With the birth of opera in the late 16th century came a demand for structures big enough and luxurious enough to hold lavish productions that combined music and theater.
Photo: Gabriel Varaljay
Many opera houses built since then have disappeared. Still, some have stood the test of time and have become historical structures recognized worldwide for their stunning architectural design.
Photo: Laila Gebhard
While the Sydney Opera House may be the world’s most recognizable opera house, others are equally as impressive. Enjoy this list of eight incredible opera houses around the globe.
Photo: Louis Paulin
The massive structure is large enough that seven A380 airplanes could sit onsite wing-to-wing. More than one million Swedish-made tiles cover the roof.
Photo: Ian Lee
Although commonly referred to as La Scala, the full name of this Milan, Italy, opera house is The Teatro alla Scalla. It is one of the most famous opera houses in the world.
Photo: Martin Anselmo
The current Metropolitan Opera House resides in Manhattan at Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, along with the New York Philharmonic, the New York City Ballet, and the Juilliard School. It has a capacity of 3,995 people.
Photo: Mateusz Majewski
London’s Royal Opera House is one of the city’s most iconic and recognizable buildings. Referred to by locals as simply “Covent Garden,” it’s home to both the Royal Opera and the Royal Ballet.
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Located in Naples, Italy, it holds the title of the world’s oldest working opera house. Built in 1737 by The Bourbon King Charles, the majestic building has stood the test of time despite suffering significant damage.
Photo: Kristina Volgenau
Photo: Kazuo Ota