bring a scarf, it is used to reserve a spot so that you can explore the opera house while you wait for the show to start.

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OSLO

Oslo Opera House

Operahuset

Built in 2007, Operahuset is a contemporary eye-catching opera house located on the shore of the Bjorvika waters. As impressive as the scale of the building is, being the largest cultural building in Norway, what is even more impressive is the creative design where visitors can walk up on slopes on either side of the building to reach the rooftop and get a great view of Oslo on one side and the Bjorvika waters on the other side. When you are done with the amazing view and atmosphere, you have still to experience the great repertoire that Operahuset has to offer. Check out their calender to see what is being performed when you are there!

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DIJON

Dijon Opera House

Grand Théâtre de Dijon

Located on Place du Théâtre the Grand Théâtre de Dijon has been the main venue for opera performances since its inauguration in November 1828. Designed by architects Jacques Cellerier and Simon Vallot in Neo-classical style, the beauty of this building was formally appreciated in 1975 when the exterior of the building was classified as a historical monument of France. The opera company that is residing in the building is called Opéra de Dijon. Every season they change their repertoire, usually by following different country based themes, for example by one season exclusively performing Czech opera and the next Italian opera. Take a look at their schedule to see what they have in store for your visit!

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BEIJING

Beijing Opera House

National Centre for the Performing Arts

Surrounded by an artificial lake, this beautiful modern masterpiece of a building has been the home for Chinese opera since its inauguration in 2007. Though it is most commonly referred to as looking like a giant egg, the symbol for yin and yang can be seen when the light reflects off the artificial lake, creating a stunning sight and an excellent photo opportunity. The repertoire consists of not only classical opera works from Europe but also features traditional Beijing Opera, an art form that combines music, vocal performance, mime, dance and acrobatics creating spectacular performances that simply must be seen. When you are in Beijing, don't miss visiting this amazing opera house.

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BOSTON

Boston Opera House

The Boston Opera House, located on 539 Washington Street, is mostly known for its ballet and traveling Broadway shows. Its location near the Boston Public Garden makes it a perfect venue to visit when you are looking for both a metropolitan experience and a close connection to nature. While no opera company at the moment is calling the Boston Opera House its home, they still do shows periodically to honor their history. The fantastic Broadway shows more than make up for it though, so make sure to not miss it when you are visiting Boston.

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FRANKFURT

Frankfurt Opera House

Opern- und Schauspielhaus Frankfurt

While Alte Oper may be the more historically interesting building, the home for opera today in Frankfurt is the modern Opern- und Schauspielhaus, located on Untermainanlage 11 near metro station Willy-Brandt-Platz. The old opera house, Alte Oper, is today mostly used as a concert hall with the occasional opera performance taking place there. They are located reasonably close to each other so if you are spending a weekend in Frankfurt, we recommend that you visit both!

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DETROIT

Detroit Opera House

Located on 1526 Broadway Street near the Grand Circus Park this ornate opera house, founded in 1922, has had performances by some of the most popular opera singers in the world including Italian opera guru Laciano Pavarotti. If you are planning to visit the Detroit Opera House we recommend that you take the subway to Grand Circus Park People Mover Station and take a walk in the famous park before you make your way towards the adjacent opera house.

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PORTLAND

Portland Performance Arts Center

Keller Auditorium

Located near the Keller Fountain Park on SW Market Street, this performance arts center is home of the Portland Opera Company. The Keller Auditorium has been around since 1917 and is the main venue for opera and ballet in Portland. Its glass covered exterior makes for an amazing view while you sip on your pre-show drink in the beautiful lobby and bar area. Make sure to check out their programme while you are in Portland and experience both the classical and contemporary pieces the Portland Opera has to offer.

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SOFIA

Sofia Opera House

National Opera and Ballet of Bulgaria

The National Opera and Ballet of Bulgaria is both an opera house and an opera company located in the capital of Bulgaria. Nearby you will find the City Garden containing Temple Sveti Nikolay and Cathedral Sain Alexandar Nevski. It is in other words a historical place where the past and the present coexist telling the story of Sofia. Visit the opera house's website to see what is playing when you are there!

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ULAN BATOR

Ulan Bator Opera House

The National Academic Theatre of Opera and Ballet of Mongolia

Inaugurated in 1963 to the sound of Tchaikovsky's Eugene Onegin, The National Academic Theatre of Opera and Ballet of Mongolia has since been the main venue for opera and ballet in Mongolia. With a facade covered in orange-red with eight great pillars in front of the entrance, this national opera house is a representation of classical Mongolian architecture. It is located in the middle of the city center where you will also find The Palace of Independence, the Government Building and the Central Cultural Palace. In other words, it is a great place to visit when you want to immerse yourself in Mongolian culture and history.

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VILNIUS

Lithuania Opera House

Lithuanian National Opera and Ballet Theatre

Founded in 1974, The Lithuanian National Opera and Ballet Theatre is located near the Neris River in central Vilnius and is the main venue for opera and ballet in Lithuania. Apart from classical ballet and opera pieces it also features the national operas of Lithuania. If you are looking for what makes Lithuania special, this modern glass clad opera house will deliver. Check out their schedule on their website to see what is happening when you are there!

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RIGA

Riga Opera House

Latvian National Opera House

This magnificent Latvian opera house was constructed in the 1863 by the Russian architect Ludwig Bohnstedt. It is located near the Pilsetas Canal in the old parts of Riga. Outside the venue is a marvellous garden in which you can take a relaxing walk before the show starts. On their website you can see their full schedule and buy tickets with prices ranging from the more exclusive seating to very affordable prices. Make sure to not miss this historical landmark when you are in Riga!

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KIEV (KYIV)

Kiev Opera House

National Opera of Ukraine

Located near the university area this early 20th century opera house was designed by Victor Schröter and is the main venue for performance arts in Kiev. The opera house is made in Neo-Renaissance style with an interior influenced by classical style with a modern twist. The National Opera of Ukraine is most known for its huge stage which is one of the biggest and most advanced in Europe. Be sure to not miss this creative masterpiece of a building when you are in Kiev!

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TBILISI

Tbilisi Opera House

Tbilisi Opera and Ballet Theatre

Inaugurated in April 1851, the Tbilisi Opera and Ballet Theatre is the main venue for opera in Georgia. Located near the Mtkvari river, this Moorish Revival style opera house (an architectural style that was inspired by oriental design) has been the heart of culture in Tbilisi for over hundred years. The opera house suffered some problems during a problematic period in the 1990's where the opera house and other cultural institutions didn't receive governmental funds. Today though, the theater is back to its former glory and is a must visit if you are the kind of visitor who is looking for a cultural experience.

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ZURICH

Zürich Opera House

Opernhaus Zürich

Founded in 1834, the Opernhaus Zürich was the home of Richard Wagner's great works during his period away from Germany. Since the late 19th century the Zürich Opera has resided here and their world class performances can still be enjoyed to this day. Located at the top of the great lake of Zürichsee, this Neo-baroque opera house is a must see for the culturally inclined visitor.

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GUANGZHOU

Guangzhou Opera House

Designed by Iraqi architect Zaha Hadid, this ultra modern opera house, completed in 2010, is as beautiful on the outside as it is on the inside. It is located near the Zhujiang River on one side and The Grand Theatre on the other. The Guangzhou Opera House is the biggest opera house in southern China and is one of the biggest in the nation, only being outdone by Beijing's National Centre for the Performing Arts and Shanghai Grand Theatre. Not only is it big but also stunning to look at with its erratically shaped walls creating a shape that almost resembles a science fiction-like spaceship. Inside you can listen to amazing opera performances both from local talents but also from touring opera artists. Don't miss this architectural gem while visiting Guangzhou.

