National Theatre (Budapest)

The National Theatre (Hungarian: Nemzeti színház ) in Budapest, named only Nemzeti, is the most important spoken theater in Hungary.

The history of the Hungarian National Theatre

The beginnings

The most important stage of the country often had to change their seat. Since the beginning of the 19th century, there was the idea of ​​building a Hungarian National Theatre. The great reformer and inspirer Count István Széchenyi was finally commissioned in 1831 by the Cultural Commission of Pest County to prepare a study. His published in the April 1832 book Magyar játékszinrül ( from a Hungarian theater ) advocated a major national fundraiser and the establishment of a corporation. Foreign stages should be studied as models. Széchenyi sat down in the wake of a prestigious building overlooking the Danube a - a corresponding plot was provided by Archduke Joseph also available. The further development Széchenyi but slipped. 1836 ordered the Hungarian parliament, although the construction of the theater. It was built on far less representative office. The Hungarian Theatre of Pest stood 1837-1908 út in the former Kerepesi, Rákóczi út today, compared to today's Hotel Astoria. Of 22 August 1837 to 1840 the simple building was called the Pesti Magyar Színház. After a financial crisis of the theater disappointed the Széchenyi sat still in a fair way for the theater - the Bratislava parliament declared the house a national property. Later, it got its present name Magyar Nemzeti Színház. Two legendary directors were Ede Szigligeti ( in his ensemble played from 1870 the famous Lujza Blaha ) and its director, Paulay Ede. Many Hungarian pieces were known on the stage of the former theater: Bánk bán by József Katona, 1879 Csongor and Mihály Vörösmarty Tunde, 1883 The Tragedy of Man by Imre Madách. In addition to the Hungarian classics regularly included works by Shakespeare, Molière and Schiller on the program. The actors and actresses of the century were Mari Jászai ( after which the square is named on the Pest side of the Margaret Bridge ), Imre Szacsvay, Ede Ujházy, Emilia Márkus later Árpád ODRY (according to him is the stage of the Academy of Drama named), Teri Bajor, Árpád Lehotay Tivadar Uray, József Timár, Ferenc Kiss.

The Theatre at the Blaha Lujza Square

1913 the old building was demolished because of fire danger. In its place was rented by the theater company from 1908, the stately, 2400 Visitors summary, from 1874 to 1875, built by the architects Ferdinand Fellner and Hermann Helmer Younger folk theater ( Nepszinhaz ). This today Blaha Lujza tér ( Blaha Lujza was a famous stage actress ), this building was, until 1964, the home of the National Theatre is, here, the theater experienced its heyday. Important directors of the time were Zoltán Ambrus and Sándor Hevesi. 1935 Antal Németh was appointed director. After the severe damage in the Second World War, the theater was renovated and opened in September 1945. Tamás Major, who succeeded this year Németh, remained until 1962, director of the National Theatre. A famous film director this time was Endre Gellert, of the works of Gyula László Németh Illyés and staged. Famous members of the ensemble of this era were Ági Mészáros, Lajos Básti, Ferenc Bessenyei, Ferenc Ladányi, Erzsi Máthé, Margit Lukács Ferenc Kállai, Hedi Váradi, Imre Sinkovits, János Rajz, Mari Törőcsik, György Kálmán, many are also known from the former films.

The traditional building which was even sung ( in an old song by Lajos Lajtai states: hêtre ma várom a Nemzetinél, ott, ahol a hatos megáll - At 7 clock I wait for you at the Nemzeti, where the six stops ) was because it was, according to the authorities of the construction of a subway line in the way, blown up on 23 April 1965. As a result, the National Theatre moved first ( 1964-66 ) in the Nagymező street, then from 1966 to 2000 the building of today's színház Magyar (Hungarian Theatre) Sándor Hevesi Sándor on the Square.

Actions for the construction of a new National Theatre

There have been decades of debate about the location and planning of a new National Theatre. As of 1983, there were numerous actions for a new National Theatre: first you could donate money in a account specifically for this, or buy special stamps for a good cause. The women's magazine Nők Lapja held on December 2, a charity gala evening, which generated a million forints. A emigrated to America Lady, Erzsébet Speter donated $ 20,000. In 1987, so-called "brick marks" ( Téglajegy ) issued with a par value of HUF 100, on the initiative of the famous Hungarian actress Hilda Gobbi. On the securities of the plan of a theater was mapped in the City Park. However, the campaign brought only 240 million forints, the calculated costs were approximately 3 billion forints. Slowly the topic National Theatre disappeared from the agenda. Later, came as a location the adjacent spaces Deák tér / Erzsébet tér, the Vörösmarty tér and the Millenary Park came into question. Erzsébet tér On was even in 1998 started the construction work, but they were canceled on the grounds that the noise of the subway station beneath the square could interfere with the ideas. The site has been transformed into a modern park.

The new building

After decades of debate was finally a new house in the Bajor Gizi Park (in the 9th district) directly related to the Lágymányos Bridge. The present building in IX. District ( Ferencvaros ) on the east bank of the Danube, so in Pest, is held in the post- modern style and is considered one of the newer landmark of the Hungarian capital. It was opened by the then Prime Minister Viktor Orbán on 2 January 2002. Some accused the then government, the construction works were between 1999 ( construction decision on 17 August ) and the election year was formally pushed through in 2002 and criticized the relatively modest capacity of the hall and the direct award of the contract by Regierungskommssär Schwajda a relevant relatively inexperienced architect. Proponents of the construction stressed that it would at least come to a solution to the decades- long festering problem then at least by the rapid realization of the project.

The National Theatre was finally built by the architect Mária Siklos, which on 14 September 2000 laid the foundation stone for the cultural center of the new Millenium city part. Since then, a new concert hall was erected in the immediate vicinity. The close to the Schauspielhaus route leading past a suburban railway line is to be placed deep in the medium term.

Stage technology and architectural features

From the perspective of the fountain in front of the main entrance of the richly decorated building evokes the association of a river steamer. Later the theater was expanded to include an open- air stage. With the surrounding park areas, the National Theatre stands on an area of ​​20,844 m².

The theater building can be divided into three parts: the central building of the big stage with the nearly circular auditorium and the studio stage, the outer part of the building to the public and the U-shaped operating part to the big stage. The actual theater is located on three floors, there are two glass lifts, and the two upper floors, you can admire the panorama of Budapest. In the 2nd, 4th and 5th floor are the rehearsal stages. On the 4th floor there is the sound.

The statues on the facade of the theater were created from designs by Imre Schrammel. Péter Raab Párkányi crafted the statues of the nine Muses at the entrance of the building. The landscape architect Péter Török designed the outdoor facilities. This includes the garden and the statue park. The park around the theater is an architectural complement to the theater. The gate to the park was designed by the sculptor Miklós Melocco. Access to the bank of the Danube and its promenade is however provisionally still blocked by the suburbs railway HEV - it was because of the Lowering of the railway line to no timely agreement between the government and the community.

The auditorium of the main stage for up to 619 spectators. The dimensions of the stage are: 24 m in width, 17.9 m in depth and 28 m in height. The main stage can be extended by a maximum of 3.60 m. There is a backstage of 15 by 15 m, and a 18 by 15 m large side stage on the left side direction, which is 7 m high. About the auditorium there is a costume warehouse. The studio theater is equipped with the latest technology, there is a 12 by 12 m wide, retractable plateau in the stage. The Studio Theatre is located at the entrance hall and the auditorium.