Our Night at the Opera.
Fair warning: it’s time to gush.
Also fair warning, it’s not that quiet, hush-hush under one’s breath gushing. To the contrary, it’s “Scream at the top of your lungs with 14 exclamation points” gushing.
For, you see, while in Paris, Hal and spent an evening at the storied and incredible Palais Garnier. Aside from being the setting for every Phantom of the Opera fable known to modern history, this stunning edifice was home to the Paris Opera and has survived a couple of revolutions and wars, not to mention a few bad movies and (in our case) one very, very modern dance performance.
To be honest, there is no way these photos can do the place justice. To call it stunning is really an understatement. As I tend to “feel” history at times, standing in the lobbies and grand halls was transformative. The history of the space reaches out and touches your soul. If it doesn’t, I’m pretty much convinced you have no soul. But that’s just my own personal opinion.
As this building sat on my personal life bucket list, I was simultaneously in awe and overwhelmed walking up the steps. Truth be told, even that became a bit of a challenge after entering as ones eye immediately goes upward to the ceilings. How can it not?
From there it was up sweeping stairs, through gilded halls and into our small box seats looking down onto the stage. Can we mention the box seat? Less a box and more a small chamber, my mind immediately started wondering about the lives lived inside this space prior. For more than one moment, we were less visitors to a modern dance performance and more tuxedo clad men surrounded by sweeping gowns and valets. It was all so easy to slide back into history; so completely easy.
Until one looks up at the glorious Chagall painted ceiling. At that point, I was reminded that this building has been around longer than any I know and will hopefully stay its own course.
Now, this is where I must be honest and say the performance wasn’t as stunning (for us) as the building. Indeed, not such fans of modern dance are we. But the experience itself was worth every penny and moment.
And that, my friends, is really what life is all about. Oui?