26 July-12 Aug 2007. The festival began in 1921 in the magnificent Arena Sferisterio, a huge neoclassical arena erected in the 1820s as a stadium for a form of handball called pellone. The present layout of the arena seats up to 4,500 people. By the late 1960s the festival was well known for popular 19th and early 20th century Italian opera. Now the repertory includes more modern and foreign works, but for financial reasons the emphasis is on the big crowd-pullers with as many well-known international names as possible. Since 2003, the soprano Katia Ricciarelli has been artistic director, and some rare productions have been staged. This year

General Info

Address Macerata. For booking and information tel. 0733261335, www.sferisterio.it.

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Macerata Opera.

Macerata. For booking and information tel. 0733261335, www.sferisterio.it.