Odessa Opera and Ballet Theater
Odessa Opera House was the first in Ukraine at its time of construction, in meaning and popularity. The first theater was opened in 1810, but in 1873 it was completely destroyed by fire. The city invited Viennese architects, F. Felner and H. Helmer, to draft a new building. It took nearly fifteen years for Odessa to rebuild the Opera House and it was opened on October 1st, 1887. In 1925 another fire destroyed the stage and unique curtain, and damaged the auditorium.
In 1955-1956 groundwater began to destroy the foundation of the building, and it took almost 2 years of construction work to strengthen the foundation. Finally, from 1996 to 2007 the theater was completely overhauled, and this time to last for centuries. The foundation piles were reinforced in 1800, which run into the underground hard rock. Now the opera house has modern air-conditioning systems, fire alarm and power supply, internal cell phone, security, and video surveillance. It was a complete restoration of the facade and interior. Finally, on September 22nd, 2007 the Odessa Opera House was reopened, no less solemn than the first time.
The Odessa Opera House is not only interesting for its architecture, but it also has a rich creative biography. The theater deserves much of the credit for the development of musical culture in Russia and Ukraine. The works of Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov, Eugene Ysae, Pablo Sarasate and others were performed here. Artists who made the domestic arts famous performed here. Here the great Fyodor Chaliapin, Solomiya Krushelnytska, Antonina Nezhdanova, Leonid Sobinov, Titti Ruffo, Mattia Battistini, and Eugenio Dzhiraldoni sang, and the first dancer of the world, Anna Pavlova, danced.