Teatro Baralt / Baralt Theatre

On July 28, 1877 General Rafael Parra decreed the construction of the Maracaibo Baralt Theatre which was based on a design by Cuban engineer Manuel de Obando.

The inauguration takes place six years later. On July 24, 1883. It was an impressive portico formed by four Tuscan columns and a terrace protected by iron railings. In 1928, the President of Zulia, General Perez Soto Vicencio, orders and executes the demolition of the old theater. Four years later, he opened the new theater, designed by Belgian architect Leon Jerome Hoet.

Baralt Theater 1932, neoclassical architectural style, unlike the former, rather Arabic-expanded the capacity to nearly a thousand seats, including three levels of balconies, an audience inclined, a basement and an adjoining building for dressing rooms and bathrooms and a high scenario, with little mouth width and medium depth.

Stresses in this new stage the appearance of the interior, by the painter Antonio Angulo Zulian, who renowned journalist and art critic Sergio Antillano called “the first abstract artist in the country”, thanks to the Art Deco style which was gala at the ceiling or plafond of 540 square meters which formed the ceiling of the theater.

Rafael Maria Baralt

Born in Maracaibo, July 3, 1810 and died in Madrid (Spain) on January 4, 1860. Military engineer, political and polygraph (poet, historian, philologist, journalist, orator, essayist, critic and narrator). He used the pseudonyms A.A.A. Aquilino and Manuel Garcia.

Highlighted as one of the great prose writers of the Spanish language, was the first American to hold a chair in the Royal Spanish Academy of Language and first graduate of the Military Engineer Academy of Mathematics, Caracas, genesis of engineering studies in Venezuela.

Rafael Maria Baralt Foundation

Baralt Theater Foundation is a collegial body composed of representatives of the University of Zulia, Zulia State the executive, the mayor of Maracaibo, Zulia State Legislative Committee, the Center Rafael Urdaneta, Fedecamaras and the National Council of Culture.

Baralt Theater Curiosities

• Many parts of Baralt Theater, as the original box office balusters and exhibited in the Sala Sergio Antillano were leaflets in Peruvian gold by a goldsmith called restoration work in 1986.

• The seats of the Theatre is five centimeters (5cms.) wider seats than the average of all theaters in the world, on account of bodily characteristics of Zulia.

• Behind the arch of the front facade of the Theatre in its upper part is a mask which was conducted by workers of the building in 1932 in homage to architect Leon Jerome Hoet’s work.

• The curtain is a painting by Spanish artist César Bulbena, donated by the Government of Barcelona, Spain for the opening of the building in 1932.

• The floor of the Lower Chamber Sergio Antillano was designed and made by artist Francisco “Paco” Hung inspired by the mosaic of theater tickets.

• The first film screening in Venezuela was held at the Teatro Baralt, this happened in 1897, by Manuel Trujillo Durán, who projected these first images called “Boys bathing in the Lake Maracaibo” and “pulling teeth particularly welcome in the   Grand Hotel Europe. ”

• Baralt Theatre has hosted the most important artists of every generation.

In his scenario has been presented from Carlos Gardel, Mario Moreno “Cantinflas”, Teresa Carreno, the Bolshoi Ballet of Russia to its new generation exponents of Latin American trova as Daniel Viglietti and Mercedes Sosa until the end of the farewell tour of Latin America Marcel Marceau.

The most important theater groups and dance music of the region and around the country have been presented in this theater throughout its history.