A compulsory visit on summer nights
In spite of its name, this open-air theatre does not date back to antiquity, but was built in 1929 for the Barcelona Universal Exposition on the site of an old quarry. This space is now the main site of the Grec Festival, which takes place every summer in Barcelona and fills the city with theatre, music, dance and circus performances.
Why visit the Teatre Grec?
Teatre Grec was created thanks to a stroll that the French architect Jean-Claude Forestier took in 1921 near to a Montjuïc quarry. ‘A good place for a Greek theatre’, he said upon seeing the site. Later, in 1929, the Teatre Grec was built there to celebrate the Barcelona Universal Exposition.
The architects Ramon Reventós and Nicolau Maria Rubió i Tudurí, were commissioned to undertake the work, and they were inspired by the Ancient Theatre of Epidaurus in the Peloponnese to use a stone wall carved from the quarry as the stage. The architects took advantage of the slope of the mountain and the remains of the quarry to equip Barcelona with a very special stage.
Access to the theatre is through an impressive early-20th-century green space, called the Amargós Rose Gardens in honour of Josep Amargós, the architect who undertook the first development project on Montjuïc Mountain. In 2009, they were remodelled by Patrizia Falcone to recover their original layout.
Now, Teatre Grec, which can hold up to 1,900 spectators, is the perfect place to enjoy an open-air performance on a summer night in Barcelona.
For the most curious of you
- Did you know? At the top part of the gardens there is a building, now a restaurant, which was the Music Pavilion in the 1929 Universal Exposition.
- Local’s tip: If you visit Barcelona in the summer, consult the programme of the Grec Festival.
- A must: To enjoy artistic representations in the open air.