Plenty of things might surprise you while waiting for your train in the vestibule of the Central Station in Prague. However, few could have expected what the State Opera prepared for the passengers. Opera stars disguised as maintenance workers in blue overalls, policemem, cleaning ladies or businessmen in suits let their voices be heard and sang several familiar arias, which gave the passers-by goosebumps. With this extraordinary performance, the State Opera wanted to draw attention to its upcoming reopening, which is due to take place on January 5, 2020.
The reconstruction of the State Opera began in March 2017. After a long and challenging renovation, the building can look forward to the reopening ceremony, which will take place on the first New Year Sunday. For this reason, the State Opera decided on an unusual performance, which took place in the vestibule of the Central Station.
Those waiting for a connection certainly brought an unforgettable experience along in the train. And no wonder! When the opera singers, disguised as "ordinary mortals" such as a skier or a traveling mum with a child, started belting out their arias, the onlookers immediately stopped in their tracks and listened in astonishment to the beautiful tones unlike anything one usually hears on the street. Many of those present didn't hesitate and immediately reached for their cell phones, so that they could record the extraordinary concert and share it with others.
In 2020, the State Opera prepared a program entitled The State Opera: Transformations in Time for its visitors. The original estimate of the reconstruction was 900 million crowns, but the price has recently risen to 1.3 billion, mainly due to the change of stage turntable technology and the reconstruction of air conditioning. The opera performers can look forward to modernized rehearsal rooms as well as renovated ballet, orchestra and choir halls. Visitors can look forward to brand new chairs with a captioning device included in the total number of 1016. The last time the State Opera underwent such complex repairs was in the 60s.