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MANCHESTER

Manchester Opera House

Opera House Manchester

Located on Quay Street in Manchester, this opera house is the main site for touring performance arts including opera, theater and musicals in Manchester. It was founded in the early 20th century, but its place as an institute for the fine arts has not always been a certainty. During a brief five year period in the 80s, due to economical issues, it was mainly used as a bingo hall. Now days though it is back to its earlier glory and is a great place to visit when you are in need of a culture boost.

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TOULOUSE

Toulouse Opera House

Théâtre du Capitole

Located in between Square Charles de Gaulle, Place Du Capitole and Mairie de Toulouse museum, the Théâtre du Capitole is literally in the middle of a cultural center in Toulouse. Apart from being an opera house Théâtre du Capitole is also an opera company responsible for the fantastic opera music performed at the venue. It is part of a professional association of opera companies in France called Réunion des Opéras de France insuring the quality of opera in all of France. Don't forget to check out their schedule before your visit to see what is happening when you are there!

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YEREVAN

Yerevan Opera House

Armenian National Academic Theater of Opera and Ballet

In the middle of Freedom Square adjacent the beautiful Swan Lake, the Armenian National Academic Theater of Opera and Ballet can be found. Inaugurated in 1939 and rebuilt in 1953 and 2002, this circular, dome-like building, designed by architect Alexander Tamanian, is probably the most beautiful structure in Yerevan. Inside the building you will find two auditoriums: the Aram Khatchaturian concert hall which is used for concerts and Alexander Spendiaryan Opera and Ballet National Theater where the local opera company puts on amazing shows, often locally created. Make your way to their website to see what is playing when you are there!

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EDMONTON

Edmonton Performing Arts Centre

Northern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium

The Northern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium is the home of the Edmonton Opera, an over 50 year old opera company known for its inspired performances. Their productions includes the usual classics and some contemporary pieces and they are usually putting up three to five different productions each season. Apart from opera a guest of the great Canadian city of Edmonton can also attend concerts of all kinds in this modern performance arts venue.

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PLOVDIV

Plovdiv Opera House

State Opera

The Plovdiv Opera House was founded in 1953 and became the State Opera in 2010. Located nearby is the Tsar Simeon Garden, a park with the famous 'Singing Fountains' honoring the opera tradition in the city. The present opera company perform both Bulgarian works as well as classical pieces and they sometimes do performances on the nearby hill where an antique amphitheater from roman times is located. These magical performances are something we really recommend you to try and time with your visit as they are certain to send chills down your spine.

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CATANIA

Catania Opera House

Teatro Massimo Bellini

Located on the south-eastern side on the island of Sicily, the Teatro Massimo Bellini, honoring the late local composer Vincenzo Bellini, is the cultural pride of Catania. The history of the opera house ranges back to the devastating earthquake of 1693, where Catania was left completely ruined. In the town meetings that followed, plans were made to restore Catania including building a grand theater which could match the desires of the Catanian people to restore and expand the city. Finally in 1890, the opera house that we can visit today was inaugurated, in all its Sicilian Baroque glory. Make sure to not miss it when you are visiting the beautiful island of Sicily!

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CORK

Cork Opera House

Located near the River Lee in Cork, Ireland, this huge stage for arts performances is one of the most classic buildings in Ireland. Rebuilt by architect Scott Tallon Walker in 1963 and by Murray O Laoire in 2000, this opera house has been active since its founding in 1855 and has been home of performance arts in Ireland since then. Standing on the legs of its great history, this opera house is a great combination of the old and the new. Being the only purpose built opera house in the country, this is a must venue to visit for the opera interested traveler.

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CAPE TOWN

Cape Town Opera House

Artscape Theatre Centre

Located near the Cape Town harbor, this multi-purpose performing arts complex is home to Cape Town Opera, the main opera company of Cape Town formed in 1999. The company is however not exclusive to the Artscape Theatre Centre but it is there they spend most of their time. The building features three auditoriums where the opera house is the biggest seating 1487 people. Don't miss visiting this cultural center when you are in Cape Town!

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ALEXANDRIA

Alexandria Opera House

Sayyid Darwish Theatre

This Egyptian opera house, originally named Teatro Mohamed Ali in 1921 when it was founded, is now called Sayyid Darwish Theatre or simply The Alexandria Opera House. Sayyid Darwish was a famous Egyptian singer and composer who was the main figure behind the sound of the Egyptian national anthem. The Sayyid Darwish Theatre is a humble but beautiful cultural landmark that in the year 2000 was made part of the National Heritage list of Egypt. Make sure to pay it a visit when you are in Alexandria!

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SHANGHAI

Shanghai Opera House

Shanghai Geju Yuan

While the Shanghai Opera House is called just that, opera house, it is not technically an opera house. However, technicalities aside, it is still the main venue for opera performances in Shanghai as the Shanghai Opera Company resides here. They are both performing European classic pieces as well as local Chinese operas. The building is a beautiful mix of modern design and traditional architecture as the roof is in the style of traditional Chinese roof tops but with a modern steel twist. If you are interested in enjoying some amazing opera in a beautiful venue, the Shanghai Opera House is a must visit!

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HONG KONG

Hong Kong Opera House

Hong Kong Cultural Centre

Inaugurated in 1989, this multi-purpose venue is the home of Hong Kong opera. The building contain three auditoriums, the Concert Hall, the Grand Theatre and the Studio Theatre. The Grand Theatre, seating 1734 people, was designed with opera in mind and is being used as such. Located near the harbor, one can take the Star Ferry boats from the Hong Kong Island and enjoy the fantastic view of this skyscraper rich city after the show. Take a look at their schedule to see what is playing when you are there!

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ASTANA

Astana Opera House

Palace of Peace and Reconciliation

Opened in 2006, this highly modern pyramid shaped multi-purpose building is not only home of opera in Astana, it is also a center for humanitarianism and a tribute to diversity featuring museums, exhibitions and accommodations for all major religions. Located in the great Presidential Park, it is quite the spiritual place to visit and a great place to enjoy performance arts. Make sure to not miss this amazing venue when you are visiting the capital of Kazakhstan.

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KUALA LUMPUR

Kuala Lampur Opera House

Istana Budaya

Istana Budaya translates to The Palace of Culture, which is a fitting name for this modern Malaysian performance arts venue founded in 1999. Its design is inspired by classical Malaysian residential architecture using it as a template giving it a modern and distinguished look. It is located near the beautiful park Tasik Titiwangsa where you can take a relaxing walk before the show starts. Make sure to visit their website before your visit to see what the opera house has in store for your stay in Kuala Lampur!

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MUSCAT

Muscat Opera House

Royal Opera House Muscat

Located in the Shati Al-Qurm district, this multi-purpose performance arts complex is the main venue for opera in Oman. Inaugurated in 2011, the Royal Opera House in Muscat is a perfect representation of modern Omani architecture with its cubically formed ledge-like sections in the structure, all in chalk-white, make for an amazing sight. Apart from the beautiful architecture, the opera house also features state of the art technology. For example, it is the first opera house in the world using the so called mode23 seatback system, giving the audience valuable information on a display in front of them, for example translation or text to accompany the opera performance. Performing in the opera house is both world famous artists as well as local Arab singers. Don't miss this new opera pearl when you are visiting Oman!

