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Teatre Principal

Barcelona’s oldest theatre

Théâtre Principal, Barcelone.

One of the good things that happened in Barcelona’s generally depressing 16th century is that it finally got its first theatre, in 1568. Originally called the Teatro de la Santa Creu, it was built on donated land along the up and coming Rambla to help finance the Antic Hospital de la Santa Creu with its ticket sales. These were considerable: for centuries it was the only stage in town, hosting both plays and operas

Teatre Principal, foto ca. 1850, amb l'antiga façana de 1847

It underwent various rebuildings, then burned to the ground in 1787. The local nobility pitched in for a new theatre, which was ready the following year. But the opening of the nearby Liceu led to its decline.

Several times there was talk of demolishing it, until over-ruled by popular opinion. It presented its last performance in 2006, and has been used as a nightclub since; at the time of writing is being renovated, possibly reopening as a theatre for the 2024 season.

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27 Rambla

The Ramblas


Text © Dana Facaros & Michael Pauls

Images by Chabe01, Unknown authorUnknown author