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The iconic Teatro La Fenice, the Venice opera house located in Sestiere di San Marco in campo San Fantin remains the most high-profile lyric theatre in that city. Twice destroyed and rebuilt, it is home to major opera seasons, symphony concerts and the International Festival of Contemporary Music. On 29 January 1996 a devastating fire, the work of arsonists, destroyed the theatre. The Venice firefighters spent all night tackling the blaze. The entire world wept at the loss of one of the most beautiful opera houses on the planet, whose superb acoustics have made it a shining star of the world of Italian and European opera, music and culture. Out of the pain of that loss grew the desire to rebuild this historic theatre, inspired by the saying “the way it was, where it was” coined for the rebuilding of the Saint Mark’s bell tower. Immediately after the fire all the necessary work was carried out to prevent any hazards for public safety. Ten Italian and overseas firms took part in the call for tenders for the reconstruction. After some appeals, A.T.I. Holzmann was awarded the contract for the design by architect Aldo Rossi. The theatre’s inaugural week took place from the14th to the 21st December 2003.