Vígszínház-19th Century Architecture in Budapest
In 2010 i had the privilege to visit Vígszínház - or Comedy Theatre located in Budapest, Hungary. At the turn of the 19th and 20th century the theatre was a pioneer institution of Hungarian drama, and is one of the oldest theaters still operating.
It was built in 1896 and was designed by the architectural studio Fellner & Helmer. The studio was founded in 1873 by the Austrian architects Ferdiand Fellner and Hermann Helmer. Together they designed over 200 buildings consisting mainly of apartment buildings and theatres across Europe in the former Austro-Hungarian Empire from Switzerland to present-day Ukraine. They frequently collaborated with famous artists such as Hans Makart, Theodor Friedl, and Gustav Klimt.
In 1945 near the end of World War II, Vígszínház was struck by bombshells and the theatre company had to move to a different location. In 1949 the theatre was nationalized, having been previously operated as a private theatre. After the repairs were finished it reopened in 1951 under the new name Theatre of the People's Army. It then regained it's original name of Vígszínház in 1961 and once again became the main center of contemporary drama.
Vígszínház has an average of 350,000 ticket sales each year and is one of the most successful theatres in Budapest, Hungary.