36 Years Ago

36 Years Ago, Vienna 1971—A Student Journal

Day 052: Standing room only, La Bohème


Vienna 1971—A Student Journal
A year of music, study, travel, sightseeing & friends.

Day 52 — Standing room only, La Bohème
23-September-1971 (Thur.)

Vienna Staatsoper at night


Busy day—too busy, except with music.

Went to the opera again (becoming a fanatic)—standing room, and saw
“La Bohème.” It was a beautiful performance—singing, music, scenery—our standing [room] place was excellent. This has been the most enjoyable opera so far—it’s because of all the beautiful arias and themes, which add so much emotion to the typical (man-woman-falling-in-love) theme. Really good.


La Bohème. If you’re only going to see one opera in your life, make it La Bohème by Giacomo Puccini. The opera is in Italian and was first performed in 1896. A love story, the opera's memorable arias and melodies, famous crowd scene, and tragic ending captures the hearts of all who attend. It is a great opera. You will enjoy it.

Standing room only. My second experience with standing room. Standing room allowed me to see many operas in Vienna—it is unbelievable experience (for the young at heart, and students) at an incredible price of 10s, or about $1. This price enabled us students to be able to afford to see operas regularly.

Standing room required going early to wait in line and then scramble up the stairs to the “heavens of the opera house” (err, way up there), and then standing/sitting at specified locations of the top two tiers of the opera house. It's a unique and fun experience (when young).

Good friend, Mike. Although I don’t write about it a lot in the journal, one of my good friends in Vienna was an organ student named Mike. From what I remember, Mike was the main organizer of telling us students what concerts were up and coming, and he was the one who introduced us to standing room at the Vienna Staatsoper. I wish I could have had a video of the experience. I wonder how many “less” concerts I would have seen if Mike wasn’t one of my friends. Thanks Mike.

I wonder what standing room is like today.

Great way to end the day.


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