Strasbourg, and a French theatre warning

Mini-rant first. Going to the theatre in France is never easy. Granted, it would be easier if I spoke French, but I place the blame for what has happened purely on the shoulders of others because that’s what a good Sagittarius does.*

It happened to a pal in Paris first. He booked a ticket to see a show in a famous theatre, with a big old fancy building, and he turned up to find the show was, in fact, not on there at all. He re-read his ticket and there, at the bottom, upside down, semi-transparent and in cuneiform, is the name of the alternate venue. Lo and behold, the show is happening fifteen to twenty minutes away, and it’s time to hop on a bike.

Next, it happened to me in Nancy. The Opera house is VERY FAMOUSLY on Place Stanislas. Alas, I end up running through the streets with moments to spare to reach Salle Poirel – ‘salle’ meaning room, and not ‘un tout autre bâtiment’. Silly me for not knowing both the layout of the Opera De Lorraine, or every salle in city.

Bear in mind that, like any sensible traveller, I’m booking tickets online – you gotta plan those short city breaks in advance. I realise now that the capricious nature of the French theatre makes this a bad plan. You need to walk in to a physical box office, look the middle aged saleswoman dead in the eye, and buy your ticket in person, so she can tattoo venue directions into the skin of your forearm.

Anyway, all this is to say I bought tickets for the Strasbourg Opera on Saturday and turned up to find the show was on in another city in Alsace, which made loads of sense.** And thank god I resisted the urge to book a theatre show in Lyon for Wednesday, because it was cancelled by the time I arrived in the city, today. Why? Because they’re probably all Geminis.*

Theatre aside, Strasbourg really a cutesy little Germanic pêche of a city. Check out these adorable buildings (all of which are probably showing operas from the regional theatres of Dunkirk and Nîmes)

And of course the Alsacian Museum, which raised the bar on rustic, romantic interiors. Try and beat THAT, Marseilles. Ya can’t.

Next stop? Lyon!

S x

* I don’t understand horoscopes and have no idea if this is true.

** It made no sense.

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