Magnificent Mariinsky

Dr P. N - London

Dear Andrew,

We had a great time in St Petersburg. Hotel was good, All arrangements went smoothly. Performances were great.

Slight ‘Wild West’ feel – especially with the taxis. No meters and tough negotiations to get a reasonable price. We chose to cab it from the hotel to the theatre and vice versa, and price varied from 450 Roubles to 700! But the whole experience was fantastic. We spent two days at the Hermitage and yesterday did St Isaacs, the Church of the Spilled Blood and strolled the Nevsky Prospect. Obviously we barely scratched the surface.

One minor point. The seats in the stalls at the Mariinsky are directly behind the seat in front (ie not staggered and only a very minor ramp). Hence if there is a tall person in front of you,  you miss the middle third of the stage. If the person in front of them is tall, the person directly in front to you constantly moves their head from side to side. I’d recommend Dress Circle seats in boxes 8 – 15, preferably in the front row (or the back row, which is elevated, but not the second row which is on the qame level as the first) would give the best view for both ballet and opera. The theatre is not all that deep so if customers don’t want to sit ‘that far back’ I think they can be reassured that they will have perfect sight lines and see and hear clearly.

2011-05-03