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Theatre Database / Theatre Architecture - database, projects 5/11/17, 06:53

North Bohemian
Theatre of Opera and
Ballet st nad
Labem
Alexander Graf
alias Stadttheater Aussig, Town
Theatre in st nad Labem(1945-
1948), the Slovanic Theatre of
Bene and Stalin (May,June
1945), the State Theatre of
Zdenk Nejedl (1948- 1993)

Lidick nmst 1710/10


400 01
Carthalia, Aussig, Scribd, YouTube, bdAD
st nad Labem
Czech Republic
show on the map http://www.operabalet.cz/

Important events

1906 | Competition
A competition was announced at the end of the year 1906 with only architects of
German nationality allowed to participate. 42 proposals in all were submitted by
the closing of the competition, with the commission choosing 12 for the second
round of the competition. The highest evaluated was the project of Rudolf Krausz
with the second being awarded to the architectural office of Fellner and Helmer
and the third going to the design of Friedrich Kick. The design of Alexandr Graf
was originally chosen as a substitute.

1906 | Selection of project


On the occasion of the second session of the commission, the jury decided to
choose from the range of projects, for example, the progressive design by Rudolf
Bitzan as well as the more moderate design by Alexandr Graf, the latter of which
submitted a project to the commission for a building with a modern reinforced
concrete construction carried out, however, in the conservative Neo-Baroque style.

1909 | Opening
The laying of the foundation stone occurred on the 30th of March of the year 1908
with the building completed in the summer of the year 1909. The first ceremonial
performance took place on the 21st of September 1909 with the play Sappho by
Franz Grillparzer.

1934 | Reconstruction
The first adaptations to the theatre occurred in the year1934 with the introduction
of more advanced light technology and an automated heating system.

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1967 | Reconstruction
The replacement of the seats in the auditorium and the gradual enlarging of the
parterre was carried out. The interior paintings and gilding were also renewed.
The management of the theatre at that time pushed through the construction of a
costume storage area. The partial renewal of the faades and roofs also took
place.

1993 | Reopening
The theatre was reopened with a performance of Smetana's Bartered Bride on the
8th of October 1993.

80. 's 20. century | Reconstruction


A particularly catastrophic situation
View this page regarding the
in: English building led
Translate Turninoffthe
for:year 1984 to
Czech Options
further reconstruction work according to a design by the group of architects of the
Regional Architectural Institute led by Rudolf Berger. Work on the new annex to
the theatre at the southern side of the historical building was begun in the year
1987.

People

Alexander Graf |main architect


Rudolf Bergr |architect
Josef Zasche |architect - participant of the competition
Heinrich Karl Ried |architect - participant of the competition
Oskar Strnad |architect - participant of the competition
Rudolf Krausz |architect - participant of the competition
Ferdinand Fellner |architect - participant of the competition
Hermann Helmer |architect - participant of the competition
Friedrich Kick |architect - participant of the competition
Rudolf Bitzan |architect - participant of the competition
Franz Krau |architect - participant of the competition
Krajsk projektov stav |architectural studio
Otto March |jury member
Karel Gtze |jury member
Petr Men |painter
Eduard Felix Veith |painter
Stanislav Hanzk |sculptor

History

st nad Labem gradually became the centre of the chemical industry in the
second half of the 19th century. The town grew rapidly with the social demands of
the growing and prospering inhabitants beginning to gradually increase. The town
council decided to construct a town theatre at the end of the 19th century. Soon
after they found a plot of land for the building according to a recommendation by
the Viennese architect Hermann Helmer. It was a locale in the centre of the town
between the main post office and the school on the site of a filled in pond at the
western front of today's Lidick Square. A theatre commission was established for
the construction of the theatre which was consequently renamed in the year 1903
to the Theatre Construction Association. Its main task was to gradually obtain the
needed finances in which it was fairly successful. They were able to accumulate
one hundred thousand Austrian crowns over the course of a year and obtain the
commitment of financial assistance from the Association for Chemical and
Metallurgy Production, the town savings bank and the town brewery.
In the year 1906 the town council reached an agreement as to the size of the

