Beautiful Theaters to visit in a lifetime

Theater, Opera, Ballet,  the performing arts that always stood beside the five main (historically) arts, inspired people to build some of the most beautiful architectural masterpieces in the world. Art has the power to change us as individuals and the world in its complexity and, in the darkest times, reminds us how much value humankind has to offer. And maybe this is why we always struggled to create the most impressive homes for it.

Art is a blessing no matter where we meet it, but the theaters that host Theater plays, Opera or Ballet have the power to amplify our delight (feel free to disagree).

So I made up a list with part of the theaters where I would love to see my favorite plays (and discover new ones), hope you will find them as attractive as I do.

When in Malta visit Teatru Manoel

One of the oldest working arts venue in Europe, Teatru Manoel was built at the order of the Grand Master of the Medieval Catholic military order that we today know as Sovereign Military Order of Malta. Located in Valletta, Malta, the theater opened its doors on the 19th of January 1732 and since then hosts both opera and drama plays. I’m sure that its walls “heard and saw” more conspiracy than many fictional novels. If you’re in Valletta and you plan to visit it you should know that it is closed until November 30 due to maintenance work. You can find more information by visiting teatrumanoel.com.mt.

Picture of Manoel theater in Malta
source: maltatourist.wordpress.com

Shakespeare’s Globe theater – A travel in time

As the official website announces us, “Shakespeare’s Globe is a unique international resource dedicated to the exploration of Shakespeare’s work and the playhouse for which he wrote”. The theater Hall is a modern reconstruction of the original theater where Shakespeare’s dramas were played, built at the end of the 16th century. I find it fascinating to be able to “travel” to those days and I plan to visit it as soon as possible.

Picture of Shakespeare's theater, London.
source: londontown.com

Teatro Olimpico from Vicenza

“a theater based on the ancient model, but in small proportions and indescribably beautiful…”Goethe

A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Teatro Olimpico from Vicenza “is the first indoor theater in masonry in the world”. It was initially designed by Andrea Palladio, one of the key figures of Renaissance architecture, and was inaugurated in March 1585. The onstage scenario is the oldest stage set still standing and one of the most beautiful things you have ever seen, picturing a great facade that hosts 3 passageways that grant access towards city streets.

Picture of teatro Olimpico, Vicenza.
source: studentsblog.viublogs.org

Palais Garnier

Inaugurated on 5 January 1875, Palais Garnier has a seating capacity of 1900 and was named “probably the most famous opera house in the world”.(link Wikipedia). For those who haven’t had the pleasure of visiting it Paris Opera and Google Cultural Institute collaborated and provided a virtual tour using Google Street Technology. Enjoy!     

Picture of the main stairway, Opera Garnier.
source: Wikipedia.org

Minack Theater

In England, Minack theater offers a view which will take your breath away: carved into granite cliffs, this +80 years old theater hosts dozens of shows each year. Situated just a few mile from Great Britain’s Westernmost point (on the mainland), Minack theater is used each year from April to September (due to weather conditions) but can be visited throughout the year.

Picture of Minack theater, United Kingdom.
source: cornwallforever.co.uk

Walnut Street Theater

Philadelphia hosts the oldest still operating theater in the United States, founded in 1809. Over the years great artist like Audrey Hepburn, Jack Lemmon, Henry Fonda, Sidney Poitier and many more performed on its stage, helping Walnut becoming the theater company with the most season ticket owners (over 55.000). P.s. there are a few stories about the ghosts that haunt the theater, visit their FB page and read more about the subject.

Picture with the Walnut Street Theater building.
source: walnutstreettheater.org

The Teatro Colon

I’ve never been to Buenos Aires but for me, it’s one of the most fascinating cities in the world. I associate its name with culture, dance, wine, and passion. Named “the Paris of the South”, “the most European city in South America” “Manhattan in the southern hemisphere” Buenos Aires is home to one of the best Opera Houses in the world, Teatro Colon. Opened in the first decade of the 20th century the building is designed in eclecticism architectural style and has an auditorium that hosts almost 2500 seats. A must see!

