Arena, Verona

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  • Arena di Verona
    Arena di Verona
    by Twan
  • Arena di Verona
    Arena di Verona
    by Twan
  • Arena di Verona
    Arena di Verona
    by Twan
  • Nemorino's Profile Photo

    The Ala

    by Nemorino Updated Mar 22, 2014

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    1. The Ala
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    Considering that it was built nearly two thousand years ago, the Arena di Verona is remarkably well preserved -- so well preserved that it is still used for opera performances six nights a week during the summer, and for other large events during the spring and autumn. (Bruce Springsteen performed there in October 2006, for example.)

    A distinctive feature of the Arena is the Ala or wing, which is all that is left of an external decorative wall that originally surrounded the entire structure. The rest of this outer wall was destroyed by an earthquake in the year 1117.

    Second, third and fourth photos: Views of the Ala from other angles.

    Fifth photo: The Ala at night.

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  • Nemorino's Profile Photo

    Explore the Arena during the day

    by Nemorino Updated Mar 22, 2014

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    1. Entrance for daytime visits (Gate 5)
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    During the day you can go in for 4 Euros (3 if you get a discount/concession) and spend as much time as you want exploring the Arena. You aren't allowed to go into the stage or backstage areas, but you can go anywhere else.

    The entrance for daytime visits is at Gate 5, which is where these people are waiting.

    On days when an opera is scheduled, you have to leave the Arena by 16:30, but on other days you can stay until early evening.

    Second photo: Looking up at the Ala from down by the orchestra pit.

    Third photo: Looking up at sections C and D.

    Fourth photo: Looking down into the Arena.

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  • Nemorino's Profile Photo

    Building the Aida stage

    by Nemorino Updated Mar 22, 2014

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    1. Beginnings of the Aida stage set
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    If you visit the Arena on a day when Verdi's Aida is scheduled to be performed, you can watch a crew of about twenty-five men and two women building up the stage set.

    In this first photo, which I took from down by the orchestra pit, some of the golden foundation elements and three of the smaller statues are already in place.

    Second photo: Now one of the large statues has already been lifted in, and they have started to assemble the base of the big revolving pyramid which is going to be in the center of the stage.

    Third photo: Now both of the large statues and all fourteen smaller statues have already been lifted into the Arena and set down in their proper places (by the crane that is visible at the top of the picture). There are no people in this photo because the crew members are inside having their lunch break.

    Fourth photo: After lunch the stage crew comes back out and starts assembling the pyramid. To see how they do this, please have a look at my two travelogues on this Verona page.

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  • Nemorino's Profile Photo

    Statues for Aida

    by Nemorino Updated Mar 22, 2014

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    1. One of the statues for Aida
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    The stage for Zeffirelli's production of Verdi's Aida is dominated by two large statues of ancient Egyptian pharaohs* (rulers), which between performances are stored out in front of the Arena on the Piazza Bra.

    *Thanks to VT member awladhassan for pointing out that these are pharaohs, not gods, as I had originally written.

    Second photo: Piazza Bra and the Arena, with statues for the Aida stage.

    Third photo: More of the stage elements for Aida in storage on the Piazza Bra, with the Arena in the background.

    Fourth photo: Egyptian symbols on some of the stage elements for Aida.

    Fifth photo: On the day of the performance, all the statues and other large stage elements are lifted off of the Piazza Bra and into the Arena by a large crane.

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  • painterdave's Profile Photo

    Arena and Piazza Bra

    by painterdave Written Dec 9, 2013

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    Old Walls of Arena
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    This photo was taken during the December holiday season on a Saturday. It was quite a busy day as there was a Christmas Market and the weather was excellent. You can see the two walls of the arena.
    I have another tip on concerts in the arena on Virtual tourist, if you are interested in that sort of thing.

