Built in 1860, the Dom Pedro V Theatre is located at St. Augustine’s Square and is the first Western-style theater built in China. To this date, the theater stands as a major cultural landmark of the community of Macau as it is occasionally used for public celebrations and events. The theater was built to commemorate King Dom Pedro V of Portugal and was the very first venue in Asia to stage the iconic “Madame Butterfly” of Puccini.
The theater is neo-classical in essence and is painted in a pale green color with matching dark green doors and windows. Its red roof tiles make a powerful contrast to the theater’s basic façade colors. In the year 1873, the main façade of the building underwent a major renovation to adapt to the more neo-classical approach that we see today. The main façade of the theater is 16 meters high and is topped by a triangular pediment with three arched openings that are supported by four sets of ionic pilasters. The festoons on the arches are adorned with floral patterns with white plaster frames that stand at 6 meters high and 3 meters wide. The pediment and 8 pilasters are then simply and minimally decorated while the cornice and architrave moldings are all in white.
The old theater was left unused for almost twenty years due to a serious termite problem that was not contained. It was only in 1993 where extensive restoration work was carried out and soon enough operations resumed.
The theater has a large entrance hall that welcomes guests with its elegant chandeliers and sweeping red velvet curtains. The floor plan of the theater consists of a lobby area, a small ballroom, a library, a snooker room for entertainment purposes of stage actors and a circular-shaped auditorium with a humble stage and long corridors on both sides. The seating capacity of the auditorium is at 300 seats. Each side corridor is endowed by a flight of stairs to the first floor where ten pillars hold up a crescent-shaped balcony of the auditorium area. A restaurant is also attached to the theater.
Other nearby sites of the theater include the St. Augustine’s Square, which is a traditional Portuguese-style streetscape, the St. Laurence’s Church which is one of the three oldest churches in the city, and the Lilau Square, which used to be a main source of spring water in Macau. Other neighboring tourist attractions that are World Heritage Sites include the St. Augustine’s Church, the St. Joseph’s Seminary and the Sir Robert Ho Tung Library.
Bus Nos. 6, 9, 9A, 16, 18, 23, 28B, 32 and AP1 all come close to the Dom Pedro V Theatre but none of them pass right in front of the theater. Visitors who want to stop by the theater can disembark from such buses and walk for a few minutes. Another alternative is to take Bus Nos. 18 and 28B that go straight to Rua do Padre Antonia which is also located near the said theater. Stop by Dom Pedro Y Theater and marvel at this wonderful historical landmark of Macau City.