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Squares and Avenues of St.Petersburg - Theater Square

One of the oldest squares of St.Petersburg, the modern Theater square was originally named Carousel square because of the round amphitheaters, built for equestrian shows. It was a square of a variety entertainments for the citizens – people could see there comedy performances, visit impressive show booths or try a number of carousels and swings.

In 1775 – 1783 the largest theater in Europe by that time was mounted on the square by the architect A. Rinaldi. The Stone (Kamenny) theater gave the name to the square, but it was called Theater Square officially only in 1810s. After several reconstructions the building of the Kamenny theater was enlarged and renovated for the purpose of St.Petersburg Concervatory - the oldest Russian higher educational musical institute, founded in 1862.

During the times of Emperor Nicholas I reign on the opposite side of the square was created a Theater – Circus, but after the fire of 1859 the theater was restored to the Mariinsky theater., named after the empress Maria Alexandrovna.

The exteriors of the Mariinsky Theater were redesigned several times and the modern luxurious facades were mostly created by the architect Shreter in the end of 19th century. The interiors of the theater are preserved from the 19th century with all the details.

In the center of the square was mounted the monument to composer M. Glinka, but it was removed soon from the square to open the wonderful view to St.Nicholas (Nikolsky) Naval Cathedral and to ease the increasing traffic. 

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