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The Impavidi Theatre in Sarzana

Sarzana (La Spezia), Teatro Impavidi, theatre boxes
Sarzana (La Spezia), Teatro Impavidi, theatre boxes

The Impavidi Theatre was built on the ruins of a fifteenth–century Dominican church and annexed monastery. The work was awarded to the architect Paolo Bargigli in 1807 and was concluded in 1809. Within the perimeter of the old church one finds the three–floor lobby and the oval audience hall. The stage and the arcade were built on the site of the former cloister. One can still see a frescoed lunette in the dressing rooms and a well located beneath the stage, traces of the earlier structure.

The building is an elegant synthesis in which eighteenth–century elements are in harmony with Neoclassical features and the remains of the fifteenth–century Dominican convent. The “horse–shoe” plan is typical of the eighteenth century, whereas the decoration of the parapets of the upper tier boxes and of the proscenium are elegantly Neoclassical. Three levels of theatre boxes topped by a gallery overlook the audience. The frescoed central vault features musician putti and is the work of Giovan Battista Celle.

The main curtain, painted by Maret and depicting Homer accompanying verses from his immortal poems on the lyre, is lost, as is the minor curtain, which features scenes of nymphs and fauns by Celle. The stage is equipped with a series of wooden elements that are probably original, such as the flies, the stairs and the galleries serving the stage tower. Frescoed ceilings are still visible in a few of the foyer rooms. In the entrance there is a large plaque dated 1809 on which one can read the Latin inscription: “Fingendibus moribus relaxandis animis virtutibus aemulandi aere collato extruebant. Impavidi MDCCCIX”.

Impavidi Theatre
Via Mazzini, 77
Sarzana (La Spezia)

Open for performances and cultural events