enczsksiplhudeitsvhrespt
/ enMain menu 
Navigation:  Theatre Database
EN | CS

Theatre in Dlouhá

Emil Sušický, Paul Sydow

alias Municipal Theatre for Young (1949- 1953), Theatre of Young Pioneers (1945- 1949), Prague Theatre for Young (1946- 1949), Theatre of the 5th May (1945), Prague Children´s Theatre (1935- 1945), Theatre of Jiří Wolker (1953- 1991), Theatre in the Old Town (1991- 1996)
history of the theatresupplementtechnical dataHistoric equipment

Important events

(detail)October 1927 | Architectural design of the building

(detail)12. 10. 1928 | Final building approval
Final building approval was granted on 12 October 1928.
(detail)4. 12. 1929 | First theatre performance
On 4 December 1929, The Great Operetta had its first performance in this theatre, and continued to perform there till the end of 1943/44 season
(detail)1956 | Enlarging entrance space
In 1956, the foyer of the theatre was expanded
(detail)1960 | Reconstruction of electrical installation
In 1960, the reconstruction of the control room and the modernization of stage lights and electro-acoustics were carried out.
(detail)1979 | General reconstruction
In the period 1972-1979, a general reconstruction of the theatre was carried out: the auditorium, foyer and other public rooms were reconstructed according to the design of Ing. arch. Miroslav Maxa. The stage was equipped with a turntable.
(detail)2002 | Restoration of the building after flood
The theatre was severely affected by the 2002 floods. The work to repair the damages caused by the floods focused mainly on all technical equipment (the repair of the turntable seemed to be useless) and the mobiliary with the aim to bring it back to the condition before the disaster.

People

Emil Sušický |main architect
Paul Sydow |main architect, interior designer
Miroslav Maxa |architect

History

The theatre is located in the basement of the house no. 728 in the Old Town of Prague on the corner of Dlouhá (no. 41) and Hradební (no. 1). The building plans dated October 1927 were drafted by Emil Sušický in collaboration with architect Pavel Sydow. Final building approval was granted on 12 October 1928. Originally, a cinema was planned in today’s location of the theatre. Upon the initiative of theatre entrepreneur Bedřich Jeřábek, the director of Uranie Holešovice, the plans were changed and it was decided to build a theatre hall. On 4 December 1929, The Great Operetta had its first performance in this theatre, and continued to perform there till the end of 1943/44 season. After the liberation of Czechoslovakia, the drama section of Divadlo 5. května performed here, and since December 1945, the National Theatre Studio under the management of Jindřich Honzl. The Municipal Youth Theatre, which was established after merging Prague Youth Theatre of Míla Melanová and Communist Youth Theatre of Václav Vaňátko, started its activities here in 1949. On 13 October 1953, the theatre was renamed to Divadlo Jiřího Wolkera, and in 1991 to Divadlo Na Starém Městě. The current name of the theatre has been used since 1 July 1996.

In 1956, the foyer of the theatre was expanded; in 1960, the reconstruction of the control room and the modernization of stage lights and electro-acoustics were carried out. In the period 1972-1979, a general reconstruction of the theatre was carried out: the auditorium, foyer and other public rooms were reconstructed according to the design of Ing. arch. Miroslav Maxa. The stage was equipped with a turntable. The theatre was severely affected by the 2002 floods. The work to repair the damages caused by the floods focused mainly on all technical equipment (the repair of the turntable seemed to be useless) and the mobiliary with the aim to bring it back to the condition before the disaster.

The auditorium has a sloping down seating area on square-shaped floor plan, and a slightly concave wall. This wall was built during the reconstruction in 1979 to close off nine boxes which were originally there. (They were replaced by director’s cabin.) There are 18 – 22 seats in 16 straight rows. The circle has a U-shaped floor plan. Its parapet has a concave profile with a sharp edge rising from its lower part. There are two sets of seats in the middle of the circle: four ascending rows with 19-22 straight seats; then, there are two more steps with 12 chairs and 17 tip-up seats behind the cross railing. Originally, there were 7 rows and a screening booth with one box on each side. However, a plan of The Great Operetta with no specific date shows 8 rows; and there were „boxes for foreigners“ with 13 chairs in each row on each side of the projection booth. Today, the space in the middle circle is closed off by a straight wall with three control room windows. In the circle, there is a row with ten chairs behind the parapet, and behind these chairs, there are six raised boxes. The original project included cylindrical boxes in proscenium on the level of the stalls in front of the arms of the circle. Today, these boxes are only on the level of the circle. They are filled with stage lights and sheltered by a crown-shaped roof. The upper line of the roof combines small s-shapes with teeth coming out in a sharp angle. The middle of the auditorium ceiling has a saucer dome which sits on a cornice decorated with plaster work. The circular contour of the cornice is highlighted with a ledge which combines a series of protracted curves and teeth coming out in sharp angle.

Similar decorative elements are applied on the marquise of the stage portal the face of which is also decorated with series of curves, s-shapes and sharp teeth. All these designs, including those on the circle floor plan and parapet, are expressive features of art deco style inspired by baroque. In obvious contrast to these features are (most probably original) grilles applied in various places of the space: they have strictly right-angled structure; curls are applied with economy, a curve appears very rarely, and a leaf is rather an exception.

The stage is 12m wide and 7m high in the front, and 13m at the back. The dimensions of the acting area: 10m wide, 7.5m deep. Upstage, there is a lift table with the dimensions 11x7,5m. The orchestra pit remains practically unused - it’s covered by the boards of the proscenium. The stage portal is 8m wide and 5m high. There is one iron curtain and one cloth curtain which can be pushed aside.

Literature, sources:

- Archiv architektury ÚMČ Praha 1.

- Javorin, Alfred: Divadla a divadelní sály v českých krajích, Praha 1949; I. díl, s. 201.

- Vlček, Pavel & kol.: Umělecké památky Prahy – Staré město a Josefov, Praha 1996; s. 456 (stať R. Baťkové a Václava Vančury).

- Šálková, Daniela & kol.: Dlouhých deset let; Praha 2006, s. 4-5 - zpracováno podle diplomové práce Od Velké operety k Divadlu v Dlouhé Markéty Jankové (katedra produkce DAMU, Praha 2005) a Encyklopedie divadelních souborů Česká divadla (Divadelní ústav, Praha 2000).

 

Tags: Art deco

 

Author: Jiří Hilmera

Translator: Zdislava Kratěnová

Additional information

No information has yet been entered

Add information

Name: The name will be published

Email: The email will not be published

Information: Please enter information about this theatre, at least 10 characters

sixminusthree=