When the weather is ideal, experiencing an outdoor concert is one of life’s many pleasures. But does the venue make the concert, or vice-versa? With outdoor concert series Jubilee at the Botanics just around the corner, we take a look at some of the most scenic venues around the world:
Red Rocks Amphitheatre
Concert in a canyon: that pretty much sums it up for this iconic venue located near picturesque Morrison, Colorado, in the United States. The outdoor amphitheatre is located 6,450 feet above sea level, and surrounded by acres of earthly wonders. Geological conditions led to the two 300-foot sandstone monoliths forming the “walls” of the amphitheatre, providing a 100% natural yet acoustically perfect location for concerts, festivals and plays. Red Rocks can sit a 9,500-strong audience and was home to concerts featuring the likes of the late BB King, Nat King Cole, the prestigious Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo and even contemporary artistes such as BrunoMars, John Mayer and One Direction.
Cultural village by day, music festival venue by night – the Rainforest World Music Festival is the pride of world music. Nestled against the base of the 2,660 feet-tall Mount Santubong in Kuching, Sarawak, the 3-day festival is packed with activities such as workshops, ethno-musical lectures, jamming sessions and of course, marquee performances. Set against the backdrop of giant tropical trees, the concert venue is now one of the largest musical events in Malaysia, with almost 30,000 concertgoers from across the globe flocking to enjoy the best of traditional, fusion and contemporary world music.
Sidney Myer Music Bowl
Set in the sprawling lawns of the Kings Domain Gardens in Melbourne, Australia, the Sidney Myer Music Bowl is Australia’s largest permanent outdoor performance venue. Registered on the Victorian Heritage list, the Bowl’s construction was commissioned by the Sidney Myer fund in honour of its late businessman and philanthropist namesake. The hugely popular summertime venue can hold an audience of 30,000, and has hosted international acts the likes of ABBA, Paul McCartney, the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, and more recently Swedish House Mafia and The Black Keys.
Arena di Verona
Do not assume the Arena di Verona for another touristy ruin site. Built in the first century by the Romans to host gladiator shows, the amphitheatre is one of the best-conserved monuments of its kind. Despite being almost completely destroyed by an earthquake in 1117, it was rebuilt and is now the largest open-air opera house in the world. Operatic performances commenced during the 1850s and the venue gained popularity for such performances due to the arena’s exceptional acoustics. Each year, the Arena sees over 500,000 attendees for opera performances. As the Arena gained prominence, international acts such as Pink Floyd, Alicia Keys, Muse, and the late Whitney Houston also held concerts there.
Shaw Foundation Symphony Stage
Sitting at the end of a large lily pond located in the middle of the Singapore Botanic Gardens, the Shaw Foundation Symphony Stage is Singapore’s most iconic outdoor concert venue. The unique shape of the stage echoes the organic forms of flowers and leaves inspired by the lush greenery of the Gardens, which is bidding to be inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Instrumental recitals, orchestral performances and plays frequently hold court there, and up to 3,000 people can enjoy the proceedings while resting on the natural grass lawns. Even on non-concert days, families are often spotted enjoying themselves in the sun with their pets, alongside exercise enthusiasts working out in the area.
So what are you waiting for? Get your picnic gear ready and head down to the Shaw Foundation Symphony Stage this weekend on 30 and 31 May, for a series of great concerts by the Singapore Chinese Orchestra and Singapore Symphony Orchestra. Jubilee at the Botanics, a weekend of musical discovery, awaits!