The first modern Theatre: Vicenza’s “Teatro Olimpico”

Would you like to know how indoor theaters were born as we understand them today? The city to go to is Vicenza, where the last great jewel, in terms of time, of the inimitable Andrea Palladio represented by the Olympic Theater, is located. It is easy to be amazed inside this marvel which is part of the heritage protected by Unesco, in front of a work that takes up classical and Vitruvian-inspired architectural and stylistic themes, but conceived in the middle of the Renaissance period.

It seems to be inside a Greek or Roman amphitheater, only this is inserted inside an indoor building, in which 95 characters from mythology or linked to the Olympic Academy stand out, the institution of which Palladio was part and that he commissioned this great work. Unfortunately, after having signed the projects, he was unable to see this masterpiece finished: it was his son Silla, following his father's notes, who allowed the conclusion of the work inaugurated in 1585.

On the 3rd of March of that year, at the first theatrical performance, another myth was consecrated in addition to Andrea Palladio: it was that of Vincenzo Scamozzi, the architect who created the wooden scenographies in perspective still present inside the Olympic Theater. They had to stay there only for the execution of the work “Edipo Re”, instead they are still there capable of leaving you speechless, in front of an optical effect that takes you with your gaze inside the seven streets of the city of Thebes.

The charm of the Olympic Theater, which can always be visited except on Mondays, Christmas Day and January 1st, is also associated with the context in which it is located: that of a city where Palladio's signature can be seen in the most representative works of the city such as Palazzo Chiericati or the Palladian Basilica itself in Piazza dei Signori.

Vicenza is at the center of both our A31 Valdastico and A4 Brescia Padova lines. To reach the historic center, the most convenient exits are Vicenza Est and Vicenza Ovest on the motorway A4. It depends where you come from… Ready to come and discover it?


A land to discover:

Food and wine: Baccalà and the “soppressa” of Vicenza, in addition to other typical products of the territory.

History: From the Euganei up to the Serenissima and the powerful patriciate of the sixteenth century.

Territory: The works created by architect Andrea Palladio are the envy of the world.