Teatro Dell’Opera: Rome’s Premier Opera House

| Sat, 04/26/2014 - 02:30

The Italian capital was surprisingly late in getting its first opera house: the Teatro Dell’Opera – originally named the Teatro Costanzi – was built in 1880. However, its luxurious gilt interior and impressive acoustics attracted the cream of the music world: composer Giacomo Puccini premiered ‘Tosca’ there and legendary performer Maria Callas sang there.

The theatre façade was remodelled in 1928 under the direction of Marcello Piacentini, who was charged with revamping Rome’s historical centre during Benito Mussolini’s rule. The result is an austere Fascist-era exterior designed to impress.

In contemporary times, the reputation of the once prestigious opera house began to slide. However, in 2011, the theatre reversed its ailing fortunes by employing leading Italian conductor Riccardo Muti to be its “honorary director for life”. Under Muti’s leadership, the opera house regained ground to attract the talent equal to the splendour of its red and gilt interior, and audiences keen to appreciate it.

Teatro Dell’Opera is home to Rome's Corps de Ballet and a ballet season running in tandem with the opera season. The theatre also houses a school for young musicians and dancers, ensuring its place as a vibrant centre of the arts in the capital. In the summer, productions are held outdoors at the ruins of the Roman baths at Terme di Carcalla.

Where: Teatro dell’Opera di Roma, 7 Piazza Beniamino Gigli, 00187 Rome

Website: http://www.operaroma.it/