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SINGAPORE

Singapore Opera House

Esplanade – Theatres on the Bay

Designed by the architectural firm DP Architects, this modern opera house built in 2002 is the new cultural pride of Singapore. Sitting in the harbor of Singapore, the opera house consists of two circular shaped buildings, clad in glass and aluminium, the latter to protect the building from becoming a greenhouse in the warm climate of Singapore. Inside the performance arts complex you can visit several different auditoriums, including the Concert hall, the theater and the recital studio. For the opera enthusiast, the theater is formed like a traditional European opera house and here you will find first class opera performances. The building also features the first library in Singapore totally devoted to the performing arts. The Esplanade is one of the most active performance arts centers in the world so you can be pretty sure there will be something amazing in store for you when you get there.

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SEOUL

Seoul Opera House

Seoul Arts Center

The Seoul Arts Center was established in 1988 and is a massive performance arts center located in the heart of Seoul. The center features several buildings with their own purpose, including the Concert Hall, IBK Chamber Hall, the Recital Hall and the Opera House. Since it was ready for use in 1993, the Opera House has been a landmark of the arts center sticking out with its clever design inspired by the traditional Korean Got hat. The Korean National Opera reside here together with several other national performance arts companies, so make sure to have a look at their website to see what they have in store for you when you are there.

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ANKARA

Ankara Opera House

Opera Sahnesi

Designed by Turkish architect Sevki Balmumcu and inaugurated as an opera house in 1948, the Opera Sahnesi is, for the time being, the biggest venue for opera and ballet in Ankara. We say for the time being because since 2005 a venue is being built close by that will probably function as the main home of opera in Ankara. Until then however you can enjoy the performances of the Ankara State Opera and Ballet. The building is located near the beautiful park Genclik in which we recommend a pre-show walk to create that special atmosphere than a night of opera is guaranteed to deliver.

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ISTANBUL

Istanbul Opera House

Süreyya Opera House

The Süreyya Opera House might just be the oldest building that has spent the least amount of time being an opera house. From its founding in 1927, it spent just three years being a theater and then from 1930 to 2005 it served mainly as a cinema and partly as a theater stage. It was first in 2007 that the building was remodelled and renovated into being a state of the art opera house. Thereby, Süreyya Pasha's dream after 80 years came true and the people of Istanbul can experience the magic of the opera.

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HO CHI MINH

Saigon Opera House

Also known as The Municipal Theatre of Ho Chi Minh City, this opera house is another one in Vietnam that was made during the French colonization of Vietnam. Built as a smaller counterpart of the Hanoi Opera House and inspired by Opéra Garnier in Paris, the opera house in Ho Chi Minh is a reminder if the history of both the country and the city. It is located near the Saigon River in the cultural center of Ho Chi Minh where you will also find The Golden Dragon Water Puppet Theater and the Notre-Dame Cathedral, which also was built in the time of the French colonization. No matter if you want to enjoy first class opera or a history lesson, the Saigon Opera House is something you will not want to miss!

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TIRANA

Tirana Opera House

Palace of Culture of Tirana

Inaugurated in 1963, this opera house is one of few in the world that has stood for that long without being reconstructed or extensively renovated. Because of that, it is almost like time traveling when you enter it. Architecturally, it is in the same style as many other great buildings in Eastern Europe that was built in this time with a very stripped down design. Performing here is the National Opera and Ballet of Albania, giving the audience amazing performances since the inauguration. Don't miss visiting this centrally located opera hourse when you are in Tirana!

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GRAZ

Graz Opera House

Oper Graz

Designed by architect gurus Ferdinand Fellner and Herman Helmer in their vintage Neo-baroque style, Oper Graz is one of the most beautiful buildings in the second largest city of Austria. The opera house is located near Platz der Menschenrechte, the great park of Graz. Opera has a long tradition in the city of Graz. For example, the people in Graz could see the early performances of Mozart's great works in the late 18th century. Today you can hear some of the greatest classical opera that Austria has to offer in this beautiful opera house. Don't miss it when you are in Graz!

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SALZBURG

Salzburg Opera House

Großes Festspielhaus

While the city of Salzburg has a long tradition with opera, being the hometown of the prolific composer Mozart, in those times the performances usually took place in churches and at the court of the Prince Archbishop instead of opera houses. There are several venues where you still can enjoy opera performances in Salzburg, the biggest being Großes Festspielhaus, which is not only the biggest in Salzburg but in all of Austria even bigger than the Wiener Staatsoper in Vienna. Apart from traditional opera performances, the Großes Festspielhaus is also one of the venues for The Salzburg Festival, which is a performance arts festival held since 1920 during late July and August in Salzburg. Make sure to not miss it when you are visiting!

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BAKU

Baku Opera House

Akhundov Azerbaijan State Academic Opera and Ballet Theater

Formerly known as the Mailov Theatre, the Akhundov Azerbaijan State Academic Opera and Ballet Theater was built in 1911 and is still the principal place for opera in Baku. An interesting fact about the building is that it is one of the speediest constructions of an opera house in history. Built during the span of 10 months in a 24/7 cycle, involving over 200 workers, it is as much a constructional feat as it is an organizational one. The reason behind all of this? A bet between the two construction magnates Zeynalabdin Taghiyev and Daniel Mailov, where the former expressed his doubts about the latter's ability to construct it in time. Mailov won the bet and Taghiyev honored the bet, paying all of the building expenses.

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BRUSSELS

Brussels Opera House

Théâtre Royal de la Monnaie

Théâtre Royal de la Monnaie or simply la Monnaie as it is often called, is located near De Brouckere metro station in the central parts of Brussels. Residing here is the National Opera of Belgium and they perform traditional as well new innovative opera works from all over the world. La Monnaie is the main venue for opera and ballet in Belgium and is the best place to go to in Brussels if you are a culturally inclined visitor.

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SPLIT

Split Opera House

Croatian National Theatre in Split

As in the case of the Rijeka Opera House, this Croatian opera house is more commonly called HNK Split by the locals. Located near Park Josipa in the old parts of Split, the surrounding area of the opera house is as much a tourist attraction as the opera house itself. Today it is one of the premier opera houses in Croatia and host around 300 performances every year. They also host the Splitsko Ijeto during the summer and the Marulićevi dani festival in april. Make sure to not miss it when you are in town!

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ZAGREB

Zagreb Opera House

Croatian National Theatre in Zagreb

Designed by famous architects and masterminds Ferdinand Fellner and Herman Helmer who are responsible for many of the beautiful 19th century opera houses in Europe, the national theater of Croatia has been the main venue for opera in Zagreb since its opening in 1895. The opera house has featured some of the best artists in the world and continues to put on world class opera performances each season. Make sure to check out their schedule while you are in town!

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RIJEKA

Rijeka Opera House

Croatian National Theatre Ivan pl. Zajc in Rijeka

By the locals usually called HNK Zajc, this is the main opera house of Rijeka and home to the Croatian Symphonic Opera and Ballet. Inaugurated in 1885 and designed by the famous architects Ferdinand Fellner and Hermann Helmer who were responsible for many great opera houses in Europe in the late 19th and early 20th century. During the introductory performance the first light bulb in Rijeka lit up the opera house to the amazement of the people in attendance. Today, it takes more than a light bulb to please the opera goers in the city, so luckily for the HNK Zajc, their performances are of world class caliber.