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theatre with a capacity for 700 to 800 people. One of the most significant
requirements was the emphasis on a sufficient number of inexpensive seats and
fewer loges with a reference to the industrial character of the town. They also had
to keep in mind a solution to the problem of the narrow construction plot,
respecting the neighbouring already standing structures and the height level.
A competition was announced at the end of the year 1906 with only architects of
German nationality allowed to participate. 42 proposals in all were submitted by
the closing of the competition, with the commission choosing 12 for the second
round of the competition. The highest evaluated was the project of Rudolf Krausz
with the second being awarded to the architectural office of Fellner and Helmer
and the third going to the design of Friedrich Kick. The design of Alexandr Graf
was originally chosen as a substitute.
On the occasion of the second session of the commission, with the participation of,
for example, the theatre architect Otto March as well as the st town architect
Karel Gtze, the jury decided to choose from the range of projects. These
included, for example, the progressive design by Rudolf Bitzan as well as the more
moderate design by Alexandr Graf, the latter of which submitted a project to the
commission for a building with a modern reinforced concrete construction carried
out, however, in the conservative Neo-Baroque style. The jury particularly valued
the quality and balanced, in terms of layout, design with a well-thought out
communication and safety system in both the auditorium and stage parts.
Alexandr Graf already had at that time experience with theatre space which he
had acquired on the one hand at the studio of Fellner and Helmer where he had
worked over the years 1881-1888 as well as through his co-operation with Franz
von Krausz on the occasion of the construction of the Vienna Jubilee Theatre
(Kaiserjubilms-Stadttheater, today's Volksoper 1898). The theatre in Znojmo
(1899-1900) is also his work. Shortly prior tot the construction of the st theatre,
the City Theatre in Ostrava was completed, particularly close in terms of its
conception to the one in st. The author tended to reject Historicism, although
not completely in the case of the realization of the theatre in nearby Most (1910-
1911).
The commission for the construction of the theatre was obtained by the st
company of Alwin Khler which initiated work in the spring of the year 1908. The
laying of the foundation stone occurred on the 30th of March of the year 1908 with
the building completed in the summer of the year 1909. The first ceremonial
performance took place on the 21st of September 1909 with the play Sappho by
Franz Grillparzer.
The first adaptations to the theatre occurred in the year1934 with the introduction
of more advanced light technology and an automated heating system. During the
second world war the metal sculptural work of Pegasus and Genius disappeared
from the roof of the theatre.
More extensive reconstruction took place in the year 1967, with the replacement
of the seats in the auditorium and the gradual enlarging of the parterre. In all
probability the connection and unification of the amphitheatre space of the gallery
and balcony also took place at the same time. The interior paintings and gilding
were also renewed. The management of the theatre at that time pushed through
the construction of a costume storage area. The partial renewal of the faades and
roofs also took place.
A particularly catastrophic situation regarding the building led in the year 1984 to
further reconstruction work according to a design by the group of architects of the
Regional Architectural Institute led by Rudolf Berger. The renewal also concerned
both the interior and exterior of the building, the modernisation of the stage,
lighting and audio-visual technology. Work on the new annex to the theatre at the
southern side of the historical building was begun in the year 1987 and is

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presently connected with the original building through a glazed neck section. The
first part was, however, only realized involving the original practice room for the
ballet, the practice room for the opera troupe, and a television studio. The theatre
was reopened with a performance of Smetana's Bartered Bride on the 8th of
October 1993.
The original name Stadttheater Aussig was renamed to the Slovanic Theatre of
Bene and Stalin for six weeks after the liberation of st on the 8th of May 1945
only to have the management return to the name of the Town Theatre in st nad
Labem. On the 16th of June 1948 on the occasion of the visit of the Minister of
Schooling and National Education the theatre was once again renamed to the
State Theatre of Zdenk Nejedl. From the year 1993 the building bore the name
Town Theatre in st nad Labem with today's name being the North Bohemian
Theatre of Opera and Ballet.

