With their penchant for building in beautiful settings, the Greeks perched the second-largest ancient theater in Sicily, after the one in Siracusa, on the rocky flanks of Mount Tauro. The backdrop of smoldering Mount Etna and the sea crashing far below certainly provided as much drama as any theatrical production. Romans rebuilt much of the theater, adding the finishing touches on what we see today in the 2nd century a.d., and put the arena to use for gladiatorial events. In ruin, but with much of the hillside cavea, or curved seating area, intact, the theater is still the setting for performances and film screenings, greatly enhanced by columns and arches framing the sea and volcano in the background. Check with TaorminaArte's headquarters, Corso Umberto 19 (www.taoarte.it; [tel] 0942-21142), or at the tourist office for exact dates and show times.
- Frommer's Staff