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COPENHAGEN

Copenhagen Opera House

Operaen

Inaugurated in 2005, this Neo-futuristic opera house created by architect Henning Larsen is the national opera house of Denmark. It is quite the remarkable building and in 2008 it was recognized by the International Association for Bridge and Structural Engineering's Outstanding Structure Award, mainly for its creative roof structure where the inspiration for the design came from that of modern bridges. Musically, the Royal Danish Opera has called this opera house home since its inauguration and continue to produce amazing shows for the Danish public.

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TALLINN

Tallinn Opera House

Estonia Theatre

Designed by Finnish architects Armas Lindgren and Wivi Lönn in 1913, this Estonian opera house is home to the Estonian National Opera and the Estonian National Symphony Orchestra. Nearby you will find the beautiful Tammsaare Park where you can go for a nice stroll before the show starts. If you are in Tallinn, be sure to check out their schedule and enjoy some first class Estonian opera!

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HELSINKI

Helsinki Opera House

The Finnish National Opera

Located in the bay of Töölönlahti, Helsinki's new opera house was inaugurated in 1993. Residing here is the Finnish National Opera, the main opera company of Finland. Up until 1993, the opera company had the Alexander Theater as home base, but since the new opera house was built, opera performances in Helsinki moved to the new building and the Alexander Theater is now mostly used for theater performances. The opera house usually stage around 140 performances each year, so check out their calendar when you are there to see if they are playing!

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BORDEAUX

Bordeaux Opera House

Grand Théâtre de Bordeaux

Home of the Opéra National de Bordeaux, this 18th century building is one of the oldest active opera houses in the world. Designed by architect Victor Louis in Neo-classical style, the great pillars on the facade is one of the most recognizable features of Grand Théâtre de Bordeaux. Located near the Garonne river, if you are there in the spring or summer time, we highly recommend a boat ride on this romantic river after the show.

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AVIGNON

Avignon Opera House

Opéra d'Avignon

Originally built in 1825 and later rebuilt after being burnt down in the disastrous fires in 1846, this French opera house has had continuous great performances for almost two centuries. It is located on 1 Rue Racine in central Avignon. While you are in the area, we also recommend that you visit Maison Jean Vilar, an exhibition venue that is located close by.

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LIMOGES

Limoges Opera House

Opéra de Limoges

Inaugurated in March 1963, Opéra de Limoges is the main venue for opera in Limoges. The building was designed by local architect Pierre Sonrel and seats 1484 people. It is located in the center of Limoges attached to Limoges Conservatory, which is also a nice place to visit when you are strolling around the area. While opera is the main interest of Opéra de Limoges, the program is also open to many other performing arts including dance, theater and circus arts. In other words, it is a perfect place to visit when you are in need of a culture boost.

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MARSEILLE

Marseille Opera House

Opéra Municipal de Marseille

Marseille as a city has a long history with opera, being the second city in France to have an opera house. This opera house however was built a little bit later, having its gates open to the public from 1924 until present day. Located near the Vieux Port, it truly is a scenic place to spend a day. Before or after the show we recommend a walk around the port and maybe a visit to the Mairie de Marseille museum located on Rue de la Loge. There are also several great restaurants nearby. While at the opera, you then get to listen to the best opera performances that Marseille has to offer.

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STRASBOURG

Strasbourg Opera House

Opéra national du Rhin

Located near the river Ill and the great Monument aux morts de Strasbourg, the Opéra national du Rhin has been the primary place for opera in Strasbourg since the early 18th century, though with several redesigns over the years. Today you can enjoy the finest opera and ballet that Strasbourg has to offer in this historically loaded opera house.

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RENNES

Rennes Opera House

Opéra de Rennes

Inaugurated in 1836, Opéra de Rennes has since been the main place for opera and performance arts in Rennes. The building has a long history and is an important part of the city. So much so that it got classified as a historical monument in 1961. The opera performed ranges from local works to classical pieces from all over Europe, served in an auditorium with excellent acoustics. The opera house is located near Place du Parlement de Bretagne, which is a nice little park in the city center where you can enjoy a drink after the show.

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VERSAILLES

Versailles Opera House

Opéra Royal de Versailles

Located on the edge of the Gardens of Versailles where you can find the estate of Marie-Antoinette, this opera house was inaugurated in 1770. It is one of few opera houses that has been able to stand the test of time, as it is still to this day an active venue for opera performances. After the French Revolution in 1789 and the departure of the royal family, the opera house was left unused since its lavishness and dependence on royal patronage made it a symbol if the out of control aristocracy in the country. It opened again in 1837 and after a few renovations and restorations, the opera house we can visit today is not only a beautiful opera house with fantastic acoustics, it is also a reminder of the history of France and the finer arts impact on society.

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MONTPELLIER

Montpellier Opera House

Opéra Comédie

Inaugurated in 1888, Opéra Comédie is the main venue for opera in Montpellier. It is the home of the opera company Opéra national de Montpellier, which each season give amazing performances. The opera features two auditoriums in which Opéra national de Montpellier give their performances. The primary auditorium seats 1200 people and the Salle Molière concert hall is a little bit more intimate seating 350 people. The opera house is located on Place de la Comédie, a thriving square in the heart of the city. Don't miss this opera house when you are in Montpellier.

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NANTES

Nantes Opera House

Théâtre Graslin

Walking down the famous Jean Jacques Rousseau road from Jean-Baptiste Daviais park, you will find this 18th century opera house, named after Jean-Louis Graslin. Built in Italian style by French architect and urban planner Mathurin Crucy, who is also responsible for the architectural programme which helped shape Nantes into what we see today, the Théâtre Graslin is the main venue for opera in Nantes. It is also home of the Nantes Opera, and is a must visit if you are looking for a world class musical experience.

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COLOGNE

Cologne Opera House

Oper der Stadt Köln

Designed by German architect, Wilhelm Riphahn, Oper der Stadt Köln has been home to the opera company with the same name since its inauguration in 1957. It is located on the culturally oriented Offenbachplatz where you can also find the performance arts venue Theater am Dom. Oper der Stadt Köln has been closed for extensive renovations since 2010 and is scheduled to reopen in November 2015. It is exciting times for the culturally inclined German people who are anticipatingly awaiting the reopening.

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MUNICH

Munich Opera House

Nationaltheater München

Home of the Bavarian State Opera, Nationaltheater München is the primary venue for opera in Munich. The building has gone through substantial changes over the years. The theater we see today is a result of the renovations and extensions made in 1963, featuring the world's third largest stage where only Opéra Bastille and the Grand Theatre in Warsaw is bigger. The opera performed is not only of the highest quality, it also has a history of having world premières. In the late 1800's, this was home to Richard Wagner's many great works and today the opera house still features some of the best opera performances in the world.

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DUSSELDORF

Dusseldorf Opera House

Opernhaus Düsseldorf

Inaugurated as a theater in 1875, Opernhaus Düsseldorf has been the main venue for cultural events in Düsseldorf since then. In 1921, the ownership changed from being municipally owned to being in the hands of an opera company and thereby making Opernhaus Düsseldorf what it is today, a venue by opera enthusiasts for opera enthusiasts. Nearby the opera house you will find the Landskrone lake, a great place for a post-performance walk!

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LEIPZIG

Leipzig Opera House

Oper Leipzig

Built in 1693, Oper Leipzig (at the time called Opernhaus am Brühl) is the third oldest active opera house in Europe after La Fenice and the Hamburg State Opera. The opera house we see today is the result of a complete reconstruction following the destruction of the old opera house in bombings during the Second World War. The reconstruction was made with love for the old building, keeping the same style and details as the opera house was known for. The building is home to the Oper Leipzig opera company, who regularly put on awe-inspiring opera performances for the German public as well as for tourists visiting the great city of Leipzig.

