Thursday, March 5, 2009

LA FENICE (The Phoenix)

Last week I watched a documentary, 'The Phoenix Rises Again', about the re-building of the famous opera house, Gran Teatro la Fenice di Venezia. It took 630 days working non-stop on the restoration and the end result was fitting for what it is, a grand opera house.

In 1996 an Italian electrician from Venice deliberately lit a fire that burnt La Fenice to the ground. He and his cousin had been hired as sub-contractors on the renovation of the opera house. As they were behind schedule, they would have faced hefty fines which would have bankrupted them.

This was the second fire to destroy the opera house since it opened in 1792. After a fire in 1836 it was rebuilt on a new site to the original plans of Tommaso and Giambattista Meduna.

When the legendary phoenix rose from the ashes again in 2003, its rebirth was celebrated with a series of concerts and partying.

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