Outdoor Opera in Rome

Opera buffs know that the best performances and most exquisite surroundings for opera are to be found at Milan's Scala, Venice's newly reconstructed Fenice, and at Verona's Arena (outdoor amphitheater). But Rome is Italy's capital, and so, even though its opera company does not have the renown of the aforementioned landmarks, it does have a healthy following. Rome's spring opera season runs from November or December to May. During the summertime exodus of many of the city's pubs, restaurants, and discos to outdoor venues, opera, too, heads outside for its summer season. Rome's many opera companies commandeer church courtyards, ancient villas, and soccer campi (fields) with performances that range from mom-and-poperas to full-scale, big-budget extravaganzas. Quality is generally quite high, even for smaller, low-budget productions. Tickets cost €15–€40. To find these productions, listen closely or look for the old-fashioned posters advertising classic operas like Tosca and La Traviata. The weekly Roma c'è, the monthly Wanted in Rome, and the website www.inromenow.com also have complete lists of performances.

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