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DRESDEN

Dresden Opera House

Semperoper

Located on Theaterplatz 2 near the river of Elbe, Semperoper is a perfect place to visit when you are in need of a cultural boost when visiting the eastern parts of Germany. Standing tall in front of the Frederick Augustus statue, this lavish opera house, made by German architect Gottfried Semper, is quite the sight. The opera house was rebuilt in 1869 by Sempers son, Manfred since Gottfried was in exile following his involvement in an uprising in Dresden in may 1849. Performing in the opera house today is both local and international talents inspiring the audience with amazing opera and ballet performances.

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STUTTGART

Stuttgart Opera House

Staatstheater Stuttgart

Located near the Oberer Schlossgarten park and Lake Eckensee, the Staatstheater Stuttgart designed by acclaimed German architect Max Littmann, this opera house is home of Opera Stuttgart, Stuttgart Ballet and Stuttgart Drama Theatre. Noteworthy trivia regarding this building is that it was one of very few opera houses that survived the bombings during the Second World War and has since its founding in 1912 stayed intact and true to its history. Make your way to their website to check out what is playing when you are there and also book tickets from several different pricing categories.

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ATHENS

Athen Opera House

After 150 years of a growing opera tradition, the company Greek National Opera was founded in 1940, right before Italy’s declaration of war to Greece. Today, the Greek National Opera holds performances in three different venues plus one under construction named Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Centre. The three stages actually used are the main location for opera and ballet Olympia Theatre, the Acropol Theatre presenting operetta and plays for children and the Lyric Stage, an experimental studio. Take a look at the programme offered during your visit!

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REYKJAVIK

Reykjaviks Opera House

Harpa

While Harpa technically is more of a concert hall than an opera house, it is still home of the national opera of Iceland and Iceland's symphony orchestra. Harpa is a modern concert hall, build in 2011 and is designed by the Danish architect firm Henning Larsen Architects in collaboration with the Danish-Icelandic artist Olafur Eliasson. The building comprise of a steel structure covered with geometrically shaped glass sheets in different colors and is truly a sight for sore eyes and a perfect photo opportunity for the traveler with photo as a passion. Harpa's location in the harbor means that a trip there is a perfect opportunity to take a walk out on the Ingólfsgardur pier, maybe with a loved one and an ice cream as company.

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VERONA

Verona Arena

Arena di Verona

Arena di Verona is a Roman amphitheater built in the 1st century and is one of the oldest venues for opera and other performance arts. It is famous for the amazing grandiose opera performances that take place there, seating up to 15000 people. Apart from operas Arena di Verona also has been host to some of the most famous popular artists and bands in the world including Pink Floyd, Paul McCartney, Dire Straits and Whitney Houston just to name a few. Check out their schedule and plan your trip accordingly, you will not be disappointed!

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MILAN

Milan Opera House

Teatro alla Scala

By the hands of the Neo-classical architect Giuseppe Piermarini, Teatro alla Scala, or simply La Scala as it is often called by the natives, was founded in August 1778 replacing the former Royal Ducal Theatre after a great fire in 1776. In 2004, the latest renovations by the Italian architect Mario Botta was finished. Improvements was made to the sound quality of the opera house as well as some technical developments to prepare the opera for the 21th century while at the same staying faithful to La Scala's renowned history. Make your way to their website to check out what is playing when you are there!

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ROME

Rome Opera House

Teatro dell'Opera di Roma

The Teatro dell'Opera di Roma (Rome Opera House), inaugurated in 1880 is the main venue for Opera in Rome. Since its founding, it has been renovated several times with remodelling and modernization done in 1958 in conjunction with the end of monarchy in Italy. If you are in Rome during the summer time however, Teatro dell'Opera di Roma is not the place to be for the opera enthusiast. Instead, opera performances are being held in the outdoor theater at the Baths of Caracalla, ancient ruins of what used to be public baths between years AD 212 and 217. We highly recommend to attend one of these in the summer as it quite the scenic and unusual setting for an opera performance.

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FLORENCE

Florence Opera House

Opera di Firenze

Situated between the Cascine Park and the historical quarter of Florence you will find the Opera di Firenze. The venue consists of two auditoriums and an outdoor cavea, all dedicated to music including classic and modern operas and concerts. The Opera di Firenze is the first opera venue to choose photography as decoration for the space. The building has a modern design with straight lines and shapes in white, keeping it simple while elegant.

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TURIN

Turin Opera House

Teatro Regio

The Teatro Regio is located on Piazza Castello 215 near the beautiful Giardini Reali park. In the same area you can find the Royal Palace of Turin, the Palazzo Madama and the Museo Diocesano Di Torino. The Teatro Regio has been around for a long time, being founded in the early 18th century, but while the exterior remain true to this time, the interior features an amazing contemporary design being redone in 1973. In the calendar of the opera house you can find both contemporary works as well as classic 19th century operas.

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GENOA

Genoa Opera House

Teatro Carlo Felice

Jumping off at De Ferrari metro station, the Teatro Carlo Felice is a stunning sight. In front of Monumento a Garibaldi the over 100 years old opera house is still standing tall, albeit with some substantial renovations over the years. As with many other old opera houses in Europe, it was torn by war in the middle of the 20th century and was almost completely destroyed apart from the overlaying structure. After the war, the architect Aldo Rossi created what we see today, a beautiful combination of a classic and contemporary opera house.

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BOLOGNA

Bologna Opera House

Teatro Comunale di Bologna

While the exterior may be humble in its looks, when you get inside the Teatro Comunale di Bologna, you will be amazed by the interior design. The venue is huge with beautiful balconies where the attendance can enjoy both local and internationally acclaimed operas. The ceiling is clad with masonry which isn't just stunning to look at, it was also practical at the time it was built in the 18th century to protect the opera house from fires, which was a severe issue for big buildings like opera houses in that time. This didn't stop the building from having its fair share of fires though, and the venue has had several redesigns over the years but the sky-like ceiling is still in place and is a must see.

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VENICE

Venice Opera House

La Fenice

La Fenice has a fiery story behind it. From the time of its foundation in the 18th century until now it has suffered several fires which has caused the opera house to continuously being rebuilt. The latest rebuild was done in 2001 and was designed in a style that was meant to look like the style of European buildings from the 19th century. Aldo Rossi was the architect behind it, and for inspiration used photographs from the film Senso which took place in the now burned down version of the opera house. Located on Campo San Fantin near the Great Canal, its place in Italian culture and history is not to be underestimated and is a must to experience when you visit Venice.

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CAGLIARI

Cagliari Opera House

Teatro Lirico

Located in central Cagliari, this modern opera house was inaugurated in 1993. It is a multi purpose building consisting of not only a remarkable auditorium but also a bar, restaurant, offices, laboratories and a book shop. The exterior as well as the interior design stands out as one of the most lavish and elegant built around this time. Make sure to check out their amazing programme, which by the way is award winning for its innovation.

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PALERMO

Palermo Opera House

Teatro Massimo Vittorio Emanuele

Located on the famous island of Sicily, this huge opera house, one of the biggest in Europe, has stood the test of time, being founded in 1897. In Italy, many people know it for its excellent acoustics and extravagant, Colosseum-like interior design. Situated near the harbor, it is a perfect place to visit if you have arrived by boat from the main land.

