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September 30 in Swedish History

The Stockholm Opera house - The Gustavian Opera House - was inaugurated on this day in 1782.


1782: Gustavianska operahuset (The Gustavian Opera House) in Stockholm is inaugurated. Also called “Gustav III:s opera,” it is a building at Gustav Adolfs torg, and it is built through an initiative by King Gustav III, by architect Carl Fredrik Adelcrantz, who had a passion for theater. The mission given Adelcrantz by the king was to design a huge theater building and at the same time stay true to Baroque architect and city planner Nicodemus Tessin the younger’s ideas about the look of the Gustav Adolf square. Adelcrantz got inspiration from France, and the building was erected on the east side of the square, with the salon being in a horseshoe shape and with a sloping stage (very much like the theater in Lyon, designed by Jacques-Germain Soufflot).
The salon and the foyer are in gold and white, and the building has three floors. For the inauguration, the opera “Dido and Aeneas” is planned to be performed, but the soloist chosen to sing the role of Dido, Danish-born Caroline Müller, had left Sweden, so another opera is performed instead: “Cora and Alonzo.”
On March 16, 1792, King Gustav III is murdered in the opera house he helped build. When in 1892 the building was torn down to give place for the present Kungliga Operan (the Royal Opera), the room into which the ailing king was carried was kept. This room was then re-created in the next opera house.
Following the murder of the king, official masked balls were prohibited until 1821.


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