The European Route of historic theatres

Theatre is everywhere in Europe. It is part of our civilization. But it is a fleeting art: the moment a performance is over, it continues to exist only in the memory of the spectator.

Nevertheless, there is one permanent expression of this art: the theatre buildings. Every theatre building tells us something about the time when it was built, the intentions of its builders, the relationship between audience and artists, the cooperation of the artists across all borders and the change of times. Furthermore there is a European aspect to all theatres: the architectural form as we know it today was developed in Italy in the 17th century and subsequently spread all over Europe. The theatre therefore belongs to the very few truly European types of building.
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To make it as easy for you as possible to experience this very special European cultural heritage, selected historic theatres are being connected up to form a European Route of Historic Theatres. The European Route consists of various part routes, each combining about 10 theatres, offering a pleasant journey of about a week.

In autumn 2007, the first part route was inaugurated: the German Route. Since then the European Route expands every year. Watch it grow and try the Nordic Route that will take you to unique historic theatres in Sweden, Norway and Denmark. Go on holiday in the south and visit the oldest theatres in Europe plus some very special private theatres on the Italian Route. Live like a prince and follow the Emperor Route to theatres of the nobility and the citizens in the Czech Republic and Austria. Learn everything about historic theatres in Belgium, the Netherlands and the UK on the Channel Route. Enjoy the Baltic Sea and the theatres in Poland, Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia along the Baltic Route. Discover the history of south-eastern Europe from Slovenia to Montenegro along the Adriatic Route or see the most intersting theatres in Spain and Portugal on the Iberia Route.

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Listen to history while you are following the string of historic theatres. See for yourself what other generations have thought, built and designed and what this means to us today. Find out how Europe worked. Enjoy one or more performances. Experience history in its most beautiful form.

With the support of the Culture Programme of the European Union