Théâtre municipal de Tarascon
Tarascon - Cultural place
One of the most remarkable Italian-style theatres in the Provence Alpes Cote d’Azur region, classified as a Historic Monument.
In a Royal Order of 10 August 1825, Charles X approved the Municipal Council's decision to acquire land and a church formerly belonging to the Dominicans (15th century) for the creation of a theatre.
In 1925, Tarascon, which had 12,000 inhabitants and had been a sub-prefecture for 15 years, chose a disused church near Porte Saint-Jean.
It became State property during the Revolutionary era, then a barn under the Republic; major renovation work was started in 1826.
The Théâtre Municipal was inaugurated in 1828, but was completely destroyed by a serious fire during the night of 16 April 1884.
On 31 December 1887, the Municipal Council authorised Louis Chabanel, Mayor of Tarascon, to conclude a private sale with the Tarascon entrepreneurs Mr Tissier and the Maison Apy Portal et Cie, which provided 3 quotes amounting to 43,902 Francs.
A large stage was constructed.
Above the red curtain was inscribed the well-known phrase by Virgil, uttered by a shepherd, 'Deus nobis haec otia fecit', 'God has given us this leisure'. This perfectly appointed room, with its excellent acoustics, rivalled the regions' great theatres.
The current theatre was inaugurated with a performance of Rossini's 'The Barber of Seville' in 1888.
This was followed by a number of shows and comic operas. Tragedies, comedies and variety shows attracted the greatest names of the time, including Albert Lambert, Cécile Saurel, Gaby Morlay, Joséphine Baker, Marie Bell, Fernandel, Tino Rossi, Georges Guétary, Yves Montand and Edith Piaf.
On more than one occasion when entering the theatre, members of the Comédie Française, unable to hide their admiration, were heard to say, 'Your theatre is a real gem', 'a little marvel'.
Following this restoration work, the main façade was adorned with a fronton representing a lyre held by two angels, the work of the Tarascon sculptor Jean-Barnabé Amy (1895).
In 1963, after sixty-four years of life, the building urgently required major repairs. The Chapel vault threatened to collapse and cause a serious accident, then a stone fell off the vault. The theatre was closed for safety reasons. The various problems were studied and a quote was drawn up; it amounted to 4 million Francs. Ultimately, the Municipal Council decided not to approve the renovation project.
The theatre's renaissance began in 1989
The theatre had had the honour of rising from the ashes after the 1884 fire; it had the same good fortune in 1989.
Thérèse Aillaud, Mayor of Tarascon, launched major work in 1985 and saved this venue, which is dear to the hearts of Tarascon residents.
On the evening of 7 January, the theatre performed 'Ba-Ta-Clan' by Offenbach, a one-act musical chinoiserie directed by Guy Coutance.
Twenty years later...
The theatrical seasons are just as successful.
Charles Fabre, Mayor of Tarascon, Vice President of the Arles Crau Camargue Montagnette urban area community and Elisabeth Alric, Deputy Mayor responsible for Culture and the Municipal Council, celebrated the '20th anniversary' of the reopening of the Théâtre Municipal in Tarascon on Friday 9 and Saturday 10 January 2009.
Information provided by OT Tarascon
2 rue Pelletan
- 04 90 91 51 02
Where to stay
Charming family hotel, close to the village centre, to shops and to the train station. Andrew and Laurence provide a warm welcome, personalised and attentive, in a family atmosphere. 17 tastefully decorated rooms, renovated and bright in pleasant and quiet settings. In good weather, relax on the…
Hôtel de Léautau de Mas Blanc
Je vous accueille dans cet hôtel particulier du XVème siècle à deux pas du château médiéval de Tarascon et son parking pour un service de B&B. A votre disposition une très belle suite parentale avec une salle de bain et une petite chambre pour 2 enfants. Vous avez accès aussi aux pièces…
Une petite boutique, style chambre d'hôtel qui se présente d'une manière agréable. La décompression et le confort, tout en restant à la page. Outre de merveilleuses chambres modernes, nous proposons un coin salon spacieux et une attachante pièce avec cheminée et bar. Le jardin ressemblant…
Things to do
Boutique du Monatère de la Visitation
Situé à l'entrée du monatère de la visitation, un petit magasin propose la production artisanale des Visitandines. Ainsi, on peut acquérir légumes, confitures, miel, tisanes (tilleul et verveine), essence de lavande, confection pour enfants (robes, sorties de bain)produits au sein du…
La ferme de Gratte-Semelle
The magnificent orchards of Gratte-Semelle farm extend between Avignon and Tarascon, opposite the Alpilles and on the slopes of La Montagnette. This agricultural operation is perfectly suited to nature: human intervention without damaging the environment, maintenance and development of secured…
Musée d'Art et d'Histoire
Le musée d'art et d'histoire accueille une exposition thématique autour de la Résistance et de la Déportation d'Arles et du pays d'Arles pour les semaines de la mémoires - parcours de résistances (Pays d'Arles/1940-1944) jusqu'au 31 mars 2018. A partir du 22 février, le musée abrite le…
Chapelle Saint Marcellin
The bottle procession takes place in Saint Marcellin Chapel on 1 June every year. On this day, all male residents of Boulbon go to the Chapel carrying a bottle of wine. After the Provençal service, the bottles are blessed. Each participant can then have a sip of wine, while the village police…
Domaine de Lansac
Un domaine dont l'histoire épouse celle d'une illustre famille provençale. Quand le vin est une histoire d'amour et de fidélité... A quelques kilomètres de Tarascon, le Domaine de Lansac et ses 40 hectares de vignes produisent des vins de pays qui exprime la puissance d'un terroir de…
Château de Tarascon
The imposing fortress of Tarascon stands like a sentinel overlooking the waters of the Rhône. During the Middle Ages, the château was located on the border of the County of Provence, opposite Beaucaire and French territory, and gave the impression of defence. Louis II, Duke of Anjou and Count…
Where to eat
Master restaurateur Christian Chay takes pride in perpetuating a family tradition dating back to 1945. His lovingly-prepared cuisine is also a tribute to regional culinary customs, although the sun-packed flavours have evolved with the times. The dishes here provide an explosion of Provencal…