Visiting Romea Theatre
The Romea Theatre in Murcia is the main theatre in the Region of Murcia and one of the most important in the country. A monument with 150 years of history and many legends.
It was inaugurated by Queen Elizabeth II in 1862
Located in the central Plaza de Julián Romea, it was originally called the Teatro de los Infantes, and on 26 October it opened its doors with a performance of Ventura de la Vega's play El hombre del mundo, performed by Julián Romea, one of the greatest glories of national theatre at the time and whose name the theatre would later adopt.
The new building replaced the Teatro del Toro, located near the Plaza de Ceballos, where comedies were performed for almost two centuries.
The theatre suffered two dreadful fires between 1877 and 1899
In 1877 it suffered a dreadful fire, and its reconstruction was inaugurated in 1880. Just 19 years later, the theatre suffered another fire (in 1899), and the same architect was used as on the previous occasion, the architect Justo Millán. Thus, the current external appearance corresponds to the reconstruction of 1880, while the interior is due to the last of the interventions after the fire of 1899. Important milestones in the theatre's history were the various premieres of plays by Jacinto Benavente, which were attended by the author, or the performance in 1933 of the university theatre La Barraca, directed by Federico García Lorca.
In 1990 it was declared an Asset of Cultural Interest
In the 1980s, the Romea underwent a refurbishment and was reopened by Queen Sofia on 7 February 1988. In 1990 it was declared an Asset of Cultural Interest. Years later it underwent another refurbishment process, both exterior and interior, and was reopened in 2012.
Of neoclassical inspiration, the theatre's monumental façade is characterised by an eclectic style. Inside, the ceiling paintings by Antonio de la Torre and Inocencio Medina stand out, representing the coronation of Julián Romea by the muses and the offering of a coat of arms of the city to the actor and poet.
In addition to the façade, the fabulous stalls and the hall of mirrors are also worth mentioning
The auditorium is in the shape of a horseshoe, with a stalls area surrounded by stalls, three levels of boxes and three levels of upper tiers. The curtain, which was a gift from María Guerrero, represents Music, Poetry and Drama.
The hall of mirrors, located on the first floor, was a resting place for the gentlemen who came to enjoy the theatrical performances of the day in the 19th century.
A place marked by legend
It is said that the Romea Theatre is a place marked by legend as the theatre sits on a former Dominican monks' cemetery. Without any historical basis, the story goes that a friar of this congregation cast a curse: the theatre would burn down three times. So far, coincidence or omen, the Romea has suffered two fires. The supposed conspiracy of the Dominican monk claimed that the third would take place when its capacity was full. Since then, an usher at the theatre has been in possession of a ticket before the start of each performance, so that the theatre's capacity would not be filled and the third fire would never take place.