Auditorium of Teatro Colon, Buenos Aires.
source: turismo.buenosaires.gob_.ar

P.s. another “not-to-be-missed” theater hall in Buenos Aires is El Ateneo Grand Splendid, theater hall that now hosts a bookstore and welcomes over 1 million visitors a year. Click here for more photos.

p.p.s. not quite a theater hall but I really hope to see a live show at “La Bombonera” as well.

The Former Imperial Theater

Mariinsky Teatr from Sankt Petersburg is home to not only one of the world’s greatest ballet companies in the world but also one of the world’s most famous curtain. Opened in 1860 the former imperial theater it’s the proud owner of a luxurious main curtain that embraces its stage for over a century. Watching a fabulous show from the Tzar’s box it’s something worth telling your nephews.

Tsar's lodge at Mariinsky Theater, St. Petersburg.
source: mircorp.com/Jenelle Birnbaum

…Where the shows never end

The city that never sleeps has a district where the shows never stop. There are over 40 professional theaters (3 of which survived on Broadway attracting over 10.000.000 spectators a season. So definitely if you ever plan to visit the world a theater at a time New York’s Theater District must be on your map.

source: whstherebellion.com/?p=67156
source: whstherebellion.com/?p=67156

Bolshoi Theater

For last I’ve saved the theater that hosts world’s most famous school of ballet. Bolshoi Theater, home of both Bolshoi Ballet and Bolshoi Opera, opened almost 200 years ago (50 years after Bolshoi  Ballet was founded). The 2000 seat masterpiece was subject to several renovations (and one major reconstruction) in its long existence but I think it’s fair to say that it still holds the atmosphere of times when princes and princesses admired its magnificence.

Picture of the facade of Bolshoi Theatre, Moscow.
source: grohe.com

I hope you enjoyed our “world tour” and please let us know if you have a preferred theater that you think people should know about.
And for those of you who manage a Theater (or other types of venues): here is how you can use Oveit to manage your venue, but please feel free to contact us for more info.

Further reading:

wikipedia.org

teatrumanoel.com.mt

shakespearesglobe.com

minack.com

teatrolimpicovicenza.it

operadeparis.fr

walnutstreettheatre.org

teatrocolon.org.ar

mariinsky.ru

bolshoi.ru

4 great reasons why people attend conferences

“That glorious vision of doing good is so often the sanguine mirage of so many good minds.” Charles Dickens, A Tale of Two Cities.

man on stage at a conference

What is the connection between attending conferences and one of the most appreciated novels ever written? Talking to a friend about Dickens’s novel I realized that I have my own personal story about two cities (better said about the people that live in those two cities). Two cities that, on the same day, will host two great events which Oveit proudly supports. On the 25th of October,  Gary Vaynerchuk and Steve Wozniak, 5500 miles apart, will help thousands of people find the courage to follow their dreams. And being involved in both events made me realize that, no matter the culture we belong to, when it comes to conferences we all have the same reasons for which attend them (and, more or less, the same expectations). In my personal experience, I noticed that people attend conferences for:

 

The chance of meeting their idols

As kids, most of us have athletes, movie stars or singers as idols. As we grow up and see the world from a different perspective we start to appreciate more the people who invested their time and energy to really make a difference. And some of the today’s leaders are entrepreneurs that influenced the world: Bill Gates, Gary Vaynerchuk, Steve Wozniak, Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos and many more. It’s reasonable to say that people will go the extra mile to meet their idols, so having a well-known leader on your speakers’ list will generate more interest for your event.

 

People attend conferences for networking

Conferences offer great networking opportunities, and many attend them just to find themselves surrounded by people with similar interests. A great way to encourage people to attend your conferences is to communicate the demographics of your past audiences (or if this is the first edition to make it clear to whom you address your conference). People hope to meet new customers, partners or even mentors at a conference, so let them know that this is possible.

Event badges will work as “icebreakers” within events, this is why we developed an app that allows #eventprofs print beautiful personalized badges – on the spot!

 

Hearing new ideas

If you think that the internet is full of new ideas…you’re right. But I can bet that every speaker has some great ideas that he keeps for special occasions, and speaking in front of hundreds (or even thousands) really sounds like special. Not to mention that the emotion of hearing it LIVE from your idol will make it very hard not to apply it; so conferences also work great in those moments when we lack not ideas but the motivation to apply them.

