Romeo and Juliet…in Aspendos


  The Aspendos Opera Festival

Do you crave opera?  I don’t.  I really have to be in the right mind for it.  I don’t hate it, but I certainly don’t love it.  However, I’ve been to a number of operas over the course of my life, and I have to tell you, one thing about opera -no matter which one- it is always memorable.  My last foray into the arena of what I would always call a “truly cultural” activity, was in Aspendos, in a renovated Roman theatre built originally about 2 A.D.

The Aspendos Opera Festival is held in late June every year, and hosts opera companies from all over Turkey as well as a few international ones.  This year we had the choice of about six different operas, including Carmen and Tosca.  We chose Romeo and Juliet, because we thought that overall it’s the story we knew the best so that would make it that much more interesting.

We arrived about 8:30, an hour before it started, to try and get some decent seats.  We couldn’t believe how many people were already there.  We were in the beginning of the nose-bleeders, but at least the stage was straight ahead.  Before the show actually began, our tail-ends were numb, but we persevered and were very excited when the cast came out clad in red plastic ball gowns.

We watched, we wiggled, and we decided to leave about half way through, but we did enjoy it.  If you happen to be on the Meditteranean coast in late June, try to go.  It was an experience.

You can buy tickets as apackaged tour from tour companies or touts in Side (at the museum), but if you have your own transportation, it’s just better to go to the site and buy them there.  You save all the extra costs, to include transportation.

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