The famous Herodeon theatre, the majestic stage, on the slopes of the Acropolis in Athens, has been identified as one of the ten most beautiful theatres in the world, according to a new research using eye-tracking technology to assert which theatres people’s eyes were drawn to the most.

Over 35 of the world’s most beautiful theatres were studied in research done by hotel chain Premier Inn, revealing that Cornwall’s stunning open-air Minack Theatre over Porthcurno Bay, was the most appealing to the eye, followed by the Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles and Dubai Opera in third place, with a design inspired by a dhow, a traditional sailboat.

PTop of the list was the Minack Theatre, Porthcurno, in Cornwall. Photo: depositphotos

The Odeon of Herodes Atticus in Athens, Greece is the ninth most beautiful theatre in the world, according to the research. Locally known simply as Herodeon, the stone-made Roman theatre held the gaze of study participants for 4.04 seconds on average, and, unsurprisingly, is considered Athens’ most majestic stage. It stands today as a semi-circle orchestra of black and white marble overlooking the city.

Built in AD 161 by Herodes Atticus in memory of his Roman wife, Aspasia Annia Regilla, the Odeon of Herodes Atticus was originally a steep-sloped theatre with a three-story stone front wall and a wooden roof made of Lebanon timber. It was used as a venue for music concerts with a capacity to host an audience of 5,000. It lasted for more than 100 years before it was left in ruins by the Heruli in AD 267.

The Odeon of Herodes Atticus on the south slope of the Acropolis in Athens, Greece. c 161 AD.

The audience stands and the stage were restored using Pentelic marble in the 1950s and since then it has been the main venue of the Athens Festival, which runs from May through October each year, featuring a variety of Greek and International acclaimed performances.

Interestingly, the Sydney Opera House failed to catch the eyes of many, not even making it to the top 20 most beautiful theatres in the world. Meanwhile, the Guangzhou Opera House in China was the seventh most beautiful theatre in the world and Belfast’s Grand Opera House closely followed, ranking in eighth place.

The Sydney Opera House failed to make the list. Photo: nsoula/Depositphotos

The study used a unique way of analysing the objective beauty of theatres. Participants were asked to look at a series of images of 36 of the world’s most famous theatres, looking at both the outside building and interior theatre, and eye-tracking technology was then used to reveal which images drew the human eye most.

The Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles, USA. Photo:

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