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  • Twan's Profile Photo

    Arena di Verona

    by Twan Written Oct 17, 2013

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    Arena di Verona
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    The Roman amphitheatre, the Arena, is the most renowned Veronese monument.
    Today the Arena is set in the historical centre and acts as a backdrop for Piazza Brà. But once upon a time, when the Romans built it, the monument was located at the margins of the urban area, outside the circle of the walls. The Arena summarises in itself almost twenty centuries of local history. Through time, it has become the very symbol of the city. Its cult has far away roots, that go back to Carolingian humanism. The fame that the amphitheatre has enjoyed in the civic consciousness of the Veronese has gradually led the monument to increasingly assume the character of the very symbol of ancient nobility.
    From here the measures for its conservation and many deep restorations originate. The Arena has always served the special purpose of spectacular events. During Roman times, for example, it was used for spectacles of gladiator fighting.
    In Medieval times and until the mid eighteenths century, games and tournaments were common events at the Arena.
    In 1913, the Arena was finally discovered for what it has become known for today, as the first true and most important open-air opera theatre in the world.

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  • globetrott's Profile Photo

    the outside walls of the arena

    by globetrott Updated Nov 1, 2012

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    the outside walls of the arena

    At most places you will not see the outside walls of the arena any more, as it was destroyed in an earthquake plenty of centuries ago and the inhabitants from Verona took away the stones to build and restore their own houses..
    There is only a small part of the outside-facade left and you may see it on my picture. It simply was a seperate wall with walking-arcades for the visitors.

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  • globetrott's Profile Photo

    The Arena di Verona dating back to the year 30 A.D

    by globetrott Updated Nov 1, 2012

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    The Arena di Verona dating back to the year 30 A.D

    The Arena of Verona is dating back to the year 30 A.D and it is big enough for 25.000 visitors today. The Arena was built by the Romans as a place to watch the fights of Gladiators against wild animals. In the Middleages it was partly destroyed, as people were trying to use the bricks in order to build their houses. In later times inquisition-trials were held there and people were also hanged directely after the trial there.

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  • Roadquill's Profile Photo

    Roman Arena in Verona

    by Roadquill Written Sep 5, 2012

    The Roman Arena in Verona is one of the major focal points of interest. It is not only in fantastic condition for a 2,000 year old beast, but it is still used for operas and shows. Unfortunately, when the arena is being prepared for a show, the inside is off limits to the public. The link is for performance information.

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  • draguza's Profile Photo

    ARENA

    by draguza Updated Jul 28, 2012

    The best-preserved Roman amphitheater in the world and the best known in Italy after Rome's Colosseum, the elliptical Arena was built in a slightly pinkish marble around the year A.D. 100 and stands in the very middle of town, with the Piazza Brà on its southern flank. Built to accommodate more than 20,000 people (outdone by Rome's contender that could seat more than twice that), it is in remarkable shape today (despite a 12th-century earthquake that left only four arches of the outer ring standing), beloved testimony to the pride and wealth of Verona and its populace.

    Its acoustics (astoundingly good for an open-air venue) have survived the millennia and make it one of the most fascinating venues for live performances today, conducted without microphones. If you're in town during the summer opera performances in July and August, do everything possible to procure a ticket for any of the outdoor evening performances. Even opera-challenged audience members will take home the memory of a lifetime. Other events, such as orchestral concerts, are also staged here whenever the weather permits

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  • painterdave's Profile Photo

    Now A Concert Hall

    by painterdave Written Jun 19, 2012

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    Inside View of Seating Area.

    The arena was begun to be constructed in AD 30 and the information in the guidebook says that it could hold 30,000 spectators in ancient times.
    The stone was taken from the Valpolicella area of Italy. It survived a large earthquake, but then the stone was scavanged for other structures until during the Renaissance it began to be admired and used for productions.
    It is now used for the famous Summer Opera productions and concerts brought in by the city.
    One thing I thought was interesting is the the steps up to the top are very large and without hand holding railing, when it is crowded, people are falling and tripping, etc. Maybe the old Romans had long legs??? ha
    There is a restroom inside the area, in case of emergencies, and only that, because it is sometimes not very clean. Best to go over to Piazza Bra and use one a vendor restroom.
    Seats are hard stone, but you can buy a soft seat for more cash during productions.
    You have to bring your imagination with you, as it was bigger before the earthquake.

