About in Parma

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About in Parma

Post by JulianaAlice on Thu Jan 09, 2014 5:44 pm

We will be stepping off the plane next week in Parma instead of our usual Pisa as summer flights do not resume until April.  We have visited Parma a couple of times before by train, but found that we arrived as most places of interest were closing for lunch, and they reopened when we were thinking of catching the train back!

We are hiring a car at the Airport and this gives us a bit of time flexibility before we head off on the Autocamionale della Cisa towards our place in Lunigiana.  In the few hours available to us I fancy a look at Parma's Farnese Theatre:

Teatro Farnese is a Baroque-style theatre in Parma, Italy. It was built in 1618 by Giovanni Battista Aleotti. The theatre was almost destroyed by an Allied air raid during World War II (1944). It was rebuilt and reopened in 1962.  Some claim this as the first permanent proscenium theatre (that is, a theatre in which the audience views the action through a single frame, which is known as the "proscenium arch").

The theatre, apparently, was built entirely out of wood and plaster and the painted so it seemed to be made of expensive marbles. The theatre was almost completely destroyed by bombing but they were careful to rebuild using the origin design, and sections that were restructured were left bare so as to highlight the extent of the damage.

I think it sounds fascinating, and also Parma’s national gallery is accessed through the theatre, or so I have read. 

I hope we can find somewhere secure to leave the car with our suitcases in the boot whilst we take a first look-see.

Often we go searching out new places the minute we get off the plane and we find ourselves trying to turn on the electricity and gas in our apartment around midnight!

I cannot resist the chance to see something new.  I have no patience at all to wait for a more appropriate time!
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Re: About in Parma

Post by JulianaAlice on Thu Jan 09, 2014 6:11 pm

Apparently, Charles Dickens wrote about this theatre in his travelogue Pictures from Italy.  He and others over time expressed dismay at the state this theatre was in as due to the complicated nature and the extremely high expenses needed to put on a show in the theatre, it was only used nine times from its inauguration, mostly for ducal marriages or important state visits.
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Re: About in Parma

Post by stevegwmonkseaton on Thu Jan 09, 2014 6:54 pm

JulianaAlice, we are the total opposite in not really wishing to see much these days, but this is wonderful post that inspires me to think again... Thanks... 

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Re: About in Parma

Post by la alma on Thu Jan 09, 2014 7:25 pm

I feel just likeJulianaAlice and needing to fly to a new airport is to me a chance of a new bit of adventure. Ryanair have decided that we can only have 3 months of Pisa flights from our local airport this year so it has to be Bergamo. We've done this before and visited Brescia and Lodi. At the end of April we'll be flying home from Bergamo and have decided to have 2 nights B&B near Salo on Lake Garda as OH has never been to the Lakes. We like to spend most of each hol at our own house, often spending days just pottering, but also spend some of the time exploring other parts of Italy. I was excited to discover we can soon fly to Bologna from a nearish airport, which is about as far as Bergamo from our house, so my brain is already ticking.......

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Re: About in Parma

Post by stevegwmonkseaton on Thu Jan 09, 2014 9:48 pm

la alma, I assume you have had a look around Bergamo (old bit)? Before we became a little sedate we went there for a short visit and found some wonderful little places in the town. Particularly liked the cafe in the funicular, it had a superb outside balcony that looked over the tram line coming up from the new town and the old town itself. Amazing to sit there at mid-day and hear the several church bells sound, some in sequence, some not...

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Re: About in Parma

Post by la alma on Fri Jan 10, 2014 5:43 pm

We explored the old part of Bergamo about 9 years ago so we're definitely due for another visit. It's on my list!

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Re: About in Parma

Post by Carciofo on Sat Jan 11, 2014 12:25 am

We've driven up to Parma a few times and it strikes me as a very smart, livable city. It really annoys me however that it is impossible to get there and back by train at convenient times. In fact it's more or less impossible to go anywhere in Italy (I think) after about 9 or 10 pm. I'd love to go up for the day, have a meal. go to the opera and then catch a train home but it's not possible. And although Parma's only an hour and 15 minutes from us, I don't fancy the journey on the autostrada della Cisa late at night.

Oh and just in case you are as rubbish as I am at directions, make a careful note of where Parma airport is for the return journey because I didn't find it at all well signposted.

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Re: About in Parma

Post by Vicino on Sat Jan 11, 2014 8:32 am

We live in Le Marche, and some friends visited us a few years back, flew into Ancona airport, hired a car, found our house, had a good time and then drove back to the airport.

They missed the turn off for the airport and had to drive some 40km round trip to get off the autostrada, and then get back on and drive back, because similarly, the signage is rubbish !

Interestingly, said friend is a commercial pilot ...............and he missed the airport !

What fun !!  Laughing 

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