Bolshoi Theatre

Moscow, Russia

The Bolshoi Theatre is a historic theatre in Moscow, designed by architect Joseph Bové, which holds performances of ballet and opera. The theatre's original name was the Imperial Bolshoi Theatre of Moscow, while the St. Petersburg Bolshoi Theatre (demolished in 1886), was called the Imperial Bolshoi Kamenny Theatre.

At that time, all Russian theatres were imperial property. Moscow and St. Petersburg each had only two theatres, one intended for opera and ballet (these were known as the Bolshoi Theatres), and one for plays (tragedies and comedies). Because opera and ballet were considered nobler than drama, the opera houses were named 'Grand Theatres' and the drama theatres were called the 'Smaller Theatre'.

The Bolshoi Ballet and Bolshoi Opera are amongst the oldest and most renowned ballet and opera companies in the world. It is by far the world's biggest ballet company, having more than 200 dancers. The theatre is the parent company of The Bolshoi Ballet Academy, a world-famous leading school of ballet.

The main building of the theatre, rebuilt and renovated several times during its history, is a landmark of Moscow and Russia. On 28 October 2011, the Bolshoi was re-opened after an extensive six-year renovation.

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Founded: 1825
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4.8/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Kiomars Nezhadi (2 months ago)
Although I didnt have the opportunity to see a play in this place and it was close at the time I met Russia, the exterior is fabulous, one of the best places to take memorable photos from pillar to roof's sculptures. . . I suggest you that the photographer's best position is in front of the fountain that all building will be covered in photo
Rivonia Bed & Breakfast Kelvin (3 months ago)
Five star attribution entirely for it's iconic status as an opera house, one star for it's management. We approached the ticket office only to be told "no tickets", no matter what dates or "when will tickets be available", within three steps of leaving we were besieged by a ticket Mafia from which we purchased tickets at enflated black market prices. So be prepared for this practice to achieve your dream, which of course is worth it.
RAVI KOUL (4 months ago)
One of the best If you are visiting Moscow, you are very likely to go to the famous Bolshoi theater. The visit can be done in two ways: Buying tickets online in advance to attend an opera or ballet.Take a guided tour in English to the historic building organized by the theater itself every Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Prices can range from 300 rubles for the cheapest location, up to around 20,000 rubles
Emily Naylor (4 months ago)
Stunning historical theatre. It just screams class and luxury, from a time when people would dress up for a night at the theatre. I was lucky enough to attend a performance of the Nutcracker on the main stage. And I was delighted to see that so many (not all) of the audience were dressed to the standard this beautiful theatre deserves.
岡部清子 (6 months ago)
I went on this famous theater during a three week trip including Russia and Estonia. I reserved tickets two months ago and I watched a swan lake. Gorgeous interior, ballet of elegant dancers, music. Almost every audience enjoyed fashion. It was also fun to see their fashion. I had a gorgeous time at the world's high-class theater.
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In the 11th century, this area was occupied by a Romanesque church, which was built there for foreign merchants coming to the nearby Týn Courtyard. Later it was replaced by an early Gothic Church of Our Lady before Týn in 1256. Construction of the present church began in the 14th century in the late Gothic style under the influence of Matthias of Arras and later Peter Parler. By the beginning of the 15th century, construction was almost complete; only the towers, the gable and roof were missing. The church was controlled by Hussites for two centuries, including John of Rokycan, future archbishop of Prague, who became the church's vicar in 1427. The roof was completed in the 1450s, while the gable and northern tower were completed shortly thereafter during the reign of George of Poděbrady (1453–1471). His sculpture was placed on the gable, below a huge golden chalice, the symbol of the Hussites. The southern tower was not completed until 1511, under architect Matěj Rejsek.

After the lost Battle of White Mountain (1620) began the era of harsh recatholicisation (part of the Counter-Reformation). Consequently, the sculptures of 'heretic king' George of Poděbrady and the chalice were removed in 1626 and replaced by a sculpture of the Virgin Mary, with a giant halo made from by melting down the chalice. In 1679 the church was struck by lightning, and the subsequent fire heavily damaged the old vault, which was later replaced by a lower baroque vault.

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The early baroque altarpiece has paintings by Karel Škréta from around 1649. The oldest pipe organ in Prague stands inside this church. The organ was built in 1673 by Heinrich Mundt and is one of the most representative 17th-century organs in Europe.