Mon-Sat 12 pm – 6 pm
Sun 2 hours before the first performance
- Neo-classical Renaissance theatre
- National Heritage Site
- In-house theatre company, Toneelgroep Amsterdam
- International Theatre & Film Bookshop
Neo-Renaissance theatre with a rich history
Smack in the middle of the city stands the glorious Stadsschouwburg, the crown of Amsterdam's theatrical landscape. Amidst the bustling tourists and jam-packed bars, this unique neo-Renaissance theatre sits regally in the centre of Leidseplein. Here one can enjoy established national and international acts, as well as more contemporary and progressive performances.
The building itself is reason enough to visit. Built in 1894, it was designed by Jan Springer of the prominent Dutch architecture society Architectura et Amicitia. In 1982, the theatre was named a national heritage site by the Dutch government. However, the theatre's history extends well beyond the present building on the Leidseplein. The theatre culture of Amsterdam started with the very first rederijkers or rhetorics in the 15th century. They organized themselves into rederijkerskamers which can be compared to modern day theatre companies. Back then, they didn't have permanent theatres in the city, so they improvised performances on top of carts during processions and in public squares.
After several fires and various location changes, the city theatre found its present home on the Leidseplein during the 18th century. The building has two halls: the baroque “Grote Zaal” (Great Hall) and the newer Rabozaal. Now, the Stadsschouwburg showcases a diverse programme encompassing drama, music, dance and theatre and has an in-house theatre company, the Toneelgroep Amsterdam (Theatre Group Amsterdam). It is also the venue for big theatre festivals such as Julidans and Holland Festival. The theatre also houses a restaurant and an international theatre and film bookshop; choose from a wide collection of books and films/dvds about theatre, dance, opera, musicals and cabaret available in several languages.
It's hard to resist the Stadsschouwburg's charm. Step into its golden halls, marvel at its architectural wonders and be enarmored with Amsterdam's lively theatre culture.