Post Three: A Night at the Opera (the album by Queen)

The Opera Garnier is a very interesting site in part because it is a very ineffective venue for performance. While it may seem odd that an opera house would be designed to be ineffective as an opera house, it does make sense when you learn that the primary purpose of the Opera Garnier was not to watch a performance, but rather the tried and true past time of watching people and judging them for their grievous mistakes and life choices. The theater is designed in a horseshoe shape to optimize people watching and gossip with the side effect of making the stage nearly invisible to many box seat viewers.

The opera was constructed under the urban renewal of Paris under the rule of Napoleon III and Baron Haussmann. The opera was designed by Charles Garnier with the intent of being an architectural style unique to the Napoleonic era. It was constructed on the destroyed remains of a community on a hill; the hill was flattened and the opera was built on top of it. Since there was a hill that was destroyed, the water table of the area was unusually high, so the opera was designed to have a large cistern underneath to reduce the risk of flooding and collapse.

I drew the inside of the Opera Garnier’s theater since the exterior was under maintenance.

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