 

Investing in themselves

The only 100% secure investment is the one made in yourself. Today, more than ever, we live in a world where everything is possible and knowledge can break any barrier. Education offers us the chance of a better life (and the possibility to make the world a better place) and the Internet offers the opportunity of showing the world what we are capable of – with just a few clicks. People attend conferences because they see them as a great investment in themselves and self-investment is the key that will open any closed door. Create your event around powerful new information and your target audience will want to attend it.

 

These are some of the main reasons for which people attend conferences. But it’s important to remember that the overall experience will determine if people will come to your future events or not.

 

Apart from some cultural differences (that we all should accept and appreciate) we all want the same things when planning to attend a conference: to buy tickets with fewer clicks (remember that any extra step is a barrier that your possible attendee needs to overcome); to avoid queueing (cashless payments systems based on NFC really changed waiting times at big events; innovation (technology makes it easier for you to engage your attendees, making them feel important and appreciated – which they are); valuable information – the main reason for which people will attend your conference.

Cashless payments dramatically improve water parks experience

As the northern hemisphere melts down under the mighty sun I had the greatest idea ever (not!): why don’t I write an article about water parks and how the industry adapts itself. Because what can be cooler (pun not intended) than documenting exotic water parks while you ride a crowded subway to work? But this article walked me around the world, helping me discover incredible destinations, epic constructions, and some interesting ways of using #tech.

slip-1005922_1920

I found up some interesting facts about water parks:

 

The Waterpark Capital of the world is…Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin. But although Wisconsin is home to the biggest water park in the U.S.A. (Noah’s Ark Waterpark) and has more water parks per capita than any other place in the world, the state of Florida leads when talking about the number of attendees; the biggest four locations gathered over 7.2 million people in 2016.

 

The first indoor water park was built in Edmonton, Canada, in 1985 and was the biggest indoor waterpark until 2004.

 

The biggest indoor waterpark in the world is Tropical Islands, situated 60 km outside Berlin. The building was initially designed as an aircraft hangar and it’s one of the biggest self-supported halls in the world (the dome is 107 meters high)… It’s spectacular! Tropical Island Resort also opened an outdoor section which helped them bring in over 1.1 million attendees in 2016 (a spectacular 13% increase if compared to 2015).

 

Speaking of leaps forward, another European Waterpark holds the record for the biggest percentage increase: Siam Park, located in the Canary Islands, opened its gates for over 1 mil guests in 2016, a 15% increase if compared to 2015.

 

When speaking of the total number of guests the gold medal goes to Chimelong Water Park, from China, which had over 2.5 mil attendees last year; that’s about 600.000 more than South America’s most visited water park, Thermas dos Laranjais.

 

As I was saying…it’s hard to concentrate when things are melting down around you. Fortunately, there are plenty of places that can help us overcome the heat, and water parks and pools are there to help. But you know what is not helping? The need to carry cash and/or cards when we are in our bathing suits…

I’m an advocate of using NFC technology for water parks, a technology that can make the experience a better one for attendees. How? By linking the wristband to a customer account and crediting it (so there will be no need to carry cash around or periodically visiting the locker to grab some more). Also, the wristband can replace the key to the locker, helping attendees concentrate on the only thing that should be important while they are on site: having fun!

“Paper and coin currency in water parks will go the way of the dinosaur,” said Buddy Wilkes, from Shipwreck Island Waterpark, Florida. And I totally agree.

 

Let’s review the major benefits of contactless payments:

 

To business:

  • Reduced cash handling by employees (so cases of fraud or human error are out of the question)
  • Improves transaction speed (a report from American Express states that “contactless transactions are 63% faster than cash and 53% faster than using a traditional credit card”)
  • Order value increases by over 30% (customers have instant access to their money, eliminating the extra step of walking to the wallet will increase the number of purchases)
  • Information about guests
  • Ability to prioritize clients (that pay extra for different benefits)

 

To guests:

  • Possibility to receive preferred customer benefits (this is the kind of experience that is hard to forget)
  • Reduces the risk of losing the ticket (or the cash/personal card)
  • Eliminates the need for holding separated tickets for different areas on site (the wristband can store all the access information)
  • They can keep track of family members
  • No more need to wait in line

 

The idea of using a wristband for contactless payments isn’t new and the technology has been used for some years in the industry but this year we witnessed something great. Orlando Volcano Bay, opened in May 2017, took the technology one step further: their waterproof wristband, Tapu Tapu, announces you when it’s your time to use a ride; this smart wearable it’s not just for cashless payments, it also waits in a virtual line for you, so you can do something else until it’s your time to use the ride.

