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Klaipėda Drama Theatre is famous neoclassical style theatre built in 1857, its three facades are available for admiration to this day. It was from the balcony of this particular theatre that Hitler proclaimed the Anschluss of the Memel region. This theatre is also considered to be the oldest theatre building in Lithuania – it has been standing in the area for almost two centuries. Surely, over the years the theatre has had to withstand the test of time: it was built, collapsed into flames, rose from the ashes, was privatised and reconstructed until it finally acquired its present appearance.
Today the Klaipėda Drama Theatre is amongst the most modern theatres in the Baltic region. After its 2015 reconstruction, the theatre now boasts modern hydraulic machinery, exclusive sound and lighting equipment installed on the lower premises of the theatre, and an automatically operated stage which can move along with the stalls. It is a great place not only to attend the performances of Lithuanian creators, but also to learn about the unique history of the theatre, as the building houses the Theatre Museum which tells the turbulent story of this cultural establishment.
Klaipėda Theater Square is the heart of the city. It is a very popular gathering place both for the residents and the visitors of the port city. Klaipėda Theater Square hosts concerts, city fairs, and the Sea festival among numerous other events. The square attracts people like a magnet.
The square is best known for the fountain sculpture of Ann from Tharau with the bas-relief dedicated to the poet Simon Dach. Created and erected in 1912, the monument could not withstand the test of time, as, due to mysterious circumstances, it disappeared during the Second World War. Some theories speculate that Hitler wanted replace the monument with a statue of himself, others say that he had the sculpture removed because its back was turned to Hitler during his speech from the Klaipėda Drama Theatre balcony. Fortunately, with the initiative of Klaipėda’s residents, the monument was reconstructed in 1990.
Behind the sculpture you can find the Klaipėda Drama Theatre. Since the 18th century, the theatre has played a crucial role in the cultural life of the city. The building acquired its neo-classical appearance after it was reconstructed in the 19th century. Also, you can see the Klaipėda’s coat of arms is on the facade of the building.