Teatro Argentina

Entertainment & Arts

Europe, Italy, Rome

The Teatro Argentina is an opera house and theatre located in the Largo di Torre Argentina, a square in Rome, Italy. It is one of the oldest theatres in Rome, and was inaugurated on January 31, 1732 with Berenice by Domenico Sarro. It was commissioned (built) by the Sforza Cesarini family and designed by the architect Gerolamo Theodoli with the auditorium laid out in the traditional horseshoe shape. The inside of the theatre is constructed of wood with six levels of boxes characterizing the design, and has been restored many times. In the 19th century, the premieres of many notable operas took place in the theatre. They include Gioachino Rossini's The Barber of Seville in 1816, and Giuseppe Verdi's I due Foscari in 1844 and La battaglia di Legnano in 1849. From 1919 to 1944, more musical offerings than dramatic ones were presented, although the theatre premiered works by Luigi Pirandello, Henrik Ibsen and Maxim Gorky during this time. As well, a series of operas was presented in the winter of 1944-45 in honor of the American and British troops. The theatre became the home of the Teatro Stabile company of Rome in 1994, currently directed by Mario Martone. It offers a variety of programmes, some being large-scale productions, although more plays than music or opera are presented today.