The first stone of this majestic structure was laid on May fifth, 1873. However, it was a further 30 years before its doors were opened. On October twenty-seventh, 1903, the curtain was raised for the first time at the Juarez Theater. On stage: Verdi’s “Aida”; and Guanajuato was at the height of its fin-de-siècle splendor.
The theater was built on the site of the former Hotel Emporio and the Plaza de la Constancia, which in the eighteenth century had been the monastery of San Pedro de Alcántara, next to the Church of San Diego.
Begun by architect José Noriega and finished by Antonio Rivas Mercado, the theater is eclectic in style, with a striking neoclassical façade crowned by statues of eight of the muses. Commissioned by Rivas and the engineer Alberto Malo, each statue is an archetypal representation of one of the arts, such as epic poetry, dance, tragedy, and beauty itself. Below them, two bronze lions by the sculptor Jesús Fructuoso Contreras greet the public at the entrance.
The beautiful main hall, decorated in the Moorish style, has room for over a thousand people and is still used. Its stage – one of the main venues for the Cervantino International Festival – has witnessed performances by some of the most famous figures in theater, dance and music from around the world.
Why not take a photo in the elegant theater bar or the old Smoking Room, whose refined, classic furniture recall images of the lively gatherings and dances that once took place here during the golden era of the Díaz presidency.