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Cinemas & Theatres

Cinema

Venice is famous for its world famous film festival which is one of the best known in the world. It forms part of the Biennale and attracts some of the biggest and most important names from the movie world, so don't be surprised if you bump into the year's most lauded actor or actress! The Venice International Film Festival (Mostra del Cinema di Venezia) is held every two years in late August/early September at the Palazzo del Cinema on the Lido di Venezia.

The Summer Arena in Campo San Polo is an under-the-stars cinema that is open to movie goers during July and August. Unfortunately most films are generally dubbed, as is the Italian way. The best time to see films in original language version is during the September film festival.

Cinema Giorgione Movie d'Essai in Cannaregio is a modern cinema frequently showing quality movies as well as some of the Hollywood blockbusters. There are two screens, large and small, with up to three film screenings a day.

Circuito Cinema is a publisher and cine-club in Venice and organises a series of themed sessions and workshops. It airs original-language films which are generally classic or art-house.

Theatres

Venice's historical contribution to the world is undoubtable and here in the magical floating city there are still several historical theatres that are worth visiting even if you don't see a show!

Teatro La Fenice

The Teatro La Fenice is one of the finest historic opera houses in the world. The San Benedetto theatre had been an important opera house before it burned down in 1774. A legal dispute broke out between the managing company and owners which led to the theatre company moving to another site where La Fenice (The Phoenix) rose from the chaos of its destruction and litigation procedures. At the start of the 19th entury the theatre began building an ever greater reputation with theatre productions from Rossini and operas by Bellini.

Unfortunately disaster struck again in 1836 when the theatre was destroyed by fire again. It was quickly rebuilt and opened in 1837 and its success as a world leader in theatre production continued. Performances were again disrupted when La Fenice was closed during the First World War. On reopening, the world's greatest singers and conductors were attracted and in 1930 the Biennale initiated the First International Festival of Contemporary Music.

But misfortune was to strike once more like a relentless curse. On 29 January 1996 the theatre was destroyed by fire with two electricians later found guilty of arson. This time the theatre was completely destroyed and requiried complete reconstruction. After seven years, the theatre was reopened on 14 December 2003 with an inaugural concert of Beethoven, Wagner and Stravinsky.

Musica a Palazzo

The ensemble 'Musica a Palazzo' manages one of the most important gothic Venetian palaces in Venice, located in an intimate centuries-old theatre on the Grand Canal. The Palace Barbarigo-Minotto offers an innovative approach to Opera where you can enjoy a night watching the Barber of Seville, La Traviata or love duets.

Teatro Malibran

The Malibran handles some of La Fenice productions in a cosy yet exquisite 17th-century theatre. Located in the heart of the historical centre close to the Rialto Bridge, it is one of the best loved theatres in Venice.

Teatro Goldini

The Goldini was named after the city's greatest playwright, Carlo Goldoni, and was the main theatre in Venice when La Fenice was being restored. It is today considered the principal drama theatre in Venice. Beginning under the name of Teatro Vendramin di San Salvador, it then became the Teatro Apollo after restoration in 1833 and finally the Teatro Malibran in 1875. Along with Shakespeare and Goldoni, the theatre is used for concerts, ballet and more.

Teatro del Parco

Teatro del Parco is located in Mestre in Parco della Bissola, the largest city park on mainland Venice. It hosts musical and recreational events including theatre for kids, dance and music from October to June. It is easily reached with public transport and there are car parking facilities nearby.

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