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“Just Amazing”
Review of Teatro Olimpico

Teatro Olimpico
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The Palladio and Bassano del Grappa Private Tour
Ranked #1 of 141 things to do in Vicenza
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: <1 hour
Owner description: Andrea Palladio’s last work and masterpiece, the Olympic Theatre was commissioned in February 1580 by the Accademia Olimpica, a society of mixed social classes founded in Vicenza in 1555 for cultural and scientific purposes and to which Palladio himself belonged. Construction began in May 1580, but Palladio died suddenly on 19 August of that year so did not see its completion. After various, complex delays, the theatre was completed five years later and opened on 3 March 1585 with the memorable staging of Sophocles’ Oedipus Tyrannus. The theatre is reached by way of the odeon and anti-odeon, two large rooms designed by Vincenzo Scamozzi and decorated respectively with frescoes by Francesco Maffei portraying divinities and allegorical figures (c. 1637) and a monochrome frieze of considerable documentary interest (c. 1595). This depicts theatrical productions presented by the Accademia before construction of the Olimpic Theatre (Amor costante, Sophonisba) and shows or events held in the new theatre (Oedipus the King, the diplomatic mission of Japanese envoys). Palladio designed a monumental scenae frons within an enclosed space intended to simulate classical theatres in the open air. It is flanked by two wings or stage doors and a semi-elliptical cavea with thirteen tiers, ending in a columned exedra at the top, partly open and partly with niches in the wall. Statues of the academicians who commissioned the theatre, dressed in classical costume, occupy the niches and plinths of the structure. A series of splendid bas reliefs showing stories of Hercules by Ruggero Bascape occupies the highest row. Wooden perspective scenery of the streets of Thebes runs back from the three openings in the scenea frons. This was designed by Scamozzi for the opening performance of Oedipus Tyrannus and has remained as a permanent feature
California, USA
Level 6 Contributor
92 reviews
41 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 39 helpful votes
“Just Amazing”
Reviewed October 14, 2013

This is the most amazing sight to see. I just couldn't believe the trompe L'oeil. Wish we could have seen a play there! Even the entrance hall has several interesting things to see. Once in the theatre one can wander around the seating area and spend as much time as you'd like. It really was hard knowing where to look as the sky detail, the statues and the trompe L'oeil stage are all so detailed.

Visited September 2013
1 Thank whitewingsUsa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Cedar Park, Texas
Level 4 Contributor
36 reviews
11 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
“Historical Theater”
Reviewed October 14, 2013

It doesn't get more interesting for theater buffs than the Teatro. Amazing history, through finding out additional information was a little difficult. The staff in the theater were there mostly to ensure that visitors didn't stray into prohibited area (quite understandable, when you have a structure hundreds of years old). But, it was well worth it just to sit in the theater and look at all the decor and backdrop (amazing perspective on the backdrop). Some of the old lighting devices displayed in the gift shop area were interesting---I would have like more of this type of displays. Well worth the stop.

Visited May 2013
1 Thank TraveledFarAndWide
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Austin, Texas
Level 6 Contributor
485 reviews
122 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 171 helpful votes
“Impressive, but could use some improved English language services”
Reviewed October 5, 2013

The theater is impressive and well worth the visit. The only complaint is that the staff have limited English skills, so some of the depth and context was missing for us. I think they could do a better job of informing English customers that they either need the audio guide or wait for an English tour (none available when we visited).

Visited October 2013
Thank rustycat83
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nashville, Tennessee
Level 4 Contributor
27 reviews
12 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
“Nice to Return!! 20 years later...”
Reviewed September 25, 2013

We came back to the Theater to revisit the place where two of our kids graduations were held. Brought back many special memories for us.
We were stationed here in Vicenza in the 90's. Lots has changed but not the Teatro!!
Well worth the visit!

Visited September 2013
Thank Kathiewebb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 6 Contributor
84 reviews
25 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 49 helpful votes
“The first origina covered theater in the history of the world.”
Reviewed September 12, 2013 via mobile

If you are walking in the small pretty Vicenza, looking for the main sights, you can't miss this place.You will not see anything similar in another place.10 euro ( 3 sights of the city included ) and some more information at the info-point nearby the gate will give you a good interesting basic information to understand this amazing Palladio project.

Visited May 2013
Thank Federicoangelo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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