Archive for July, 2014

July 9, 2014

Summer opera in Verona’s Amphitheatre

verona areaverona area2The Verona Arena in Piazza Bra in the historic center of Verona is internationally famous for it’s large-scale opera performances.  It is one of the best preserved ancient structures of its kind.  The Roman amphitheatre dates to AD 30 and could host 30,000 spectators to view staged games and shows in ancient times.

The round façade of the building was originally composed of white and pink limestone from Valpolicella, 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. The first interventions to recover the arena’s function as a theatre began during the Renaissance.  Some operatic performances were later mounted in the building during the 1850s, owing to its outstanding acoustics. Nowadays, at least four productions (sometimes up to six) are mounted each year between June and August. In recent times, the arena has also hosted several concerts of international rock and pop bands

The opera productions in the Verona Arena had not used any microphones or loudspeakers until an electronic sound reinforcement system was installed in 2011 – imagine that !



July 3, 2014

Parisienne Milan

Milan takes one more fashion-forward step towards ultimate ‘chicdom’ as plans are announced to bring the iconic Parisian department store Galeries Lafayette to the Lombard capital. galeries lafayette2galeries lafayette3

For France’s Galeries Lafayette, this will only be its second non-domestic venture in Europe, despite its global success with 65 outlets in more than 100 years of business: 60 in France, plus stores in Berlin, Casablanca, Dubai, Jakarta and Beijing. While, for Westfield, the Milan mall will mark the group’s first opening in mainland Europe.

The new flagship store will be the largest in Europe, covering 18,000 square metres and four floors. Westfield Milan will be the new shopping centre’s name, situated at Segrate, not far from Milan Linate airport. More than 300 luxury and more ‘accessible’ labels will set up shop in the new mall, as well as cinemas, additional leisure activities and food outlets.




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