The Province of Parma is rich in opera and music thanks to Composer Giuseppe Verdi who was born in Busseto in 1813 and Musician and Orchestra Director Arturo Toscanini who was born in Parma in 1867. Teatro Regio di Parma is a famous 19th century opera house and opera company in Parma, Italy.
The construction was begun in 1821 by Marie Louise, Duchess of Parma on the location of the former Monastery of St. Alexander. The design was by Nicola Bettoli. It was inaugurated in 1829 with Vincenzo Bellini’s Zaira.
Since 2004 Parma has mounted an annual “Festival Verdi” each October with the aim of presenting every Verdi opera by the bi-centennial year of the composer’s birth. The Festival includes associated discussions and musical productions throughout the city. Verdi is famous for operas such as Rigoletto, Il Trovatore, La Traviata, Otello and Falstaff among others.
Festival Verdi kick starts the official season, which runs from mid-December to mid-April. The Parmigiani are considered the most knowledgeable and demanding audience in Italy and a performance here is every bit as memorable as a night at La Scala or the Met.