Theater des Westens in Berlin

Thursday, 14 March 2024 - 11:00 am (CET/MEZ) Berlin | Author/Destination:
Category/Kategorie: General, Berlin, Opera Houses, Theaters, Libraries
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© flickr.com - Sergey Galyonkin/cc-by-sa-2.0

© flickr.com – Sergey Galyonkin/cc-by-sa-2.0

The Theater des Westens (Theatre of the West) is one of the most famous theatres for musicals and operettas in Berlin, Germany, located at Kantstraße 10–12 in Charlottenburg. It was founded in 1895 for plays. The present house was opened in 1896 and dedicated to opera and operetta. Enrico Caruso made his debut in Berlin here, and the Ballets Russes appeared with Anna Pavlova. In the 1930s it was run as the Volkstheater Berlin. After World War II it served as the temporary opera house of Berlin, the Städtische Oper (Municipal Opera). In 1961 it became the first theatre in Germany to show musicals. Since then it has become the “German equivalent of Broadway extravaganzas”, putting on plays and musical comedies.

When the opera was moved to a new building in 1961, the Theater des Westens specialised in operettas and the new musical. The opening and first musical production was Loewe’s My Fair Lady on 1 October 1961, This first performance of the work in German was conducted by Franz Allers who had already conducted the world premiere, the leading roles were performed by Karin Hübner and Paul Hubschmid.

© A.Savin/cc-by-sa-3.0 © flickr.com - Sergey Galyonkin/cc-by-sa-2.0 © Hendric Stattmann/cc-by-sa-3.0 © MenkinAlRire/cc-by-sa-4.0 © Pedelecs/cc-by-sa-3.0
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© flickr.com - Sergey Galyonkin/cc-by-sa-2.0
In 1978, the stage technology was improved. In 1981, a restoration of the interior was begun according to the architectural plans of Bernhard Sehring, the facade was restored in 1988. From 1984, Götz Friedrich was intendant and Helmut Baumann artistic director. They concentrated on musicals and were successful with Guys and Dolls and La Cage aux Folles. In 1988 Friedrich staged Porgy and Bess with an “all black-opera”. In a united Germany, the theatre faced strong competition and had difficulties in staging an attractive program.

On 24 September 2002, the Senate of Berlin agreed to sell the theatre to Stage Entertainment, while the ownership of the building itself remained in the city. Renovations which began in January 2003 were estimated to have cost 10 million Euros. On 26 September 2003 the theatre opened again with Les Misérables. Stage Entertainment has no ensemble but presents productions of German and international companies.

Read more on VisitBerlin.de – Theater des Westens and Wikipedia Theater des Westens (Smart Traveler App by U.S. Department of State - Weather report by weather.com - Global Passport Power Rank - Travel Risk Map - Democracy Index - GDP according to IMF, UN, and World Bank - Global Competitiveness Report - Corruption Perceptions Index - Press Freedom Index - World Justice Project - Rule of Law Index - UN Human Development Index - Global Peace Index - Travel & Tourism Competitiveness Index). Photos by Wikimedia Commons. If you have a suggestion, critique, review or comment to this blog entry, we are looking forward to receive your e-mail at comment@wingsch.net. Please name the headline of the blog post to which your e-mail refers to in the subject line.




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