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NAPLES

Naples Opera House

Real Teatro di San Carlo

The Real Teatro di San Carlo is located on the Piazza Trieste e Trento near the great harbor of Naples. The opera house was built in 1737 and is one of the oldest active opera houses in the world. The interior may just be one of the most stunning with an astonishing ceiling painting of Apollo. No matter if you are looking for international or local opera, this amazing ornate venue will deliver. The opera season runs from late January to May, so be sure to check out their schedule if you are there around that time of the year.

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SKOPJE

Skopje Opera House

Macedonian Opera and Ballet

Built in the 1980's by an ensemble of architects including Stefan Kacin, Yuri Princes, Bogdan Spindler and Marian Ursic, this modern day opera house has been the pride of Skopje since its founding. Outside you can see three sculptures representing the opera and ballet performance arts and inside you will be floored by the amazing interior design and acoustics. The opera house's vision is to raise the quality of life of the people in Macedonia, so make sure to check out their programme and get ready to have a great experience!

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CHISINAU

Chişinău Opera House

Teatrul Naţional de Operă şi Balet din Republica Moldova

Located in between parks Stefan cel Mare and Catedralei this 1957 opera house has stayed true to its history through the years. Even after the collapse of the Soviet Union, the opera house kept their opera and ballet ensembles intact under the parole 'The show must go on'. Today, both the National Ballet and the National Opera are performing incredible shows. Make sure to check out their programme before you visit!

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MONACO

Monaco Opera House

Opéra de Monte-Carlo

Being a part of the Monte Carlo Casino, Opéra de Monte-Carlo sure is an interesting place for an opera house. Usually one might not consider gambling and card games as part of the finer arts, but in Monaco, the high and the low is accustomed to exist in harmony. Designed by the same architect, Charles Garnier, who made the famous Parisian opera house Palais Garnier, this is a truly exquisite building made to last, being founded in 1879 and is still going strong today. If you are in Monaco and need a break from blinking lights and sounds from one armed bandits, this oasis of an opera house is the perfect place to retreat to.

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AMSTERDAM

Amsterdam Opera House

Stopera

Stopera is a building complex in Amsterdam where both the city hall of Amsterdam and the Dutch national opera and ballet share space. This is also why it is called Stopera, which is a play on the words 'Stadhuis' (city hall in Dutch) and opera. The building was designed by the local talents Cees Dam and Wilhelm Holzbauer in the early parts of the 20th century. Stopera is shaped like a giant massive block with a curved front looking at the city. The facade is covered with red-orange bricks and corrugated metal plates. The round part of the theater is covered with white marble and big windows that gives a panoramic view of the river from the crooked inner foyers. No matter if you are there for the opera or not, it is definitely an area in Amsterdam that you have to visit!

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WARSAW

Warsaw Opera House

Teatr Wielki

The Teatr Wielki (The Grand Theater) is a Neoclassical Opera House and theater complex located near the Ogrod Saski park in central Warsaw. It was founded in 1823, was victim of the Second World War battles and was completely rebuilt in 1965. It has since been home of the National Opera and Ballet of Poland. The repertoire consists of both classical and contemporary pieces by some of the most prominent national artists. Make sure to visit their website to see what is playing when you are there!

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GDANSK

Gdansk Opera House

Opera Studio, Baltic Opera

The State Baltic Opera Theatre founded in 1949 and situated in the Wrzeszcz district is the venue where the Baltic Opera resides, Gdansk’s premier opera company. In 2010 the BBC named the Baltic Opera one of the ten best opera theatres in Europe, among others like London’s Royal Opera House or Barcelona’s Teatre del Liceu. The Baltic Opera Theatre offers a wide range of performances every season, so check their website to see what’s up during your visit! An interesting service the venue offers is the rental of costumes, which could also be fun to do!

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KRAKOW

Krakow Opera House

The Kraków Opera as an institution was founded in postwar Kraków in 1954, but for dozens of years it lacked its own premises. For this reason, performances took place in historic interiors, monuments and even natural areas of the city such as the performances of Madama Butterfly in the Wieliczka Salt Mine in 2003. In autumn 2008, the New House Kraków Opera opened its doors, containing three theatres and a restaurant and designed in modern style visible in its glass-covered walls.

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LISBON

Lisbon Opera House

Teatro Nacional de São Carlos

Built in 1792 by José da Costa e Silva over the previous Teatro Rojo opera house, the Teatro Nacional de São Carlos is the major concert and opera house in Lisbon. From the outside the building is quite simple, but the interior is decorated in rich rococo style. Apart from the season’s repertoire of opera performances, the venue offers many guided tours including a nocturne visit. Check their website to find all the activities!

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MOSCOW

Moscow Opera House

Bolshoi Theatre

The Bolshoi Theatre is the iconic home of Russian ballet and opera. The Bolshoi Ballet and Bolshoi Opera resides here and are amongst the oldest ballet and opera companies in the world, and are considered by experts in the performance arts to be amongst the best as well. Designed by architect Joseph Bové in Neoclassical style, the Bolshoi Teatre is a sure thing to take your breath away.

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BELGRADE

Belgrade Opera House

National Theatre in Belgrade

Inaugurated in 1869 and rebuilt in 1989, this Serbian opera house is not only the musical pride of Serbia, it is also a humanitarian one. During the darkest days in 1999 during the NATO bombings of the capital, the National Theatre in Belgrade was one of few places where the people could get a glimmer of enjoyment. For the symbolic prize of one dinar the Belgrade public got to experience inspired opera performances during the afternoons when there was cease fire. If you are in Belgrade, don't forget to visit this historical opera house that has a special place in the hearts of the local people.

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BRATISLAVA

Bratislava Opera Houses

The Slovak National Theatre (SND), comprising drama, opera, and ballet sections, is one of Slovakia’s greatest cultural institutions. The company holds performances in two halls: the neo-Renaissance SND Historical Building from 1886 and the modern SND New Building opened in 2007. The venues offer drama, opera and ballet performances as well as temporal expositions. Take a look at the website and make sure you check the discounts offered!

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BILBAO

Bilbao Opera House

Teatro Arriaga

Located near the river Ria del Nerviòn O de Bilbao, this Neo-baroque opera house, created by architect Joaquin Rucoba in 1890 is a perfect place to visit to enjoy some of the world's greatest opera. The opera house was rebuilt in the late 80's because of major flooding in Bilbao in which the ground floors were completely under water. Since its rebirth the theater has enjoyed the presence of first class artists and performances and the local opera company has produced works that has traveled all over the world. As a bonus, the amazing Guggenheim museum is located relatively nearby.

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BARCELONA

Barcelona Opera House

Gran Teatre del Liceu

Gran Teatre del Liceu opened their gates to the public in April 1847. The idea was from the start that the opera house was going to be a hotbed for local students of performing arts. Today, the building is one of the most classic opera houses in the world and depending on the seasonal calender you can enjoy both old classics and modern pieces from established local and international talents. Verdi's Aida has for example taken place on the opera scene over 400 times, but opera is not the only thing going on in Gran Teatre del Liceu, also concerts, lectures and other cultural activities and meetings share the space. In case you are in Barcelona, you cannot miss this historical building!

