Lucerne Theater

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The Lucerne Theater

The Lucerne Theater (also known as the Lucerne City Theater ) is the only state-subsidized professional theater in Central Switzerland . It is a typical “ three-division house” - currently under the direction of Artistic Director Benedikt von Peter - with a music theater ensemble, a drama ensemble and the “Tanz Luzerner Theater” under the artistic direction of Kathleen McNurney. In addition, a puppet theater is attached to the Lucerne theater - but without its own ensemble.

The Lucerne Symphony Orchestra (LSO) is an important artistic partner for music theater.

With around 400 temporary and permanent employees (without LSO) in art, technology and administration, the Lucerne Theater ranks 61st among the largest employers in Central Switzerland.

Equipment, locations

The Lucerne Theater at night
The auditorium
Stage layout
The basement

The Lucerne Theater has 481 seats, which are distributed over the floor and the two tiers. In addition to the main stage, there is another, smaller venue, the basement in Winkelriedstrasse in Lucerne . The basement is used by all branches and is particularly suitable for small and experimental productions .

In the theater there is the stage with the usual ancillary facilities, such as artists' cloakrooms , make- up , props , the costume department, lighting , stage technology , sound technology and part of the administration.

The theater management, dramaturgy and public relations have been established in a separate building opposite the stage entrance.

Rehearsal stages, dance hall, fund and warehouse are housed in the newly built Südpol Luzern - a cultural facility that was officially opened in November 2008.

The theater workshops work outside of the house in Lucerne's Tribschenquartier.

The annual program includes around 20 productions, with the number of premieres in music theater and drama roughly the same.

The internationally active tenor Ramón Vargas was a member of the ensemble in Lucerne in the late 1980s.

In order to ensure long-term funding for the theater, the Lucerne City Theater at that time was removed from the responsibility of the City of Lucerne in 1995 and converted into a foundation in which the Canton of Lucerne , the City of Lucerne and several municipalities from the Lucerne area contribute. Birgit Aufterbeck Sieber is currently the President of the Board of Trustees.

Building history of the Lucerne theater

The name "Lucerne Theater" comes from the 1995/96 season, when the city theater was converted into a private foundation for the Lucerne Theater. The name “Stadttheater Luzern”, coined when the new building opened in the 19th century, has been popularly preserved to this day.

The theater play in Lucerne has a long tradition, which probably began with the mystery plays . After the comedy house became too small and the Jesuits repeatedly complained about the sacristy of the Jesuit church , the bourgeoisie decided to build a new theater building.

A stock corporation for financing was founded and the current location was chosen after a long back and forth. Louis Pfyffer von Wyher was the chief architect of the theater, the foundations of which were laid in March 1838.

In autumn 1839 the Lucerne City Theater was officially opened with Schiller's Wilhelm Tell . The auditorium was renovated again in 1866/67, and new safety regulations in 1870/71 made further modifications and installations necessary. It was not until 1873 that the entire building was given an external plaster.

A devastating roof fire on the evening of September 29, 1924 destroyed not only the upper floor of the house, but also a large part of the costume and decoration fund . The ceiling of the auditorium was also damaged, and the imposing chandelier fell to the floor.

A citizen vote called for the theater to be rebuilt, which could be reopened at the beginning of the season in 1926.

Thanks to a generous donation from Henriette Berghuys († 1964), urgently needed conversion and renovation work could be carried out in 1969/70. Among other things, the extension resting on the pillars in the direction of the Jesuit church was realized, which today houses the cashier foyer, the public foyer and parts of the costume tailoring.

In 1969 the theater workshop building was also erected in the Tribschenquartier in Lucerne, which meant a great deal of relief for the theater staff and created additional space.

In 1997/98 the house was again comprehensively renovated and modernized in color. The number of seats was reduced to 555 in order to increase the comfort for the audience.

In 2012, a renovation followed with a significant improvement in the comfort for visitors: the public area with new seating, structural and color redesigns of the foyers and optimization of the building services.

The Lucerne Theater is the oldest multi-branch theater in Switzerland that is still in use and celebrated its 175th anniversary in the 2014/2015 season.

Stage technical facilities

The stage has a net area of ​​around 12 m × 12 m, a portal width of 8.50 m and a portal height of (maximum) 5.50 m. The technical portal is permanently installed, the portal bridge can be moved horizontally. There are two sliding recesses in the stage floor measuring around 4 m × 1 m. The stage is equipped with a cord floor for quick scenic transformations . 17 of the total of 20 trains are manual counter trains and can only be operated manually. Two mechanically movable side pulls enable the installation of a classic alley stage made of black velvet. Two motor-driven and digitally controlled chain hoists, which can be used as point hoists, complete the theater's technical facilities. For the lighting technology , 3 skylights are built into the lacing floor, which can be moved steplessly. In the portal area there are two further trains (one of which is automatic) and the main curtain made of red velvet, which is usual for the theater . The stage area is closed off by a vertical iron protective curtain . The orchestra pit must be covered and uncovered manually for the corresponding performances . Due to the limited storage space in the house, a large part of the decorations for the performances have to be transported back and forth between the warehouse in the South Pole and the theater. Deliveries are made via a hydraulic lifting platform on the street side at a lifting height of around 3 m.

Theater directors since 1961


Web links

Commons : Theater Luzern  - Collection of pictures, videos and audio files

Coordinates: 47 ° 3 '2.2 "  N , 8 ° 18' 22.3"  E ; CH1903:  665 921  /  211429