The Municipal Theatre
Another must-see for the building's beauty as much as its cultural activities
A stage visited by some of the biggest stars
Located in the area known as Cinelândia in Marechal Floriano Square, this is a space of more than 4,200 square metres, and one of Río’s most distinguished symbols of the early 20th century. Its construction took place between 1905 and 1909, at the proposal of mayor and engineer, Francisco Pereira Passos, who was devoted to giving the city a modern feel. The eclectic design of the theatre, produced by architects Francisco de Oliveira and Albert Guilbert, was inspired by the Paris Opera House by Charles Garnier. For its construction, they used materials imported from Europe and the Old World. During its first few years, the shows performed inside were fundamentally by French and Italian drama companies. With more than 2,300 seats, its interior boasts paintings and sculptures from the most notable Brazilian artists such as Eliseu Visconti and Rodolfo Berardelli. In 1931 the theatre put together its own artistic group, the Río de Janeiro Municipal Theatre Orchestra, formed by a ballet, a choir and a symphonic band, that still performs inside to this day. Artists such as Maria Callas, Igor Stravinsky and Arturo Toscanini, amongst many more, have also taken to its stage. More information is available at www.theatromunicipal.rj.gov.br.
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