Festival of classical theatre – Roman Theatre in Malaga


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roman phorum

After 2.000 years being built, we have at last a classic theatre season at the Roman theatre in Malaga, which hasn’t been held since being abandoned at the IVth century of this era. The program is very interesting, with plays already seen in other major venues, including comedies and tragedies. This is something people from this city were reclaiming for too long, and among them, our Malaga-born actor Antonio Banderas.

The program is going to be played in three different Roman theatres, the one in Italica (Santiponce, Sevilla), Baelo Claudia (Bolonia, Tarifa) and this one of Malaga. The play,  together with the scenery, makes it one of the best options of things to do in Malaga these days.

It is funny how these classical plays are still up to date. Their story line could be perfectly placed at present time. It looks like society and the way humankind behaves hasn’t changed so much in thousands of years. In fact, they still play them at Rome, as you may have the fortune to see if you walk down through the Via dei Fori Imperiali.

Roman theatre in Malaga
Stage getting ready for playing, Roman theatre

But the fact of these plays being played in Malaga is an achievement long desired. This has to do with the curious history of our Roman theatre. It got abandoned at the IVth century. After that, it was buried by the debris from the mountain of the Alcazaba. It even got lost in the memory of the citizens, as at the middle of the last century, it was still underground.

A funny twist of fortune made politics decide then to build a House of Culture right on top of part of the scenery and the seats from the Roman theatre. A Roman theatre? They couldn’t believe what they were seeing with their very own eyes. But public institutions decided that a bunch of stones were really not worthy. So they hided the monument, again! It looked like a Roman farce was being played over and over again over the same place.  Finally some cultural lovers’ associations started to claim and get back our legacy. Their proposal was not only for visiting, but also for enjoying plays.

roman theatre malaga
Building entrance to the Roman theatre in Malaga

They finally got it dug out, and it was no more than 20 years ago that the House of Culture was demolished. Since then, the monument has been opened to the public and can be enjoyed by all. And this very first season of classical plays at the Roman theatre is just the cherry on the cake.

Here in Voilà Málaga we are very proud for the hard work made for finally getting this magical space to come alive. And hopefully this will be the first in many future seasons at the theatre. Let it will be.

Roman theatre in Malaga
Normal view of the Roman theatre in Malaga (no stage set up)

The plays are in Spanish. Anyway, the monument is worth a visit when plays are not being held. In fact, this is one of our main points at our Le Grand Tour, where we explain in detail the fascinating history of this monument lost in time. Some old pictures will leave you jaw-dropped at our tour, and a special one with our famous actor. In fact, he is so in love with his home city that recently bought a penthouse with lovely views to the Roman theatre, so he will get the chance to watch the plays for free! Well, as they say, some guys have all the luck. So please, rise the curtains!

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