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MADRID

Madrids Opera House

Teatro Real

Teatro Real, or El Real as the locals call it, is located in close proximity of the Plaza de Oriente park where visitors also can gaze upon the Royal Palace of Madrid. The opera house opened their gates in November 1850 after over 30 years of planning and construction. Every year, around 20 different opera pieces are performed here including both local productions but also collaborations with other major European opera houses. If you want to know more about Teatro Real while you are in Madrid we highly recommend taking part in their guided tours that are available in many languages where you get to learn everything there is to know about the history of opera and the building. You can also attend the workshops that the opera house arrange, which can be a cool thing to try out!

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SEVILLE

Seville Opera House

Teatro de la Maestranza

Teatro de la Maestranza is located on Paseo de Cristóbal Colón 22, near the river called Canal de Alfononso XIII. It is a relatively newly built opera house, being founded in 1991 in conjunction with the Seville Expo which was being held here the year after. This circular building is mostly devoted to opera, but you can also experience some traditional zarzuela, which is a Spanish form of operetta. During your stay in Seville we recommend that you take a look at their calendar and hopefully you can experience some traditional Spanish performance arts.

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VALENCIA

Valencia Opera House

Palau de les Arts Reina Sofia

This modern opera house, with a design resembling a motorcycle helmet, is the newly found love of the Valencian people. Built by the world famous architect Santiago Calatrava it is the tallest opera house in the world featuring amazing acoustics and state of the art facilities. Residing here is The Queen Sofia Company, a company for performance arts hosting symphonic concerts, operas and poetry recitals. This gigantic landmark is hard to miss when you are in Valencia, being visible from the entire city. Check out their calendar and go experience the beautiful opera that the Palau de les Arts Reina Sofia has to offer!

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MALMö

Malmö Opera House

The Malmö Opera is considered the main opera house in Southern Sweden, situated in the Oresund Region comprising as well Eastern Denmark. The building itself is beautiful, especially the foyer with its marble staircases and large glass windows. This cosy opera offers excellent performances with great acoustics in a luxurious atmosphere, so check their programme during your visit if you are interested!

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BERN

Bern Opera House

Stadttheater Bern

The Stadttheater Bern is a theatre and opera house in the city of Bern offering over 300 performances every season including classic and modern ones. Among the complementary services you can find Ballet & Wine, a ballet rehearsal accompanied by a wine tasting experience. Go to their website to find out this season’s program!

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BELFAST

Belfast Opera House

Grand Opera House

The Grand Opera House is the name of the most prolific opera house in Northern Ireland. Designed in Victorian style by one of the most famous architects of the time, Frank Matcham, the Grand Opera House opened their doors to the anticipation of the Irish public in 1895. In 2006 an extension of the opera was made in which smaller concerts and comedy performances are being held. The Grand Opera House's vision is to enrich peoples lives, so go ahead and let them do just that by visiting their remarkable venue.

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GLASGOW

Glasgow Opera House

Clyde Auditorium

This fantastically designed opera house, founded in 1997 is one of the most iconic sights in Glasgow. The design has drawn upon the imaginations of the Glasgow people in such ways that the Clyde Auditorium more often is being referred to as 'The Armadillo' and looking at the ceiling and back of the building, it is hard to argue with the natives. While it was not the intent of the architect, who stated that the design is inspired by the heritage of the city as a port town, many people have compared the design to that of the Sydney Opera House. It is located near the Clyde River where you can take a relaxing walk after the guaranteed phenomenal performances that the venue has to offer.

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SãO PAULO

São Paulo Opera House

Theatro Municipal

Teatro Municipal, founded in 1911, is one of the most influential and important opera houses in South America. It is located in the Praça Floriano near the Carioca metro station. At the time when it first opened its gates, the performance arts in Brazil and South America was in need of a revitalization and in 1922, when the week of modern arts was hosted here, that is just what happened. The influences from European culture that long had weighed down the creative talents of Brazil where now replaced with a renewed confidence in the local and in what makes South America special. When you are in Brazil, don't forget about this historically important landmark!

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SANTIAGO DE CHILE

Santiago Opera House

Teatro Municipal

The Municipal Theatre of Santiago is the biggest and most important opera house in all of Chile. Located on Agustinas 794 near the Cerro Sta Lucia park, this French Neoclassical style opera house made by the French-Chilean architect Claudio Brunet Des Baines is the most prominent place for the performing arts in Santiago. This classic opera house is since 1974 declared a national monument and is arguably one of the most famous buildings in Santiago. From the day it was founded in 1857 to this day it continues to be an excellent place to go to experience great ballet and opera.

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BOGOTA

Bogotà Opera House

Teatro de Cristóbal Colón (The Christopher Columbus Theatre)

Located on Calle 10 with many of Bogotà's best museums nearby, the Teatro de Cristóbal Colón has been giving the Colombian people amazing opera performances since its founding in 1892. Italian architect Pietro Cantini was responsible for the design and construction which is why the Opera House bear similarities to many Neoclassical European opera houses built at the same time. Make sure to pay them a visit when you are there and check out some of the most amazing South American opera that they have to offer.

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MEDELLIN

Medellín Opera House

Medellín Metropolitan Theatre

The Medellín Metropolitan Theatre came to be after the need for a bigger and better arena for opera started to grow in Medellin in 1987. Located in downtown Medellin in the commercial district, this grand brick clad opera house is the perfect place to retreat to when you are in need of a culture boost. On their website you can see their full schedule, so make your way there and have a look what they have to offer!

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HAIPHONG

Haiphong Opera House

Nhà hát lớn Hải Phòng

Located in the third biggest city of Vietnam, the Haiphong Opera House has been a mainstay for performance arts since its founding in 1912. Built during the French colonization, the style of the building is that of Neo-classicism made by a French architect who was inspired by the renowned Parisian opera house Palais Garnier. Due to its historical roots and its unique design contrasting traditional Vietnamese design, it is one of the most important buildings in Vietnam and a reminder of the colonial history. Today, amazing opera pieces are being performed here, so make sure to pay it a visit when you are in Haiphong!

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VARNA

Varna Opera Theatre

The Varna Opera Theatre is the home of opera in Varna and has been that since they first opened their gates in 1947. Designed by architect Nikola Lazarov, this opera house is especially beautiful at night when the red and white exterior meets the light from the moon. Here you can enjoy the best opera and ballet that Varna has to offer and if you become especially keen on the Varna style of opera, you can also see them tour all over Europe. You can find the opera theater near the City Garden on Ruse street, so make sure to not miss it when you are in town!

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TIANJIN

Tianjin Opera House

The Tianjin Grand Theatre

The Grand Theatre in Tianjin is one of many examples of the cultural boom that is happening in China. Expensive, lavish and stunning opera houses seem to pop up every few years in tune to the growing economy of China, and this remarkably designed opera house is no different. What is different however is the way it is being run by opera enthusiasts creating a great environment for both international opera companies as well as the national great artists with a packed schedule every season. Make sure to not miss this design masterpiece when you are in Tianjin!

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HANGZHOU

Hangzhou Opera House

Hangzhou Grand Theatre

This stunning opera house, located near the Qiantang River in central Hangzhou might be one of the most beautiful buildings in the world. In Hangzhou culture, opera has always been an important art form and you can understand that when you gaze upon the Hangzhou Grand Theatre. This opera house is built with equal parts of love and engineering excellence with state of the art stage technology. If you are the kind of person who hates it when cellphones start ringing during shows (who isn't?) you will probably be pleased to know that the Hangzhou Grand Theatre has installed a shield technology of electronic communication, making sure to keep the performances disruption free. The opera house is constantly attracting international talents such as the Berlin Orchestra Symphony but also national prides such as the National Ballet of China and the Hangzhou Shaoxing Opera Troupe. Make sure to not miss it when you are in Hangzhou!

