Places I’d Like to Visit: The Karl Marx Theatre, Havana, Cuba

The Karl Marx Theatre (Spanish: Teatro Karl Marx) is a theatre in Havana, Cuba, formerly known as the Teatro Blanquita, and renamed after the Cuban Revolution of 1959. The venue has an enormous auditorium, with seating capacity of 5500 people, and is generally used for big shows by stars from Cuba and abroad. Singer-songwriters such as Carlos Varela, Silvio Rodríguez and Pablo Milanés are among the notable performers who have graced this particular stage. In 2001, the theatre was the scene of a concert by the Welsh rock band Manic Street Preachers, which was attended by President Fidel Castro himself. On being warned by the band that they would be playing very loud, Castro responded, “You cannot be louder than war!“.[1] In 1956, Liberace appeared on stage as part of his first international tour.

This theatre has the largest audience capacity in Cuba (8,000). Aside from the fact that it’s rather cold and unattractive, and the security staff don’t allow dancing, jumping or any such behavior, it’s probably one of the best equipped venues in town. From time to time, it hosts pop and rock concerts, by local big names like Carlos Valera, Pablo Milanés, Equis Alfonso and Buena Fe.

First called Blanquita and later Charles Chaplin, this 4,500-seat theatre―the largest in Havana―has been the favorite venue for large productions, such as the debut of Spanish actress and singer Sarita Montiel, ice shows, or the first season of the Bolshoi Ballet in Cuba. Before the construction of the Convention Palace, it was used for meetings of the Cuban Parliament and other political events. Today it is the main venue of the Cubadisco Festival, the Adolfo Guzmán Popular Music competition, as well as performances that attract large crowds, such as pop and rock concerts by local big names like Carlos Valera, Pablo Milanés, Equis Alfonso and Buena Fe. Notable foreign acts to play here include Billy Joel in the 1980s, the Maniac Street Preachers in 2001, Rick Wakeman and Air Supply in 2005.

Address:

Ave 1ª, entre 8 y 10,
Miramar, Playa, Havana,
11300

Theatre Karl Marx in Miramar in blue with a big sign on the front, people buying tickets © Cuba Absolutely, 2014 - 2020

Theatre Karl Marx in Miramar in blue with a big sign on the front, people buying tickets © Cuba Absolutely, 2014 - 2020

Theatre Karl Marx in Miramar in blue with a big sign on the front, people buying tickets © Cuba Absolutely, 2014 - 2020

Theatre Karl Marx in Miramar in blue with a big sign on the front, people buying tickets © Cuba Absolutely, 2014 - 2020

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Sources:

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Karl_Marx_Theatre

[2] http://www.lahabana.com/guide/teatro-karl-marx/

Image Sources:

[1] http://www.lahabana.com/guide/teatro-karl-marx/

[2] http://www.lahabana.com/guide/teatro-karl-marx/

[3] http://www.lahabana.com/guide/teatro-karl-marx/

[4] http://www.lahabana.com/guide/teatro-karl-marx/

[5] http://www.cubatechtravel.com/destination/extrahotel/305/karl-marx-theater

[6] http://www.cubatechtravel.com/destination/extrahotel/305/karl-marx-theater

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