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  • Kuznetsov_Sergey's Profile Photo

    Verona Arena

    by Kuznetsov_Sergey Written Jun 9, 2012

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    Verona Arena
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    The Verona Arena (Arena di Verona) is a Roman amphitheatre in Piazza Bra, which is one of the best preserved ancient structures of its kind.
    The building itself was built in AD 30 on a site which was then beyond the city walls. The amphitheatre could host more than 30,000 spectators in ancient times.
    The round façade of the building was originally composed of white and pink, but after a major earthquake in 1117, which almost completely destroyed the structure's outer ring, except for the so-called "ala", the stone was quarried for re-use in other buildings. Nevertheless it impressed medieval visitors to the city, one of whom considered it to have been a labyrinth, without ingress or egress.
    Opening times:
    Tue-Sun 8.30 – 19.30
    Mon 13.3—19.30

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  • Nemorino's Profile Photo

    Seating categories

    by Nemorino Updated Jun 2, 2012

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    1. Seating categories in the Arena
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    On this daytime photo you can see the various seating categories in the Arena. I have heard and read various estimates of how many tickets they put on sale for each performance, with 14,000 being the lowest estimate.

    The most expensive seats look white in the photo because they are protected during the day by heavy white plastic covers. These are the "Poltronissime" seats or first sector stalls, now subdivided into "Poltronissime GOLD" at EUR 198 per seat and normal "Poltronissime" at EUR 168. (These are the Friday and Saturday prices. On other days they cost a bit less.)

    The red seats are the "Poltrone" or 2nd sector stalls, which cost EUR 127 on Fridays and Saturdays.

    The grey seats on the lower half of the steps are the "poltroncina numerata di gradinata" or numbered seats on the steps, which cost EUR 104 in the middle sections and EUR 84 on the sides.

    These are the prices as of 2012. They have not changed since 2009.

    People over 65 or under 30 years of age are entitled to reduced price tickets, but these cannot be bought online.

    The prices for all categories are lower for Gounod's Roméo et Juliette than for the other operas.

    Second photo: Here's what these grey numbered seats on the steps look like. They aren't padded, so you might want to rent a cushion, but at least they have a back rest and they are reserved.

    Third photo: The top sections are the "Gradinata" or unreserved stone steps. On Fridays and Saturdays these cost EUR 27.50 for the middle sections D and E, EUR 23.00 for the side sections C and F. The far-forward sections B and G used to cost EUR 12.00, but they are no longer listed in the current price list.

    Fourth photo: The section under the Ala is section E.

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  • Silvanoo's Profile Photo

    Anteprima Opera, introduction to the Arena show

    by Silvanoo Written Feb 26, 2012

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    The Location
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    .... If you are visiting Verona or you are an opera enthusiast but a bit of a duffer at plots, then there's a useful pre-show lecture called Anteprima Opera, a talk by an opera expert and conductor, held in the gorgeous Church of S. Maria in Chiavica, a stone's thorw from the Arena.
    It's a great way to start the evening before the Arena Show. The talk (in italian with English translation) is geared to the opera being performed in the Arena that night.

    THE 2012 PROGRAM
    5:15 p.m.: Meeting at the S. Maria in Chiavica old Church
    5:30 p.m.: Guided listening of the Opera in program the same evening in the Arena, with Maestro at the piano and Soloist
    6:30 p.m.: End of PROGRAM
    7:00 p.m.: Typical Dinner in a good restaurant
    8:45 p.m.: Stroll towards the roman Arena
    9:15 p.m.: Start of show in the Arena

    MUSICAL CONVERSATION
    - Superior seats: € 23,00
    - Classic seats: € 19,00
    Young from 11 to 17 years old: € 10,00

    DINNER: up on € 30,00 without drinks

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  • mikelisaanna's Profile Photo

    The Roman Arena

    by mikelisaanna Written Feb 18, 2012

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    Verona has one of the largest and most well-preserved Roman arenas. It is still used for concerts and other performances throughout the summer, and thousands of modern seats have been added to the arena's original stone bleachers.

    The arena is open to tourists when performances or rehearsals aren't in progress. Be prepared to wait in line before entering. Verona gets swamped with tourists, so you amy need to wait for 30-60 minutes before getting in to the arena.

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