Donizetti Theatre • • Visit Bergamo

Donizetti Theatre

Description

The Teatro Donizetti covers a total area of 3200 square meters. The hall’s dimensions respect the original 1786 design: it measures 360 square meters and it’s able to seat 532 people. There are 120 boxes, divided into three tiers, totalling 1154 seats.

It’s easy to understand how magnificent this building is and how astonished the Bergamo citizens were as they saw it, in an age when there only were small and temporary wooden theatres.

An enormous and sparkling chandelier, with 78 lamps, hangs from the middle of the ceiling, while other sources light up the stage.

Due to its sound harmony and distribution, the theatre is considered one of the best ones in Italy.

Originally named “Riccardi” after its maker, this Theatre is mostly renown as the place where Donizetti’s operas (more than 70!) were spread and appreciated by his fellow citizens.

Try to imagine the emotion experienced by Donizetti in theatre, when the audience assisting to the opera “L’esule di Roma – The exile from Rome”, gave a sincere and warm ovation. This happened in 1840: Donizetti would eventually die of disease in Bergamo a few years later, in his hometown, in 1848.


Donizetti’s most popular and worldwide-performed operas are L’elisir d’amore, Lucia di Lammermoor and Don Pasquale. Also La figlia del reggimento, la Favorita, Maria Stuarda, Anne Bolena, Lucrezia Borgia and Roberto Devereux are frequently staged.

The origins.

The Teatro Riccardi was built in 1791, featuring a plastered façade and a small portico, very different from today. An arson destroyed it in 1798, so it was rebuilt and opened back in 1800.

The history.

In 1897, during the 100th anniversary of Gaetano Donizetti’s birth, the Teatro Riccardi took the name of the famous composer: it also underwent several works that led to its current look. 

During the Twenties, the centuries-old shacks of the Fabbrica della Fiera (the “Trade Fair Factory”) were demolished and replaced by the impressive palaces you can still admire around the theatre, designed by the architect Piacentini.

After the enlargement and refurbishing works started in 1958, in 1964 the renovated theatre started a new season of great success.

In 1966 the Municipality obtained the exclusive management of the theatre.
In 1968 the Donizetti was included in the list of the “Teatri di tradizione – Tradition Theatres”, as an acknowledgment of its cultural identity.

In 1982 the Festival “Donizetti e il suo tempo – Donizetti and his time” was created, an event aiming to study and revaluate the great musician.

The new foyer was inaugurated in 1992 during the “Festival donizettiano”: it also hosts meetings, concerts and happenings.


Today.

Besides the Doremix – Opera and Ballet Season, the Teatro Donizetti also hosts a prominent and popular theatre season, as well as the contemporary plays of “Altri Percorsi” and other numerous initiatives such as the International Festival “Bergamo Jazz” and the Operetta season.

Moreover, the mayor city theatre is also the venue of the prestigious International Piano Festival of Brescia and Bergamo, organized by the Ente Festival Pianistico (“Piano Festival Organization”).

Out of curiosity

Giuseppe Verdi’s Ernani debuted in the Theatre in 1844. The performance, curated by Verdi himself, was a success: the theatre was crowded with numerous renowned artists of the time. In 1847, the Teatro Riccardi hosted a memorable performance of the opera I Lombardi alla prima Crociata, featuring a very long ovation after the famous chorale “O Signore dal tetto natio”, the expression of every people’s deep desire for freedom.

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The Teatro Donizetti covers a total area of 3200 square meters. The hall’s dimensions respect the original 1786 design: it measures 360 square meters and it’s able to seat 532 people. There are 120 boxes, divided into three tiers, totalling 1154 seats.

It’s easy to understand how magnificent this building is and how astonished the Bergamo citizens were as they saw it, in an age when there only were small and temporary wooden theatres.

An enormous and sparkling chandelier, with 78 lamps, hangs from the middle of the ceiling, while other sources light up the stage.

Due to its sound harmony and distribution, the theatre is considered one of the best ones in Italy.

Originally named “Riccardi” after its maker, this Theatre is mostly renown as the place where Donizetti’s operas (more than 70!) were spread and appreciated by his fellow citizens.

Try to imagine the emotion experienced by Donizetti in theatre, when the audience assisting to the opera “L’esule di Roma – The exile from Rome”, gave a sincere and warm ovation. This happened in 1840: Donizetti would eventually die of disease in Bergamo a few years later, in his hometown, in 1848.


Donizetti’s most popular and worldwide-performed operas are L’elisir d’amore, Lucia di Lammermoor and Don Pasquale. Also La figlia del reggimento, la Favorita, Maria Stuarda, Anne Bolena, Lucrezia Borgia and Roberto Devereux are frequently staged.

The origins.

The Teatro Riccardi was built in 1791, featuring a plastered façade and a small portico, very different from today. An arson destroyed it in 1798, so it was rebuilt and opened back in 1800.

The history.

In 1897, during the 100th anniversary of Gaetano Donizetti’s birth, the Teatro Riccardi took the name of the famous composer: it also underwent several works that led to its current look. 

During the Twenties, the centuries-old shacks of the Fabbrica della Fiera (the “Trade Fair Factory”) were demolished and replaced by the impressive palaces you can still admire around the theatre, designed by the architect Piacentini.

After the enlargement and refurbishing works started in 1958, in 1964 the renovated theatre started a new season of great success.

In 1966 the Municipality obtained the exclusive management of the theatre.
In 1968 the Donizetti was included in the list of the “Teatri di tradizione – Tradition Theatres”, as an acknowledgment of its cultural identity.

In 1982 the Festival “Donizetti e il suo tempo – Donizetti and his time” was created, an event aiming to study and revaluate the great musician.

The new foyer was inaugurated in 1992 during the “Festival donizettiano”: it also hosts meetings, concerts and happenings.


Today.

Besides the Doremix – Opera and Ballet Season, the Teatro Donizetti also hosts a prominent and popular theatre season, as well as the contemporary plays of “Altri Percorsi” and other numerous initiatives such as the International Festival “Bergamo Jazz” and the Operetta season.

Moreover, the mayor city theatre is also the venue of the prestigious International Piano Festival of Brescia and Bergamo, organized by the Ente Festival Pianistico (“Piano Festival Organization”).

Out of curiosity

Giuseppe Verdi’s Ernani debuted in the Theatre in 1844. The performance, curated by Verdi himself, was a success: the theatre was crowded with numerous renowned artists of the time. In 1847, the Teatro Riccardi hosted a memorable performance of the opera I Lombardi alla prima Crociata, featuring a very long ovation after the famous chorale “O Signore dal tetto natio”, the expression of every people’s deep desire for freedom.