Italian Opera Houses

Italy's historic theaters are the perfect expression of the country's centuries-old love affair with the performing arts. Italian opera has continued to play a dominant role in the history of the form until the present day. Opera fans should try to visit at least one opera house and enjoy a live performance in Italy. The opera season is generally October through March or April but outdoor performances are held in the summer in unique settings.
Our picks:
Teatro alla Scala in Milan.  The opera house is associated with the world's best Opera, Classical Music and Ballet companies. The Scala's Theater Museum houses a fascinating collection of antique instruments and an impressive library containing over 120.000 books.

Teatro Regio in Parma is definately one of the city's most important institutions. Today, the theater is considered the home of Italian melodrama . Every October, since 2004, the theater hosts the much-acclaimed Verdi Festival.

Teatro La Fenice in Venice is one of the most famous theaters in Europe.

The oldest working theater in Europe is Naples' Teatro San Carlo that has for years been involved in an important restoration of Naples' 18th century comic opera, "opera buffa.

Reopened on October 4th 2009, Bari's Teatro Petruzzelli is considered a symbol of the greatness of Southern Italy. The recent restoration was inspired by the same spirit.

Summer Music and Dance festivals
Some of Italy's leading musical and dance festivals are listed below (note that dates are subject to change):
> Opera season in Verona, July-September
> Spoleto Festival dei Due Mondi in the charming Umbrian hilltown Spoleto, June/July
> Puccini Festival at Torre del Lago, near Lucca, July-August
> Rossini Opera Festival in seaside Pesaro, August

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