NUMBER 2 — LVIV OPERA HOUSE
The Lviv Opera House is an architectural gem of Lviv, built in the Neo-Renaissance style in 1901, and one of the most beautiful theatres in Europe.Constructed at the beginning of the 20th century, designed by architect Zygmunt Gorgolewski, the Grand Theatre in Lviv has been compared to the Paris and Vienna opera houses. Standing in front of the magnificent façade of this marvellous building, one can feel the overwhelming power of art, its eternity in contrast with the transience of human life. This building comprises various European architectural styles fashioned in all their lavishness.
The façade forms are very complicated and diverse: columns, balustrades, and niches filled with allegorical sculptures. Statues of eight muses rise above the main cornice of the façade, and above them stands the grand ten-figure composition of The Joys and Miseries of Life. The fronton above is completed with a sculptural triad of the winged bronze figures of the genii of Drama, Comedy and Tragedy, and in the centre stands Glory with a gold palm branch in her hand. These sculptures were created by the hands of the outstanding Lviv artists Popiel, Baroncz, and Viytovych.
The interior of the Lviv Opera House is no less amazing than the exterior. The internal decoration is gilded (with a few kilograms of gold), adorned with different-coloured marble, decorative paintings, and sculptures. The four-circled lyre-shaped hall accommodates over a thousand people. Embellishing the stage, the decorative curtain Parnassus (1900), painted by Henryk Siemiradzki, represents an allegorical image of the meaning of life in the Parnassus figures. The hall of the Lviv Opera House is remarkable for its perfect acoustics. On offer are performances by celebrated opera and ballet troupes of Ukraine as well as distinguished guest performers from abroad. The Lviv Opera House is the host venue for the recently revived Vienna Balls.