Experiencing Ancient Athens: The Herodeon Theatre

After a summer spent in Crete and a good couple months visiting family in the States…

I’m back in my adopted hometown.

And honestly, it’s been a bit of a humdrum winding down from all the previous activity while waiting on news for our next big move (more on that later). So when Alex’s mom mentioned Carmen, a famous Flamenco performance, being shown at the ancient Odeon of Herodes Atticus Theatre (the Herodian)—I was more than down to go.

The Herodian Theatre is one of those places I’ve known quite a long time was there, but when you live somewhere, those local sites lose their urgency to be experienced because “they’ll always be there”. It’s a bad excuse, but it’s the truth of it.

After going, I have no idea what took me so long to go.

Sitting in an original archaic stone theatre on steeply sloped rows of marble seats underneath a half moon and a glowing Acropolis—it’s an Athenian masterpiece you wouldn’t want to miss.

The Herodeon Theatre– Athens, Greece
Alex’s mom, Valerie and I waiting for the performance to begin 🙂
Snapshot of Carmen, the Flamenco/Opera performance.

Originally constructed in 161 AD, it had magnificent three-story stone walls, a roof made of thick Lebanese cedars, and sat up to 5,000 people. It was a symbol of what still lingered of ancient Greece’s democratic prominence; and was built, of course, by the affluent Athenian aristocrat, Herodes Atticus, in memory of his love Aspasia Annia Regilla. This renowned artistic venue was the foundation of the southwestern slope below the Acropolis until 267 AD when the Heruli, an Eastern Germanic tribe, besieged the city and left it in ruins.

Historical image of The Herodeon Theatre (ca. 1880)

Restored in the 1950’s, it once again became the renowned artistic venue it once was. Holding iconic performers such as Maria Callas and Frank Sinatra, as well as events such as the 1973 Miss Universe pageant.

It still holds performances today in the warmer months of the year between May and October. Most of the events are posted on the Athens & Epidaurus Festival site, though not all events are hosted by them. So it’s good to Google events yourself to make sure you don’t miss out on any unlisted events!

Next week, I am hoping to be able to share with you more news on the transition of both this blog and Alex and I’s life, as we transition into a new season in a brand new place in the world.


1 thought on “Experiencing Ancient Athens: The Herodeon Theatre”

  1. Oh to be sitting in the same spot as thousands upon thousands of generations before you…..I can imagine how surreal that would feel….


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