Present state:
The theatre is a free standing building facing out on with its main eastern faade
on Lidick Square. It can be divided in terms of its ground plan into the eastern
part with the entrance bay, the auditorium part and the somewhat narrower
western part with the stage. The entire mass of the building is covered by a
system of Mansard roofs.
The body of the rounded bay with the entrance portico, jutting out in front of the
main eastern faade modelled with marked belt rustic work, serves to create a
terrace on the first floor with metal railings and candelabras supplemented by a
pair of amoretti. The first floor of the bay is articulated by a three part balcony
window with a window-head cornice decorated with horizontally developing
cartouche upon which sits a half-circular thermal window with a mascaron at the
top. The windows are framed by two high and in the bottom third fluted pilasters
with Neo-Classical capitals bearing up a markedly profiled main cornice. The
rounded corners of the bay are articulated on the ground floor by the side
entrance while French windows lead to the balcony on the first floor supported by
huge corbels. The monumental character of the faade is additionally supported
by the high windows of the side axes framed by pilasters bearing up decorative
window-heads. The central axis of the bay culminates in a gable in the form of a
polygonal cartouche between two vases.
The main modelling elements of both eight-windowed side faades are, first and
foremost, the protruding staircase structures at the 1st, 7th, and 11th axes with a
huge portal with side entrances. The rich stucco dcor here makes primary use of
vegetative motifs with the first signs of Art Nouveau expressiveness in terms of
the style. The rear (western) faade is articulated on the ground floor by a large
portal with double-leafed doors leading directly to the stage.
A diagonal staircase leads, from the vestibule with a transverse shaped octagonal
ground plan, to the balcony, consequently leading further to the gallery at a
slanted angle. This, along with the two side staircases on the level of the
auditorium and the stage, serve to confirm the jury's praising of the quality
accessibility system in the theatre. The appearance of the ceiling in the vestibule
of the foyer of the theatre reflects the reinforced concrete construction of the
building. The foyer, repeating the lay out shape of the vestibule, contains a flat
ceiling softened by side cavetti.
The spaces are decorated with Neo-Baroque stucco, gilded dcor which contrasts
with the geometric form of the metal light fixtures. The unified, in terms of
composition, interior of the auditorium is based upon a horseshoe-shaped ground
plan with the balcony and gallery designed in an amphitheatre form. Its spaces
are at present unified both visually and in terms of communication. The side and

