Skip to main content
Smithsonian Associates - Entertaining, Informative, Eclectic, Insightful

This program is over.

Hope you didn't miss it! Browse other programs we offer.

Neighborhoods of Rome, Vienna, and Madrid

Discovering Hidden Gems
Evening Program (Session 2 of 3-Session Course)

Thursday, November 19, 2020 - 6:45 p.m. ET
Code: 1M2084BS
$30 - Member
$35 - Non-Member

Palazzo Doria Pamphilij, Rome (left), Vienna from St. Stephen Cathedral (right), and Egyptian Temple of Debod, Madrid (bottom)


  • This program is part of our Smithsonian Associates Streaming series.
  • Platform: Zoom
  • Online registration is required.
  • If you register multiple individuals, you will be asked to supply individual names and email addresses so they can receive a Zoom link email. Please note that if there is a change in program schedule or a cancellation, we will notify you via email, and it will be your responsibility to notify other registrants in your group.


Rome, Vienna, and Madrid were once the capital cities of vast empires. Each gathered within its confines the best artists, architects, thinkers, scientists, and chefs. All of them created deep roots in these cities, leaving treasures and pleasures often overlooked by visitors who spend their time in world-famous sites such as the Sistine Chapel, the Vienna State Opera, and the Prado. But it’s the off-the-beaten-track corners of these cities where unexpected gems await discovery.

Fred Plotkin, a popular Smithsonian Associates speaker on culture, history, and music, has lived in and visited Rome, Vienna, and Madrid over more than four decades. Join him for a richly illustrated series in which he looks at these places through the eyes of a flâneur—a French term for a person whose casual strolls through city streets produce delight in their chance discoveries. He shares what he’s found on his neighborhood walks: churches, theaters, specialty shops, restaurants, cafes, and unusual museums just a stone’s throw from world-famous landmarks.

For information on this Neighborhoods course or other sessions, please click here.



Founded by the ancient Romans, Vienna was the principal city of the Hapsburg Empire and home to musicians, painters, scientists, and spies speaking 15 different languages representing cultures from the Mediterranean to the Baltic. Native Viennese drew inspiration from these residents in their own creative pursuits. It became an unmatched center of design, reflected in furniture, architecture, and technology that was as functional as it was beautiful. The city is neatly organized in districts, with unusual museums devoted to butterflies, gravestones, and even the film The Third Man. Vienna’s Naschmarkt is an ancient food market that contains a theater where Beethoven lived and worked.


  • Once registered, patrons should receive an automatic email confirmation from
  • Separate Zoom link information will be emailed closer to the date of the program. If you do not receive your Zoom link information 24 hours prior to the start of the program, please email Customer Service for assistance.
  • View Common FAQs about our Streaming Programs on Zoom.

This program is part of our
Smithsonian Associates Streaming series.