Not for the faint of heart, we invite you to visit these 6 haunted venues to see a show… and maybe more. From stagehands to headliners, encounters with the paranormal have become part of the mise en scène at some of these spaces. Brave enough to see for yourself?
Palais Garnier - The Paris Opera
8 Rue Scribe, 75009 Paris, France
Though now mainly used for ballet, the Palais Garnier is the very same opera house that served as the inspiration for the 1910 novel by Gaston Leroux and the subsequent hit musical, The Phantom of the Opera. The opulent and gilded Second-Empire Beaux-Arts building, constructed between 1861 and 1875 is rumored to house more than just a world-renowned stage (and the Bibliothèque-Museé de l'Opéra de Paris – the Paris Opera Library Museum). The famous chandelier fall during the stage production of The Phantom of the Opera is rooted in fact – one of the extravagant crystal chandeliers in the auditorium did fall in 1896, killing an unlucky construction worker. More importantly, however, legend has it that in the early 20th century, during one of the many renovations of the building, a hidden apartment was unearthed, with some versions of the tale include the discovery of a male corpse. This rumor led to the hit novel and hit play; however, the specter that is most often reported in the Palais Garnier is that of an older woman who reportedly committed suicide and haunts the streets outside the Opera House, searching for her jilted lover – perhaps seeking revenge?
What's Playing: Jean-Philippe Rameau's comedic opera Platée is playing through October 8, while ballet enthusiasts have a slew of performances to choose from, including "20 Dancers for the 20th Century" from choreographer Boris Charmatz, and "Robbins/Millepied/Blanachine" brought to life by choreographer Benjamin Millepied as he pays tribute to masters of dance George Balanchine and Jerome Robbins both through October 11. Subsequently, the Palais Garnier will see a new production from renowned choreographer Anne Teresa De Keermaeker from October 21 through November 8.
The Palais Garnier exterior day. Image c/o Wikimedia Commons
Compiled and edited by James Hodges
Bucket List Venue: Madison Square Garden - NY, NY
Why I need to see this venue: I recently moved to the northeast from Seattle and I've always wanted to attend an event at Madison Square Garden. I wouldn't care if it was a concert, basketball game, or hockey game. I just want to enjoy the experience, take in the history, but most importantly be able to say I've been to MSG!
It's not enough to simply say that One Direction won out the weekend. Instead, it's more accurate to say that tickets for the band's upcoming "Where We Are" Tour completely dominated the weekend. Over 1/3 of all tickets sold at TicketNetwork.com on Saturday and Sunday were for the band's events*. And I'm not just talking about 1/3 of concert ticket sales here, but 1/3 of all ticket sales, including concerts, sports, and theater events.
There are also some interesting stats when we dig deeper. First, one might expect the venue that did the best is the one with multiple shows, which is not an unreasonable assumption as it happens often enough, and there are a number of cities on this tour with two-day stops. But that's not what happened this weekend for One Direction. Rather, the top-selling venue was one with only a single show: the August 13 concert at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, PA. Closely following up in second place was Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, MA, which has two shows on August 7 and 8. Here are the top five:
Map by U.S. Geological Survey. Public domain.
Last summer I did an analysis of how far people travel to get to a festival, thinking that most people were willing to go far from home to get to them. In fact, people did not travel very far. As it turned out, the largest chunk of people was only willing to travel up to 150 miles from home to attend a festival.
That was festivals; what about regular concerts? Well, at the time I generally knew that people traveled only short distances to get to them. What hadn't been done was an actual analysis. Now one has been done and the results are pretty stark.
Not only are people also willing to travel only up to 150 miles to get to a regular concert, it is the upper limit pretty overwhelmingly. While the numbers for festivals varied a lot (between 33% and 90% depending on the festival), with regular concerts the norm is almost always 60% of attendees only traveling 150 miles or less.