One of the places to visit in Oman is the Royal Opera House Muscat (ROHM). It is the premier venue for musical arts and culture. The ruler of Oman, Sultan Qaboos bin Said has been always a fan of classical music and arts. In 2001, the sultan ordered the building of the opera house which is the first in gulf region. The Opera House is located in Shati – Al Qurum, Muscat.
Royal Opera House Muscat has hosted numerous shows both international and regional. Andrea Bocelli is just one of them who performed at the exquisite location.
I was grateful, I got the chance to watch one of the shows Don Quixote ballet end of last year. It was my first time to visit the Opera House. I was taken aback by its beauty. The grandiose huge white structure of the opera house is really impressive. The interior design even enthralled me more. The design is a reflection of Islamic architecture and art in a modern form. Since it was my first time to attend a formal show, I can’t stopped looking around. All were dressed up. The show I had watched with my sister and my friend was a ballet in four acts and eight scenes based on episodes taken from the famous novel Don Quixote de la Mancha by Miguel De Cervantes. By the time I watched a show, I have noticed there were relatively few Omanis enjoying the show. Most of the audience seemed to be either expats or tourists.
It should be noted that they have a strict dress code. ROHM follows a strict formal or business dress code attending the show. No jeans, t- shirts or tennis shoes are allowed. For Omanis this means disdasha/thobe for men and formal attire for women. For non-Omanis this means suits for men and conservative dresses below the knee for females. I remember when we watched the show my friend was asked to wear abaya as she was wearing a dress within the knee level. Abayas were available at the opera house to be used by guests. I guess it was better than not watching the show at all.
It is necessary to arrive early, for you not to miss any part of the show. Show starts on time. There is a strict security check at the entrance as well. It is advisable to eat before you attend an opera show. There is a short break but it might not be enough to feed your hunger or be distracted by your rumbling stomach. It should be noted that the phone should be on silent mode or totally switched off.
For those having no time to watch a show, it is open to the public to view the main hall and the theater daily from 8.30am to 10.30am. You can also visit the Opera Galleria which is part of the Opera House. It is a luxury shopping destination with wide range of exclusive, top quality products and fine dine restaurants. I recently visited the place to have a look of the sophistication of the shopping center. For a difference, I enjoyed the refined ambiance from a regular mall. From all the luxurious items i have seen there, the only thing I can’t forget was the watch worth 10,000 OMR/ 25,000 USD/ 1.2 million PHP. Gee!
Visiting the Opera House Muscat is a worthwhile experience! If you plan to watch a world class show, the tickets should be bought months before the show as it is usually sold out. You can visit Royal Opera House website to check the schedule and ticket prices. What’s the next international show on the line? It’s West Side Story on February 2017!
Would you like to visit an opera house? Share your comments below.