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Theatro Municipal

Watch a concert or a ballet at this century-old opera house, which glitters just as it did in the early 1900s, thanks to a painstaking 2008 renovation.

Experience the grandeur of early 20th-century Rio at the Theatro Municipal, the city’s main opera house. A neoclassical palace of marble columns, green onyx staircases and golden bronze statues, the opera house is as much of a spectacle as the regular opera, ballet and orchestral performances that take place here. See a show or take a guided tour of the newly refurbished interior.

The Theatro Municipal opened in 1909. Since then, it has featured thousands of performances, including appearances by Igor Stravinsky, Anna Pavlova and the world-famous Brazilian composer Heitor Villa-Lobos. It has also undergone several renovations, the latest in 2008 costing more than $64 million.

Before you enter, examine the marble façade, which was modeled after the Paris Opera. Neoclassical columns line the front and copper cupolas crown the roof of the building. Notice the huge golden bronze eagle, which stands at the center of the building as its highest point. Visit the theater at night to see the stained-glass windows on the front of the theater colorfully illuminated.

Head inside and explore the entrance hall. The main staircase consists of green onyx and the fixtures include pieces of marble and gold. Notice the two bronze statues as you walk in. These were designed by French sculptor Raoul Verlet. The statue to the left represents poetry, while the one on the right represents dance. Peek into the performance hall to see a century-old frieze towering above the red velvet seats.

For the ultimate in Theatro Municipal experiences, book seats to a ballet, opera or orchestral performance. Both the Petrobras Symphony Orchestra and the Brasileira Symphony Orchestra call the theater home, so be sure to catch one of their regular performances. Otherwise, visit during the day from Tuesday through Saturday and join a guided tour of the theater for a small fee. If you’re looking for an atmospheric dining experience, head down into the theater’s basement to the small restaurant fitted with tile mosaics in a Babylonian style.

Theatro Municipal stands on the north end of Cinelândia, the main square of downtown Rio. The metro stops in the middle of the square.


Guide to Exploring around Municipal Theater


Best Lodging Options Near Municipal Theater

See all 2,609 Properties near Municipal Theater
Hotel Atlântico Prime ¥1,834
Hotel Atlântico Prime

Hotel Atlântico Prime

Rua do Resende 87, Rio de Janeiro, RJ
     
    4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

    Located in Lapa, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Arcos da Lapa and Catedral de Sao Sebastiao do Rio de Janeiro. Consulate General of the United States Rio de Janeiro and Municipal Theater are also within 1 mi (2 km). Cinelandia Station is 16 minutes by foot and Presidente Vargas Station is 16 minutes.

    Américas Granada Hotel ¥3,116
    Américas Granada Hotel

    Américas Granada Hotel

    Avenida Gomes Freire, 530 - Centro, Rio de Janeiro, RJ
       
      3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

      Located in Lapa, this hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Arcos da Lapa, Consulate General of the United States Rio de Janeiro, and Sambodrome. Flamengo Beach and Museum of Tomorrow are also within 2 mi (3 km). Carioca Station is 13 minutes by foot and Presidente Vargas Station is 13 minutes.

      Hotel Atlantico Business Centro ¥1,753
      Hotel Atlantico Business Centro

      Hotel Atlantico Business Centro

      Rua Senador Dantas, 25, Centro, Rio de Janeiro, RJ
         
        3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

        Located in Centro, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Guanabara Bay and Consulate General of the United States Rio de Janeiro. Flamengo Beach and Museum of Tomorrow are also within 2 mi (3 km). Cinelandia Station is only a 4-minute walk and Carioca Station is 7 minutes.

        Alvim 1403
        Alvim 1403

        Alvim 1403

        Rua Álvaro Alvim, 37, Rio de Janeiro, RJ
           
          3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

          Located in Centro, this apartment building is within a 10-minute walk of Guanabara Bay and Consulate General of the United States Rio de Janeiro. Flamengo Beach and Museum of Tomorrow are also within 2 mi (3 km). Cinelandia Station is only a 2-minute walk and Carioca Station is 5 minutes.

          Lips Motel - Adults Only
          Lips Motel - Adults Only

          Lips Motel - Adults Only

          Rua Senadro Dantas, 46, Centro, Rio de Janeiro
             
            2.5 out of 5.0 Stars

            Located in Centro, this motel is within a 10-minute walk of Guanabara Bay and Consulate General of the United States Rio de Janeiro. Flamengo Beach and Museum of Tomorrow are also within 2 mi (3 km). Cinelandia Station is only a 3-minute walk and Carioca Station is 6 minutes.

            Hotel O.K
            Hotel O.K

            Hotel O.K

            Senador Dantas 24, Cinelândia, Rio de Janeiro, RJ
               
              3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

              Located in Centro, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Guanabara Bay and Consulate General of the United States Rio de Janeiro. Flamengo Beach and Museum of Tomorrow are also within 2 mi (3 km). Cinelandia Station is only a 4-minute walk and Carioca Station is 7 minutes.

              Studio na Carioca ¥3,895
              Studio na Carioca

              Studio na Carioca

              R. Sen. Dantas, Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro
                 
                2.5 out of 5.0 Stars

                Located in Centro, this aparthotel is within a 10-minute walk of Guanabara Bay and Consulate General of the United States Rio de Janeiro. Flamengo Beach and Museum of Tomorrow are also within 2 mi (3 km). Cinelandia Station is only a 3-minute walk and Carioca Station is 6 minutes.

                ibis Rio de Janeiro Santos Dumont ¥3,121
                ibis Rio de Janeiro Santos Dumont

                ibis Rio de Janeiro Santos Dumont

                Rua Marechal Camara 280 Centro, Rio de Janeiro, RJ
                   
                  3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                  Located in Centro, this hotel is within a 15-minute walk of National Library (Biblioteca Nacional) and Museum of Modern Art. Selaron Steps and Arcos da Lapa are also within 1 mi (2 km). Cinelandia Station is 9 minutes by foot and Carioca Station is 13 minutes.