9 of the Most Jaw-Dropping Theater Venues Around the World | Savoir Flair
9 of the Most Jaw-Dropping Theater Venues Around the World
by Savoir Flair 3-minute read March 26, 2021

"All the world's a stage and all the men and women merely players." - Shakespeare


Few experiences can rival the captivating allure and sheer delight that accompanies the world of live theater. As the adage wisely suggests, "Should monotony be your pursuit, cinemas would suffice." Yet, within the embrace of a live stage, the spectacle of actors maneuvering through a symphony of emotions unfolds only a few feet away, leaving one profoundly moved and inspired.

We appreciate how architects seem to let their creativity fly when dreaming up the next beautiful home for live performances. This is why we took it upon ourselves to round up the most beautiful theaters around the world, from China to the United Kingdom, Australia, and right here in the Middle East. Each edifice stands as a testament to the same artistic essence that animates the performers who grace their stages, a framework of beauty that thrives as a harmonious marriage of human creativity and nature's grandeur create the perfect mise en scène.


The Burgtheater

Vienna, Austria

The Burgtheater is the national theater of Austria. Its origins date back to the 1800s, moving to different sites over the years and rebuilt after being largely destroyed during World War II. It features an impressive facade decorated with figures of famous actors and playwrights such as Shakespeare and the inside features ceiling paintings by Gustav Klimt.


Khorfakkan Amphitheatre

Sharjah, United Arab Emirates

Standing as a breathtaking marvel where modern ingenuity intertwines seamlessly with classical architectural grandeur, the Khor Fakkan Amphitheatre emerges as a cultural landmark within the Emirate of Sharjah. Unveiled to the public with grandeur on December 14, 2020, under the auspices of Sheikh Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, the ruler of Sharjah, this amphitheatre has since earned its place of honor on the United Arab Emirates 10 dirham bill since April 21, 2022.

Nestled at the base of the majestic "Al Sayed" mountain and facing the serene expanse of Khorfakkan's shoreline, the amphitheatre spans a vast 190,000 square feet and exquisitely accommodates up to 3600 patrons, all while exuding an air of timeless elegance.


The Minack Theatre

Cornwall, United Kingdom

Precariously perched on steep cliffs, this open-air stone venue was built mainly by hand and is the work of female master builder and artist Rowena Cade. She worked on creating and improving the theater from 1929 until her death in 1983.

Over 250,000 people visit the Minack every year, with plays put on between May and September.


National Centre for the Performing Arts

Beijing, China

Known as 'The Giant Egg', the futuristic-looking National Centre for the Performing Arts was designed by French architect Paul Andreu. It’s a flat dome made out of glass and titanium, surrounded by an artificial lake that took five years to complete and was opened in 2007. The interior is home to three venues: an opera house, a concert hall, and a theater.

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Palacio de Bellas Artes

Mexico City, Mexico

Palacio de Bellas Artes is one of Mexico City’s most important cultural spaces.

The façade is a stunning display of intricate, white, marble topped off with ironwork domes, while the interior is home to murals from some of Mexico’s most famous artists, including Diego Rivera and Jose Clemente Orozco. It’s also home to the National Theatre, the National Museum of Architecture, and various other art spaces.


Sydney Opera House

Sydney, Australia

Completed in 1973, the Sydney Opera House stands as an iconic testament to architectural ingenuity and artistic vision, gracing the shores of Australia with its timeless splendor. Designed by the Danish architect Jørn Utzon, its distinctive sail-like forms harmonize with the surrounding harbor, creating a captivating interplay of design and nature.

Utzon’s plans for the interiors were never completed, as he left the project following a change in government. Instead, the inside was overseen by Australian architect Peter Hall. Home to multiple performance spaces within its hallowed halls, it’s a modern mix of concrete, wood, glass, and unusual shapes, all weaving a narrative that resonates far beyond its breathtaking façade.


Teatro alla Scala

Milan, Italy

One of the most famous opera houses in the world – La Scala – opened in 1778. The venue is steeped in musical history, from debuting operas by Giuseppe Verdi to having Arturo Toscanini as artistic director.

The neoclassical facade is striking, but it’s the interiors that really take your breath away. Extensively restored in the early 2000s, the main theater is a cavernous, sumptuous space of red velvet and gold accents.


The Winter Garden Theatre

Toronto, Canada

Built in 1913, the Winter Garden Theatre sits in the same building as the Elgin Theatre. They were Toronto’s top places for vaudeville theater, but both closed in 1928 when the genre fell out of favor – only to reopen after extensive restorations in 1989.

The Winter Garden Theatre is an Instagrammer’s dream, as the ceiling is covered with dangling dried leaves, and the walls are painted with nature-inspired murals.


Palais Garnier

Paris, France

A French national monument since 1923, the Palais Garnier was originally built for the Paris Opera at the behest of Emperor Napoleon III in 1865. It is widely considered the most famous opera house in the world due mainly to it being the setting of Gaston Leroux’s 1910 novel The Phantom of the Opera. While the novel (and subsequent musical adaptations) itself is a literary masterpiece, the architecture and design of the Palais Garnier is largely considered a masterful work of art in and of itself. 

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