State Theatre on Gärtnerplatz in Munich

Das Gärtnerplatztheater von Außen bei Nacht, Foto: Maren Bornemann
Foto: Maren Bornemann

The Bavarian State Theatre on Gärtnerplatz, known as "Gärtnerplatztheater", is considered to be the "people's opera" in Munich and is committed to the light muse: The theatre covers a repertoire from opera to operetta, musicals and ballet and has its own orchestra and ensemble. Since 2012/2013, Josef E. Köpplinger has been in charge as State Director.

Ensemble: Orchester, Chor, Ballett

Chefdirigent Anthony Bramall, Foto: Christian POGO Zach
Foto: Christian POGO Zach
The orchestra of the Gärtnerplatztheater comprises 77 musicians and is one of the most important ensembles in Munich. Chief conductor since the 2017/18 season is Anthony Bramall. The orchestra's repertoire covers a broad spectrum from baroque to contemporary music. With opera, operetta, musical and ballet, the orchestra masters all genres of musical theatre. The choir of the Gärtnerplatztheater currently consists of 44 singers. It is conducted by Felix Meybier. The third integral part of the ensemble is the ballet. Its members are mainly dedicated to contemporary dance. Since 2012/2013, Karl Alfred Schreiner is responsible for the ballet.

 

The long history of the State Theatre

Das sanierte Gärtnerplatztheater von außen, Foto: muenchen.de / Dan Vauelle
Foto: muenchen.de / Dan Vauelle

The foundation stone for the theatre building was laid in 1864. It was designed by Franz Michael Reiffenstuel, who chose a classicistic architectural style. But shortly after the opening in 1865, the "Actien-Volkstheater" got into financial troubles. The forced sale could only be prevented by the intervention of King Ludwig II, who made the Gärtnerplatztheater the third Bavarian court theatre.

In 1937, the theatre became the property of the Free State of Bavaria and was reopened as the "Bavarian State Operetta". During a bomb raid on 21.4.1945 it was so badly damaged that it was no longer possible to run the theatre until 1948. From 1952 to 1955 Rudolf Hartmann was in charge of the theatre. He was also responsible for the Bavarian State Opera. As a result, the Gärtnerplatztheater was increasingly used for opera performances. In 1955 the venue was officially renamed "Staatstheater am Gärtnerplatz".

Renovation period from 2012 to 2017

Rundgang durch das sanierte Gärtnerplatztheater, Foto: muenchen.de / Dan Vauelle
Foto: muenchen.de / Dan Vauelle

The Gärtnerplatztheater has been completely renovated und modernized between 2012 and 2017. The sanitary, ventilation and heating systems were renewed and the thermal insulation improved. Safety measures were expanded with the optimisation of the electrical installations and fire protection devices. Not only was the spectator house facing the Gärtnerplatz, including the stage tower, extensively renovated. Intensive work was also carried on the rear property between Klenzestrasse and Reichenbachstrasse.

Among other things, the theatre's new rehearsal stage, which was previously moved to Harlaching, is now located here. The accessibility of the entire building has also been improved - not least because all levels now have elevators. In total, the Bavarian State invested around 121 million euros.

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