The Bolshoi Theatre began its life as the private theatre of the Moscow prosecutor Prince Pyotr Urusov. On 28 March 1776, Empress Catherine II signed and granted the Prince the 'privilege' of organizing theatre performances, masquerades, balls and other forms of entertainment for a period of ten years. It is from this date that Moscow's Bolshoi Theatre traces its history. The Theatre's first building was erected on the right bank of the River Neglinka. It stood on Petrovka Street, whence the Theatre derived its name Petrovsky (it was subsequently to be called the Old Petrovsky Theatre). The Theatre opened on 30 December 1780. The opening performance consisted of a solemn prologue 'The Wanderers' written by Alexander Ablesimov and a big pantomime ballet The Magic School, produced by Leopold Paradis to music by Joseph Starzer. Later on the Theatre repertoire consisted for the most part of Russian and Italian comic operas with ballet interludes, and separate ballets.
1 Theatre Square
Russian Federation - Europe