While my parents were visiting, we were lucky enough to get tickets to see La Clemenza di Tito at the Opera Garnier. I had gone a couple of months before to get tickets and they were nearly sold old. The Opera Garnier is an absolutely stunning building. I’m sure the Opera Bastille is lovely too, but for me, this gorgeous piece of architecture wins hands down. We got there a bit early so we would have enough time to explore and have a glass of champagne before, bien sûr.
We happened to be there on opening night with incredible orchestra seats. As it turns out I ended up sitting next to either the director or mis en scene. I’m not quite sure who he was, but everyone kept coming up to him and congratulating him during the intermission and at the end. I could see him quietly ‘conducting’ in his seat and mouthing all the words. It was quite wonderful to watch him. I hadn’t quite realized until after we were seated again just after intermission, that the empty seat in front of him was likely intentional. Slightly embarrassingly, by the time I noticed my parents had changed seats and my mom had moved to the previously empty seat in front of him, it was too late and the second Act had commenced. Luckily my mom is quite short and didn’t impede his view any! He seemed nice, and didn’t seem to mind – if he did, he certainly didn’t say anything.
It was really a magnificent production and the whole evening was wonderful. I’m not sure anything feels more magical then walking up those stunning steps to the opera and getting to see a wonderful performance there. My father, who typically sleeps through everything, stayed awake through the whole performance. That was a major achievement. I can’t wait to go back and see another opera there…and take some better photos!