 

There is one more great benefit of using wristbands for contactless payments (and also to store access credentials and to unlock your locker) and I let it last on purpose; not because it is not important, but because I want it to be the idea that you’ll stick to: going paperless will make a big change to the environment. This totally slipped my mind, but the guys from Waterbom Bali helped me realize how important this benefit is to us all. It’s been over 7 years since they first started using waterproof wristbands for cashless payments and are happy about the improvements made: because they are aiming to be #1 water park in the world that cares about the environment. Maybe this is why people love them some much and voted them as the number 1 water park in Asia in the Tripadvisor TraveleresChoice ranking. You rock, guys!

P.s.  For more statistical data you can check out Statista, Wikipedia or http://www.teaconnect.org/images/files/TEA_235_103719_170601.pdf, that’s what I did :).

We Are Museums is becoming better year by year

“From museum professionals, cultural venues, heritage owners, startups and businesses, we make worlds collide and collaborate.” – WAM

Untitled design(2)

Created in 2013, We are Museums is meant to bring the two different worlds of innovation and culture on a common ground. The purpose is to help professionals from both industries find solutions to re-define the field of museums and culture through cutting edge technology.

It is the second year in a row when Oveit is taking part at Tech Loves Culture within WAM and we may say that we are really excited to see visible progress within the number and diversity of the participants.

Finding solutions to re-define the field of museums and culture through cutting edge technology

The technologies available in this year’s representation did cover a large spectrum in the triangle formed by: Culture & Art – Visitors – Technology.

Some of the most interesting and innovative technology present at WAM were:

Artlokator  a platform that connects all major art market places in one: art platforms, online & traditional auction houses, galleries, art dealers and private collectors. The website provides free valuations and knowledge about art pieces, a data library to search for items and art market trends. As well as an online gallery where you can get inspired and can share your works of art with the global art lovers community.

Overly is the first and only agency in the Baltic States that focuses on the development of augmented reality solutions and other interactive technologies that can be used within museum with the purpose of offering a more interactive experience and an easier way to assimilate and learn new information.

Vastari is dedicated to museums around the world that organise many exhibitions a year. The interface and networking tools offered by Vatsari makes it easier for these museums to communicate with the private sector directly, to tour exhibitions globally and share information for exhibitions worldwide.

Mash Machine players combine bass, drum, melody and vocal samples by placing and moving blocks on the surface. The algorithm and the custom content ensure the resulting music is always in key and on time. With no possibility to make a mistake, newly born DJs relax and experiment with music styles ranging from rock and hip hop to deep electronic techno.

Catchbox is the world’s first soft, wireless microphone that you can throw into the audience to kickstart a discussion. Catchbox improves lectures, conferences, and group work by encouraging audiences and groups to share ideas and discuss problems. The colorful box is intuitive to use, and having it thrown around engages audience members while breaking the ice. The Catchbox is a combination of innovative product design and state of the art audio technology. With a microphone element suitable for professionals the innovative AutoMute technology, Catchbox sets new standards for the audience microphone. In addition, the unique locking mechanism means that the cover is easy to replace and change. Catchbox Custom Cover is an entirely new visual medium to communicate your own brand effectively. Whether it’s your own logo, crucial event information, or a spot for sponsors, the Custom Cover is guaranteed to give you the extra exposure boost.

The list continues with many other innovative technology and products which will definitely change the whole experience offered by museums in the near future.

Museums are investing in technology with the purpose of reshaping the traditional museum into a conjuring experience. They are not only acknowledging the new services as Facebook, YouTube or Snapchat but they are actually trying to find ways of fitting in alongside them.

Read more about how to engage visitors emotionally on our blog.