A journey among the places of Puccini’s Tosca
HIGHLIGHTS DEL TOUR:
- Visit to the places of Tosca: A walk trough the places in which the Opera takes place
- S. Andrea della Valle: Visit of the magnificient 16th century Basilica
- Teatro dell’Opera: Guided tour inside the historical Teatro dell’Opera di Roma
- Tosca at Teatro dell'Opera: Opera with Saioa Hernandez and Vittorio Grigolo
(Wedn. 2, Thu. 3, Fri. 4 November 2022 - 8.00 pm Sat. 5 November 2022 - 6.00 pm)
DISCOVER ROME THROUGH TOSCA'S EYES
Tosca by Puccini, is one of the greatest and most known works of the Italian Opera tradition. It’s a story of love and death taking place in the 19th century Rome: after the unfortunate adventure of the Roman Republic, the Papal State requires its restoration. We are going to visit the places in which Puccini set the Opera, one location for each act, tragic scenarios of jealousy, love, power and great ideals.
Day 1 – arrival in Rome
Arrival in Rome by own means. Accomodation in 4* Hotel. Rooms available in the afternoon.
8.00 pm: Welcome dinner. Overnight in hotel.
Day 2 – Roma
Breakfast at the hotel. Meeting with the guide for a first walking tour of Tosca's places. The drama revolves around the three main characters, Tosca, Cavaradossi and Scarpia. Three acts of the opera, three as the places in which it is set. The first act has as its background the Basilica of Sant’Andrea della Valle, and it is from here that we will begin our visit. The church takes its name from the Palazzo della Valle, which stands nearby. The construction started at the end of the 16th century involving the architects Della Porta, Grimaldi and Maderno, but the Gothic facade was added later, in the second half of 1600. Inside we find the Cappella Barberini, one of the three chapels in the basilica, to which it seems that Puccini has been inspired by. Lunch in a selected restaurant with traditional Roman cuisine.
We continue walking through the alleys of Rome to reach Piazza Farnese and then the Palazzo Farnese where the second act of the opera takes place. Guided visit inside the historic building (to be confirmed). One of the most beautiful buildings of the 16th century Rome. It was started in 1517, designed by Antonio da Sangallo and commissioned by the Cardinal Alessandro Farnese, the future Pope Paolo III. After the death of Sangallo, work continued supervised first by Michelangelo, followed by Vignola (back facade) and then by Giacomo Della Porta. The palace was finished in 1589. Property of the Italian State, its use is granted to France since 1936 and it’s still today the home of the French Embassy.
Retrun to the hotel and free dinner.
Note about Palazzo Farnese.. As the Home of the French Embassy, an authorization to organize a guided visit is required: for visits in November 2022 the confirmation of the permission is going to be released not before July 2022.
Day 3 – Rome
Breakfast at the hotel. Meeting with the guide and visit of Castel San’Angelo (third act). Built as a sepulcher wanted by the emperor Hadrian in a peripheral area of ancient Rome, it fulfills this original function up to 403 AD . Throughout history its function changed many times: starting from the fifth century it was a fortress beyond the Tiber in defense of Rome, from the first mid-10th century it was used as a prison, a function it kept until 1901. Towards the end of 13th century Pope Nicholas III decided to transfer part of its apostolic see there, considering it a very safe structure. In the following centuries the papal rooms were built inside, while it was equipped on the outside with further fortifications, especially under the papacy of Alexander VI, so much so that, in 1527, the castle withstood the sack of Rome by the Landsknechts . In the 19th century it was used as a political prison, but from the early 20th century it became a museum, a function it still retains today.
Free lunch and afternoon. Free dinner.
Round trip transfer by bus to Teatro dell’Opera di Roma
TEATRO DELL’OPERA DI ROMA - TOSCA opera in three acts by Giacomo Puccini, libretto by Giuseppe Giacosa and Luigi Illica
NOTE - it is possible to attend the Opera on a differnet day on request (available dates on the first page of the programme)
Day 4 – Rome and departure
Breakfast at the hotel Check-out and transfer via Metro to visit Teatro dell’Opera. During the visit the architectural and artistic history will be illustrated in detail together with the great names of music and politic related to the theater. The path touches the main areas: entrance foyer, stalls, royal box, stage mechanisms, gallery, frescoes of the vault, museum.
