In 1756 the Bolognese Senate, thanks to Cardinal Lambertini's concrete involvement, assigned the task to design a new theatre to the famous stage designer and architect Antonio Galli Bibiena. Eleven years before the private theatre of Palazzo Malvezzi had been destroyed by fire and the public theatre "della Sala" was in need of restoration. The new facility was built on San Donato street (today's via Zamboni) on the area where the magnificent Bentivoglio palace, razed to the ground by rioting populace in 1507, had once stood. The original project by Bibiena, whose wood model is now visible at Museo della Musica, was reduced also for economic reasons following critical remarks by architects of Accademia Clementina (for example, A. Torreggiani and C. F. Dotti). Several adjustments were needed before the building could be completed: reduction of the proscenium, of the decorations in the façade, in the bell-shaped sweep, etc.. The theatre was inaugurated in 1763 with the new opera 'Il Trionfo di Clelia' by Metastasio with music by Gluck and stage scenes by Bibiena. A complete renovation of dressing rooms, the stage and theatre fittings was carried out between 1818 and 1820 by municipal architect Giuseppe Tubertini. In the 1870's the ceiling of the stalls was repainted by Luigi Busi and Luigi Samoggia, while Coriolano Monti worked on the renovation of the back façade. The front façade was instead completed only in 1935-6 by Umberto Ricci after fire had destroyed the stage and the curtain by N. Angiolini a few years before. The theatre is an independent body comprising, alongside theatre services, a historical archive, a library, facilities for choir singers and orchestra rehearsals.
Guided tours for small groups, organized groups and schools. The visits can take place on days and times agreed with the theatre. Reservations: reservations required - +39 342 0120430 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org