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WICHITA

Wichita Concert Hall

Century II Performing Arts & Convention Center

While this technically isn't an opera house, is is the largest center for entertainment in Wichita, Kansas and home to the Wichita Grand Opera. It hosts three other major art organizations including the Wichita Symphony Orchestra, the Music Theatre of Wichita and the Music Theatre for Young People. This sprawling multi-venue complex is the perfect place to visit no matter what your entertainment needs include. Make sure to check out their schedule and plan your stay in Wichita with that in mind!

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HOUSTON

Houston Opera House

Wortham Theater Center

The Wortham Theater Center is the home of the Houston Grand Opera which is the main opera company in Houston. The theater also features other performing arts shows in two different auditoriums: The Brown Theater and The Cullen Theater. The largest of the two is the Brown Theater, which is primarily used for opera and large ballet productions. The buildings most prominent feature is the gigantic glass entrance which adds to the elegant aura of the venue. Located near the Buffalo Bayou river and Sesquicentennial Park, it is also a great place for an afternoon stroll.

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DALLAS

Dallas Opera House

Margot and Bill Winspear Opera House

This red cylinder shaped opera house, designed by American architect Spencer de Grey, has one of the most beautiful interior design details for the more visually appreciative opera goer. The illuminating 318-rod chandelier located below the ceiling is actually not only a design detail, it can also be incorporated into the performances. Every rod in the chandelier is connected in an LED light system and can be remotely controlled by the on site engineers. This means that the chandelier can be used as a mood setter during the shows, changing colors depending on what is happening on the stage. This is probably better seen in person than described in text, so make sure to not miss it while you are there!

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DENVER

Denver Opera House

Ellie Caulkins Opera House

Located in the cultural center of Denver, the Ellie Caulkins Opera House has been the home of opera in Denver since its inauguration in 2005. While the exterior of the building doesn't look like much, the old saying "it is what's on the inside that matters" rings true in this scenario. Inside you will find one of the most beautiful auditoriums in the world. Be sure to not miss it when you are visiting Denver!

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LJUBLJANA

Ljubljana Opera House

Slovenian National Opera and Ballet Theatre

Near the great Park Tivoli, the Slovenian National Opera and Ballet Theatre sits head to head with the Slovenian Parliament building, the National Museum and the National Gallery. In other words, this is quite the cultural district where tourists from all over the world gather to experience Slovenian history. The main performing arts are opera and ballet and the complete schedule is available on the opera's website.

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SAN FRANCISCO

San Francisco Opera House

The War Memorial Opera House

Part of the San Francisco War Memorial and Performing Arts Center, the San Francisco Opera has been performing here since opening night in 1932. Built to commemorate those who lost their lives during first World War, this opera house follows the trend of American opera houses seating more people than its European counter-pieces with its massive auditorium where over 3000 opera enthusiasts can gather to enjoy the the most wonderful pieces of opera that San Francisco has to offer.

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HAVANA (HABANA)

Havana Opera House

Gran Teatro de La Habana

Gran Teatro de La Habana is located on Paseo del Prado on the corner of the Explanada del Capitolio park where the iconic National Capitol Building can be seen. The Gran Teatro de La Habana was founded in 1838 but the first performance that took place here was actually in the year before dedicated to certain exclusive guests. Today all kinds of performance arts can be enjoyed here depending on the seasons, for example operas, zarzuelas, concerts, ballet and festivals. Apart from that you can also partake in practical courses in a couple of traditional dances. Take a look at their website to see what's going on when you're there and be part of the local cultural flora!

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CARACAS

Caracas Opera House

Teatro Teresa Carreño

The Teatro Teresa Carreño is the second largest theatre in South America and the most important one in Caracas and Venezuela. The venue offers performances including opera, ballet, theatre plays and concerts, and it is named after the Venezuelan pianist Teresa Carreño. Located in the Bellas Artes cultural district of the city, the Teatro Teresa Carreño is a great place to visit during your stay, with many activities organized during the year such as yoga classes and a charming surrounding tropical park!

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HANOI AND HALONG BAY

Hanoi Opera House

The Hanoi Opera House

Designed by architect Broyer Harley and Francois Lagisquet during the time of French colonization in Vietnam, this Neo-classical opera house was founded in December 1911. At the time, the performances were exclusively done by French artists for a French audience. After the French left Vietnam, the locals could assume control over the building and make it into their own venue for performance arts. Today this Vietnamese opera house see contributions from local talents as well as European classical works.

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BERGEN

Bergen Opera House

Grieg Hall

The Grieg Hall is the venue where the Bergen National Opera is based since 1978. In addition, this seat concert hall hosted the Eurovision Song Contest in 1986 and it is famous among the black metal community as a recording studio! In addition to the season’s performances, the Bergen National Opera offers a dinner deal together with evening operas. Check what’s on and plan your visit!

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CHICAGO

Chicago Opera House

Civic Opera House, Chicago

Built in 1929, the beautiful Civic Opera House is one of Chicago’s historic landmarks. The building, designed as a mixture of Art Nouveau and Art Deco, was fully restored in 1996 and it is the second-largest opera venue in North America. The Civic Opera House has been used as a venue for modern music artists, opera, musicals and theatre pieces. In addition, there are two restaurants and four private dining rooms that can be rented for public and private events. Look at what they have to offer during your visit!

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MEXICO CITY

Mexico City Opera House

Palacio de Bellas Artes, Mexico City

The Palacio de Bellas Artes, located in the historic centre of Mexico City, is the most important cultural centre of the whole country of Mexico. Its construction ended in 1934 after various complications, resulting in a beautiful combination of Neoclassical and Art Nouveau exterior and an Art Déco interior. As a cultural centre, the Palacio de Bellas Artes offers performances including dancing, orchestras, or operas among others, while also containing the museums of architecture and fine arts and several temporary exhibitions. Make sure you check their programme before you visit!

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TORONTO

Toronto Opera House

Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts

The Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts venue is the home of the Canadian Opera Company (COC) and the National Ballet of Canada. The modernist design of the building was developed by the Canadian company Diamond and Schmitt Architects, the team who won the competition to design the new home of the COC. Their website is full of useful information if you plan on visiting this venue. For instance, the Four Seasons Centre offers free concerts and special programs such as opera appreciation courses.

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ALMATY

Almaty Opera House

Abay Opera House

Named after the Kazakh poet, composer and philosopher Abay Qunanbayuli, the Abay Opera House was inaugurated in 1934. It is located near the Almaly metro station in central Almaty. Musically, the opera house is known for the opera 'Abay' by Akhmed Zhubanov and Latif Khamidi. Apart from that the Kazakh opera company residing there performs ballets and classical music. Go visit their website to see what they have in store for you while you are there!

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CLUJ-NAPOCA

Cluj-Napoca Opera House

Opera Naţională Română din Cluj-Napoca

Opera Naţională Română din Cluj-Napoca is located near Parcul Operei, which is one of the most beautiful parks in Cluj-Napoca. The opera house was designed by architects Ferdinand Fellner and Hermann Helmer in Neo-baroque style in 1906. It is home of the Romanian National Theatre and the Romanian Opera. The Romanian Opera gained a lot of attention for their acclaimed tours in Europe and today you can enjoy their performances when they are in season. Make sure to check out their website while you are there to see who is performing!

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