At the end, return to the hotel and departure by own means
End of services
The visits order may change for operational needs or in relation to any government restrictions due to COVID19
OPTIONAL GUIDED VISITS (FOR THOSE WHO WANT TO EXTEND THE STAY)
Baroque Roma and Caravaggio (half day)
The starting point is Piazza Colonna, which owes its name to the Antonine Column, and from there we move to Piazza Montecitorio, where the homonymous Baroque building is now the seat of the Italian Parliament; proceeding on foot through the alleys of the center we will skirt the building where Caravaggio lived in his Roman period arriving to the Church of Sant’Agostino to admire one of the artist's masterpieces: La Madonna del Pellegrino. We continue towards the Church of San Luigi dei Francesi, a real triumph of Baroque art. Inside the church we find the Contarelli Chapel where we will admire the splendid Triptych of the Conversion of St. Matthew (Vocazione di san Matteo, Martirio di San Matteo, San Matteo e l'Angelo), commissioned to Caravaggio by Cardinal Mathieu Cointrel, then italianized in Contarelli. We will end in Piazza Navona, a true compendium of Roman Baroque, dominated by the Fontana dei Quattro Fiumi created by Gian Lorenzo Bernini for Pope Innocenzo X Pamphilji.
The Aventine Hill and its churches: chiese Santa Sabina, San Bonifacio e Alessia e Santa Prisca (half day)
Among the seven hills, the Aventine is the most detached, from a popular hill it became an elite area of ancient Rome. During the guided tour we will discover that due to its secluded location from the Forum, the center of the city, where the great temples stood, buildings of worship of minor religions, including Mithraism and Christianity, spread here. It was in the Middle Ages that the Aventine area became the home for many monastic communities and for their churches characterized by austere forms that can still be admired as places where time seems to have stopped. We will visit the interiors of the early Christian Basilica of Santa Sabina, the church of Santi Bonifacio e Alessia and the church of Santa Prisca and its mithraeum. During the visit, an art historic will deepen their relationship with the urban fabric, their history and the works they contain.
Terme di Caracalla (half day)
The most impressive and best preserved public thermal building in Rome was built by the Emperor Caracalla between 212 and 217 AD, a chronology confirmed by dating of the numerous brick stamps found in the structures. In 212 A.D. a branch of the Acqua Marcia aqueduct, the Aqua Antoniniana, was opened with the specific purpose of feeding the new thermal complex. It crossed the Via Appia on the so-called "Arco di Druso". Caracalla completed the central body of the actual baths, while the last two emperors of the Severi dynasty, Elagabalo and Severo Alessandro, built the external circuit with the exedras and the classrooms of the libraries. After the restorations carried out by Aureliano, Diocleziano and Theodorico, the Baths of Caracalla were abandoned starting from 537, due to the interruption of the aqueducts of Rome caused by the Goths of Vitige. Between 1901 and 1912 new excavations were carried out, and in the research campaign of 1938 the largest Mithraeum in Rome was identified in the basement of the baths.
**The Aventine Hill and Terme di Caracalla tours might be combined in one day (morning plus afternoon) including a typical lunch in a Trattoria at Testaccio
San Giovanni in Laterano and Battistero lateranense (half day)
Laterano was the residence of the Popes until 1305, when they moved from Rome to Avignon. The ancient palace of residence, the Patriarchìo, was demolished in 1586 by Domenico Fontana at Sixtus V request, to give space to the present Lateran Palace. The Basilica of San Giovanni in Laterano, the Rome Cathedra, is the mother of all the churches of Rome and of the world. Founded by Constantine between 313 and 318 with the title of Basilica Sanctissimi Salvatoris, secondarily dedicated to Saints John the Baptist and John the Evangelist, it was destroyed and rebuilt several times: the current Basilica dates back to the 17th century. The imposing travertine facade was built in 1735 by Alessandro Galilei, who won the contractor following a public competition. Entering in the chuch porch, you can see a statue of Constantine coming from his thermal baths on the Quirinale, and the bronze doors removed by the Curia Senatus in the Forum at Alexander VII (1655-1667) request. In the right corner of Piazza San Giovanni in Laterano there is the Battistero, built by Constantine where, according to a consolidated but not historically reliable tradition, he was baptized by San Silvestro. It is an octagonal brick building with eight columns supporting the entablature and another eight in marble supporting the dome. The exterior, in brick, is adorned with a frieze designed by Francesco Borromini (1657) and shows the trace of some openings closed in different periods.
Church of Santa Cecilia in Trastevere (Patroness of musicians)
The complex was built on the paleochristian place of worship linked to the presence of the martyr's domus. The masterpieces of the church are the ciborium by Arnolfo di Cambio, the famous statue of Santa Cecilia by Stefano Maderno, the fresco of the Last Judgment by Pietro Cavallini, the mosaic of the apse of the 9th century. In the basement of the church there is the archaeological area, consisting in Roman constructions from the Republican Age to the late Empire, including a thermal plant. The visit ends with a walk in the Trastevere district, the heart of Rome, where it’s still possible to grasp the popular soul of the city, admirably told by the poets Belli and Trilussa. Today the district is among the most charming and distinctive of the Eternal City, heart of its nightlife and enogastronomy, an open-air theatre with its wonderful squares (piazza Trilussa, piazza Santa Maria in Trastevere, piazza San Cosimato), churches and historic alleys, an ancient and contemporary emblem of Roman times.