Just west of the Cathedral in Gutenbergplatz is the State Theater for the Rhine Palatinate region. Its design is quite impressive, mixing ancient and modern that reflects its history. The current theater has an exterior that is Romanesque, with its curved arches and carved murals, but built in an unmistakeably 19th century building. All this surrounds a thouroughly modern cylindrical glass interior that was built in recent decades. The modern theater was built in the late 19th in the place of the original Roman theater existed nearly two millenia ago. The theater puts on all kinds of stage events, from traditional theater to opera, and tickets to all the events can be bought online at the link given below.
Located opposite the Gutenberg Monument in Gutenbergplatz, this theatre holds cultural performances in the centre of town. There's a good view of the Dom (St. Martin's Cathedral) from the upper floors, but I didn't get a chance to go up, which's a pity. Maybe next time!
On another level between the middle and upper foyers you can go out on a balcony for some fresh air and a view of Mainz and the cathedral.
Drinks are also served here on the balcony when the weather is nice.
This space at the top of the building was newly created during the remodeling from 1998 to 2001.
It is an elegant place to wine and dine, with of course a fine view of the cathedral.
In this photo supporters of the theater are having a glass of wine before the premiere, while listening to an introduction to the opera and theater schedule for the 2004/2005 season.
Here is the recently renovated middle foyer, where you can have a drink and stretch your legs during the intermission at the State Theater in Mainz.
The big controversy involving the State Theater this past year was whether the orchestra would survive or not. The state government had plans to disband it or merge it with an orchestra in Ludwigshafen, which would have amounted to more or less the same thing. After public protests it now seems that the orchestra will survive, but will probably be reorganized and reduced in size.
The General Music Director, Catherine Rückwardt, used to be a conductor at the Frankfurt Opera (Kapellmeisterin), and I am proud to say she was a guest one evening at one of my opera courses during that time. She is one of the few women in Germany to hold such a post, another being the young American conductor Karen Kamensek, who is General Music Director in Freiburg.
The State Theater in Mainz was first built from 1829 to 1833 and underwent several expansions and remodelings before being severely damaged by bombs during the Second World War.
It was provisionally rebuilt and reopened in 1951. A remodeling in 1976/77 was not very satisfactory, so from 1998 to 2001 the theater was shut down and was thoroughly overhauled and modernized. During these three years the opera performed in a temporary building on the outskirts of Mainz.
The building shown here is the Large House (Großes Haus) on Gutenbergplatz. The State Theater also has two smaller venues, the Small House on Tritonplatz, just around to the left, and the Theater in the City (TiC) on Spritzengasse.
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