on December 19, 2004
A very large neo-Renaissance building of Wiener Staatsoper (Vienna State Opera), with several levels of columns and arches, seems to dominate Opernring. On both sides of the building are fountains, one of which has a statue of Lorelei. Its beautiful arched entrance and an impressive lobby, with a grand staircase surrounded by statues of muses along the rail and frescoes above it on the ceiling, make you feel truly royal. On the first floor on the right is a hall with modern tapestries of Magic Flute. The large hall in front is lavishly decorated with ceiling and wall frescoes of angels and flowers. In the niches, you can see busts of composers, including the bust of Mahler by Rodin, rather lonely standing on the fireplace mantle. The stage has a plain purple velvet curtain; the ceiling is modern with a large beautiful chandelier with a myriad of lights. There is plain decor inside, with balconies decorated with gilded cereal sheaves. Every seat has a small screen with subtitles. Purple Damascus walls in loggias and plush chairs that make you feel very comfortable during the performance. I went to the performance of La Boheme. It was a very lovely performance, with nice stage decorations and very good voices, especially from the Italian tenor who performed the role of Rudolfo and a Hungarian soprano who was a real Mimi.
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