The Odeion

This structure located on the hillside of Mouth Pion that was defined as the City Council Hall (Bouleuterion) or Concert Hall (Odeion) after its discovery by J.T. Wood, who excavated at Ephesus in the 19th century. The Odeion was the place where the members of the City Council, comprising the wealthy people of Ephesus and Kuretes (Priests) gathered and discussed the future of the city and also listened to musical concerts. It is understood from the inscriptions on the architrave that it was constructed by P. Vedius Antonius and his wife Flavia Papiana, who were amongst the wealthy inhabitants of the city in the 2nd century A.D. Its seating area (Cavea) is encircled with a thick semi-circular wall and is supported by vaulted foundations. Its seating capacity is for approximately 1500 people. Entrance to the diazoma is provided by the gates of the Stoic Basilica, on the east and west corners of the stage structure. There are also entrances from the gates in the northern wall and in the high arched spaces on the edges of the Parados. There is broad diazoma (walkway) which divides the seating area into two foundations. Its seating capacity xareas (cavea) are divided by radial stairs into sections called kerkis. It is presumed from the architectural parts and the traces that were found in the excavations that there used to be a gallery adorned with red-marble columns behind the upper seating area (cavea). The ground of the orchestra, which is between the lowest seating area and the stage, was originally covered with a stone slab pavement. The front of the stage (scaenae frons) is of two storeys with columns and aediculas (small niches) that were filled with statues and the stage can be entered through five smaller gates. Today there is not much is left of this spectacular stage. In order to protect the audience from the sun and rain, small structures such as the Bouleuterion and Odeion, were covered by a fixed roof. These roofs were usually covered by wood and fired clay tiles, supported by a big triangular sculptures of Emperor Verus, a wooden truss framework. The young Faustina, a torso of Silenos and Mousa Erate were amongst the sculptural finds made by J.T. Wood in the 19th century, and which were taken to the British Museum, London. The restoration work in the Odeion was conducted by the Seljuk Museum of Ephesus in 1970 and 1990.