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proscenium loges on the level of the balcony and the gallery have rounded
parapets with stucco dcor in the form of shells with the central three always
connected by a shared parapet, undivided by a pillar but united by a shared
portal, tracing on the level of the gallery the shape of the vault lunettes.
The vaulting of the auditorium is designed with three fields. The first two from the
stage, divided by vaulted belts, are in the shape of compressed arch. The vaulting
of the circular ground plan above the gallery and balcony is enhanced by the
stucco mirror in the centre with the main chandelier and ray-like stucco belts,
terminating at the base with two pairs of female hermes.
The entire space of the auditorium contains rich gilded stucco dcor with the most
predominant decorative motifs being shells with mascarons and cartouche with
geometric dcor framed by vegetable ornamentation. The belts between the
vaulting as well as the framing of the stage portal also bear evidence of gilded
stucco, crowned at the top with cartouche with the town coat-of-arms of st.
The original iron curtain was decorated with ornamental belts. The first painted
curtain has been replaced at the present day by a curtain with a motif on the
theme of Commdia dellarte by the painter Petr Men. The ceiling painting on
the theme of the hard-working nature of the st citizens ('Gewerbeflei Aussigs')
is the work of Eduard Veit. After the year 1993 the interior of the building was
enriched by statues of Bedich Smetana and Antonn Dvok by Stanislav Hanzk.
Sources and Literature:
- Mstsk archiv v st nad Labem, fond Mstsk divadlo, karton 617.
- Archiv stavebnho adu M st nad Labem, stavebn dokumentace mstskho
divadla, .p. 1710
- Archiv Severoeskho divadla opery a baletu, Dehner Jan , Divadlo v st po
roce 1945
- Krob, Ernst : Das Theater als Bauproblem in: 1909-1934 25 Jahre Stadttheater
Aussig - Festschrift; Aussig 1934,s. 10-11.
- Javorin, Alfred: Divadla a divadeln sly v eskch krajch; Praha 1949,s. 297-
298.
- Pekov, Jana - Trgrov, Jarmila: Severoesk profesionln divadlo 1945-1982;
st nad Labem 1987, s. 11-34.
- Eckelt, Gerda: Geschichte eines deutchen Theaters in Bhmen: nach
Theaterberichte aus dem Aussiger Tagblattvon 1909-1944. Band I.-III.,
Stuttgart 1992. Kaiser, Vladimr: steck divadlo 1909-1992; st nad Labem
1992, s. 10-25.
- Kaiser, Vladimr- Kaiserov Kristina (ed): Djiny msta st nad Labem; st nad
Labem 1995,s . 189-195.
- Hilmera, Ji: esk divadeln architektura; Praha 1999, s.71-72.
- elezn, Eva: Z djin divadla v st nad Labem, diplomov prce Univerzity
Jana Evangelisty Turkyn, 1999.
- Pral, Matj: Mstsk divadlo v st nad Labem, seminrn prce VUT FA,
2000.

Tags: Austria-Hungary, detached building, Fin de sicle, Neo-Baroque, prestige


building

Author: Ludmila Hrkov

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Ludmila Hrkov:
F. X. alda Theatre, Krunohorsk Theatre Teplice, Highland Theatre, Chamber
Theatre Plze, Municipal Theatre Mlad Boleslav, Town Theatre in Most, City
Theatre Kladno, Town Theatre Jablonec nad Nisou, House of Culture and Trade
Unions (DKO), Municipal Theatre of K. H. Mcha Litomice, Town Theatre, Town
Theatre Pelhimov, North Bohemian Theatre of Opera and Ballet st nad Labem,
Municipal Theatre atec, Town Theatre r nad Szavou, Alfa Theatre, City
Theatre Chomutov, Passage Theatre, National House

Translator: David Livingstone


David Livingstone:
DISK - Theatre of the Theatre Faculty of the AMU in Prague, F. X. alda Theatre,
Krunohorsk Theatre Teplice, City Theatre Brno, National House (with the Town
Theatre Prostjov), Town Theatre in Most, Zln City Theatre, Moravian Theatre
Olomouc, National Theatre, Estates Theatre, City Theatre Kladno, Jra Cimrman
ikov Theatre, Design Competition for the Han Theatre in Olomouc in the years
1921-1922, Town Theatre Jablonec nad Nisou, Tyl Theatre Kutna Hora, Castle
Theatre in Litomyl, Town Theatre, Ji Myron Theatre, Antonn Dvok Theatre, J.
K. Tyl Theatre Tebo, North Bohemian Theatre of Opera and Ballet st nad
Labem, Rokot Theatre, Municipal Theatre atec, Janek Theatre, Reduta
Theatre, New Stage of the National Theatre, Karln Musical Theatre, Brank
Theatre, Kaina Chteau Theatre, Alfred in the Courtyard Theatre, Stone Theatre,
Stranice Theatre, Semafor, Competition for the Design of the People's Theatre in
Moravsk Ostrava in the year 1921, Architectural competition for the design of the
Czech National Theatre in Brno, 1936-37, Kozel Chteau Theatre, Castle Theatre
in Mnichovo Hradit, Theatre Na Fidlovace, Centre for Experimental Theatre -
Goose on a String Theatre

Additional information
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