The Municipal Theatre is located in Cinelândia in the city center of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Built in the beginning of the twentieth century, it is considered to be one of the most beautiful and important theatres in the country. It is located in Cinelândia, downtown Rio de Janeiro. Inaugurated in 1909 during Pereira Passos prefecture as part of the architectural complex of the Rio de Janeiro redevelopment works and opening of Avenida Central, it has since its inauguration played an important role for the Carioca and national culture, receiving on its stage important artists, orchestras And ballet companies.
The building is designed in an eclectic style, inspired by the Paris Opéra of Charles Garnier. The outside walls are inscribed with the names of classic Eurocentric & Brazilian artists. It is located near the National Library and the National Fine Arts Museum, overlooking the spacious Cinelândia Square.
The interior of the theater is as luxurious as the facade, with sculptures by Henrique Bernardelli and paintings by Rodolfo Amoedo and Eliseu Visconti, the latter responsible for the majestic drop curtain, the frieze on the proscenium, the nave ceiling and the decorations of the foyer ceiling. The restaurant Assírius in the basement is peculiar in its impressive Assyrian decor.
The Municipal Theater of Rio de Janeiro boasts works by the most renowned Brazilian artists at the time of its construction.
Paintings by Eliseu Visconti, Henrique Bernardelli and Rodolfo Amoedo and sculptures by Rodolfo Bernardelli.
Eliseu Visconti is the artist with the greatest presence in the decoration of the theater, and all the paintings in the theater are his own: the majestic cloth of the mouth (the largest canvas ever painted in Brazil), the ceiling on the ceiling and the frieze on the Stage (proscenium). Also of Eliseu Visconti are the paintings of the foyer of the theater (ceiling and lateral panels), considered like masterpiece of the decorative painting in Brazil.
Rodolfo Amoedo executed eight paintings on the side walls of the “foyer” roundabouts, and Henrique Bernardelli was the author of the paintings on the ceilings of the two roundabouts.
The restaurant Assirius, in the basement of the theater, has the particularity of having a decoration in Assyrian style.
Opened in 1909, the Municipal Theater – linked to the Secretary of State for Culture of Rio de Janeiro – is one of the leading houses in Brazil spectacles currently chaired by Maestro João Guilherme Ripper. For over a century of activity, the beautiful building in eclectic style – whose architecture is a sideshow – has received on its stage the most renowned artists, great orchestras and national and international dance companies. It is the only Theater in the country who maintain three artistic bodies: a symphony orchestra, a choir and a dance of body, which is now headed by the first dancers Ana Botafogo and Cecilia Kerche.
Today, the Theatro Municipal mostly shows productions of ballet and classical music. In its early heyday, it featured only foreign opera and symphonic orchestra shows, especially from Italian and French companies. In 1931, the Municipal Symphonic Orchestra of Rio de Janeiro was created and celebrities such as Arturo Toscanini, Sarah Bernhardt, Bidu Sayao, Cheryl Studer, Eliane Coelho, Heitor Villa-Lobos, Igor Stravinsky, Paul Hindemith and Alexander Brailowsky highlighted the programs of the Theatro. Today, it houses the Petrobras and the Brazilian Symphonic Orchestras.