The Hungarian State Opera, which has been housed at Budapest’s Erkel Theater in the meantime, can look forward to being back on stage at its famous home on Andrássy Avenue for the 2021/2022 opera season. The ongoing renovations of the historic building have been long overdue – as it was last refurbished in the 1980s – and thus have encompassed the entire structure, inside and out.
András Almási-Tóth, Artistic Director of the Hungarian State Opera, made the statement about the expected completion date for the renovations, while also adding that the recent productions of The Nutcracker, La Bohème and The Bat at Erkel Theater this past December were a resounding success.
Tóth indicated that, going forward, more traditional, classical works will be shown at the Opera House on Andrássy, while Erkel will feature more folk-theater pieces for a wider audience. And the Eiffel Art Studios, which also serves as a studio and rehearsal space, will provide an arena for more contemporary pieces by young creators.
For the upcoming months at Erkel, Hungary’s State Opera House will be bringing to audiences productions of The Master and Margarita, Parsifal, and Don Carlos (with German director Frank Hilbrich). In the meantime, the Eiffel Art Studios will present the American opera Dead Man Walking and Christian Cantatas.
The original construction of the Opera House was initiated in 1875 per a Neo-Renaissance/Baroque design by Miklós Ybl and took almost a decade to complete. Current renovations have been ongoing for over a year and a half and will cost some $30 million, $20 million of which is going towards a new stage. Additional work includes a refurbished exterior, upgraded acoustics, updated rehearsal rooms, an elevator and even smart-seats for each place in the auditorium, complete with headsets for different languages and digital info tablets.