The Metropolitan Opera Guild

Puccini & Rossini in Italy

2010-08-04 - 2010-08-14

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Verdi, Rossini and Puccini form the Holy Trinity of Italian opera. The former maestro has his fête in Parma each October; the summer festivals devoted to the latter pair are largely outdoor affairs, on opposite coasts in northern Italy, each offering distinctive experiences in lovely settings. Torre del Lago, site of Giacomo Puccini’s villa and final resting place, is located in western Tuscany, little more than a mile from the Tyrrhenian Sea. The venue for the festival is Teatro dei Quattromila (”Theatre of the Four Thousand”, though it has only 3200 seats), a state-of-the-art open-air theater located on the shores of Puccini’s beloved Lake Massaciuccoli. Hearing Puccini’s timeless melodies float across the lake at sunset, just a few steps from the maestro’s final resting place, makes for a truly moving experience.

For this part of the tour, we stay in Lucca, one of the most charming cities in Italy, with some of the finest cuisine in all of Tuscany. This medieval walled city has countless treasures, among which are the many sites associated with Puccini, who was born here in 1858.

Between festivals we stay in Florence, a dense maze of artistic treasures and countless famous landmarks: Brunelleschi’s Dome, the Baptistery and Campanile, Ponte Vecchio, the Pitti Palace, the Uffizi and Accademia, not to mention the many churches which are themselves both essential galleries and works of art. We spend just enough time in this miraculous city to sample the very best it has to offer.

Pesaro is a Roman town on the Adriatic Coast in the Marche region, due east of Florence. The town is the birthplace of Gioacchino Rossini, and in August of each year, The Rossini Opera Festival is held in his honor. Performances are given in the 850-seat theater built in 1818, the Teatro Rossini and, since 1988, the modified "Palasport" sports arena (or Adriatic Arena), an open-air theater with 1,500 seats.

For this trip, as for all of our itineraries, we use charming and elegant hotels in each city, located in the historic centers, close to venues and major sights. Our guides are the very best in each location, and are particularly knowledgeable about the composers and their music, as well as, of course, the history and art of their respective regions. Transfers between cities are by luxury coach, and the tour schedule will be such that we avoid early mornings and full days of touring. As always, our seats are top category.

Price: $6,995


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