The Roman Theatre Of Mérida Illuminated By Stars

06/24/2019 · By Iñigo Esteban
teatro clásico Mérida
The Roman Theater will be illuminated again for the International Festival of Classical Theater. © Festival Internacional de Teatro Clásico de Mérida

The Mérida International Classical Theatre Festival will once again be one of the cultural events of the year. The 65th edition, which will take place between 27 June and 31 August, puts the focus on several legendary Greek classics and will feature a broad cast of Spanish star actors, some of which return to the festival after years of absence.

Together they have over 120 years of experience, not to mention the multiple recognitions and awards – Concha Velasco and José María Pou are two illustrious figures returning to the Roman Theatre of Mérida. And they’re not the only ones: performers such as Lluís Homar, Marta Larralde and José Vicente Moirón will accompany them in this 65th edition of the event, on one of the most prestigious stages in Spain.

From 27 June on, the Roman Theatre will light up with a plethora of stars, thanks to Jesús Cimarro, who is responsible for the programming and direction of the festival for the eighth year running. An opera, two dance shows, five premiering plays and a zarzuela will have the formidable venue fill up until 31 August. Edu Soto, Amaia Salamanca, Pepe Viyuela, and Paco Arrojo will also showcase their talent in this edition, as will stage directors like Mario Gas and José Carlos Plaza, choreographers such as Víctor Ullate and Rafael Amargo, and authors like the great Luis García Montero.


The 65th edition puts the focus on myths of Greek classicism and will feature a broad cast of national stars

Without a doubt, one of the highlights will be the return of Concha Velasco to the Mérida stage, in Metamorphoses (31 July – 4 August). She’ll be surrounded by the likes of Pepe Viyuela, Adrián Lastra, and Edu Soto, under the direction of David Serrano. Another notable play on the programme is Prometheus (July 24 – 28), featuring Lluis Homar and Amaia Salamanca and directed by veteran José Carlos Plaza, in remembrance of the epic legend. Furthermore, there will be a performance of Old Friend Cicero (3 – 7 July), with José María Pou playing the Roman politician, speaker and jurist who poses a civic debate that still resonates today.

Dance lovers will have the pleasure to see two of the most recognized names on the Spanish scene on stage. The Víctor Ullate Ballet company will perform Antigone (19-21), with the conflict between conscience and obedience as the central theme; a show that tries to provide answers to the eternal mystery about humanity’s destiny. And then there is prestigious dancer Rafael Amargo and his company, who will present Dionysus (16 and 17 July) over frantic rhythms that emphasise the inner struggle of the Greek god between his transgressive and his peaceful side.

The historical Mérida stage will also see operas such as Samson and Delilah, from 27 to 30. The classic, directed by Paco Azorín, will be performed by the Chamber Choir and Orchestra of Extremadura and over 400 extras belonging to associations such as Down Extremadura, Plena Inclusión, ONCE, and Adaba. Long live the theatre!