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There are countless reasons to fall in love with Warsaw

Grand Theatre - National Opera (Gmach Teatru Wielkiego - Opery Narodowej)

One of the most modern theatres in Europe,
and the largest stage in the world.

plac Teatralny 1 (map)
Gmach Teatru Wielkiego - Opery Narodowej
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The original Grand Theatre was built in 1825-1833, and designed by Italian architect Antonio Corazzi, in an on-site shopping and service complex called ‘Marywil’ (the name came from the name of Queen Marysieńka Sobieska) which was a project by Tylmon of of Gameren. The opening was inaugurated by Rossini’s ‘Barber of Seville’ on February 24, 1833.
During the siege of Warsaw in 1939, the Grand Theatre was bombed and then almost completely burned down, with only the classical façade surviving. Among the ruins, during the Warsaw Uprising, the Nazis shot civilians.
In the course of its reconstruction between 1945-1965, the building was expanded considerably according to a design by Bohdan Pniewski. He put large and elegant dressing rooms on the ground floor and a spacious foyer on the first floor; the audience now sits where the stage originally stood. The modern stage – one with great facilities and the world's largest – was built on the square, which is adjacent to the theatre.
The opening of the rebuilt Grand Theatre took place on November 19, 1965. Commissioned for this inaugauration was ‘The Haunted Manor’ by Stanisław Moniuszko. In the Theatre Museum, visitors will find works of art and documents illustrating the history of Polish theatre, drama, opera and ballet dating from the 18th century.
The lateral wing of the building occupies the National Theatre, which has had a checkered history. It first burned down in 1919, then again during the war, and a third fire broke out in 1985. The rebuilding process took eleven years, and the stage has four super modern sides and fully computerized machinery.
In 2002, the facade was crowned with a statue of Apollo, which was consistent with the original intentions and plans by Antonio Corazzi; at the time, however, the statue could not be placed – along with many other decorative elements desired by the designer – because Tsar Nicholas I did not allow their inclusion, as he did not want the Polish National Opera to supercede the buildings in Russia. The creators of the modern quadriga are professors at the ASP (an art academy in Warsaw), Adam Myjak and Antoni Janusz Pastwa.
In front of the reconstructed front are memorials by Jan Szczepkowski showing the founder of Polish national opera, Stanisław Moniuszko, and the father of Polish theatre, Wojciech Bogusławski.

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