Photographer: Åke Eson Lindman
Photographer: Åke Eson Lindman
Drottningholm Palace Theatre, Stockholm
Drottningholm Palace Theatre is one of the world’s few preserved 18th century stages. The first it opened its curtain was in July 1766. Today it holds an operation that is very much alive and that attracts opera enthusiasts from all over the world.
Architect Carl Fredrik Adelcrantz designed the theatre in 1762 on behalf of Adolf Fredrik and Lovisa Ulrika after a previous theatre building burned down.
Reconstruction according to Desprez’s concept
In 1791 Gustav III had the theatre partially rebuilt according to Louis Jean Desprez’s concept. A number of theatres were included on the south side and large déjeuner theatre was added on the left, where the English park was being built.
The Drottningholm Theatre was then back in use starting in the 1930’s.
The building is a timber frame construction without brick filling, polished and decolourised in a light yellow colour that was found in the theatre. On its north side the building is four stories high and on the south side where the main entrance is it is two stories high. The hip and pent hip roof is covered in sheet metal painted black.
Drottningholm Royal Theatre.
During the 19th century the theatre boxes were used as accommodations for the royal court. In the beginning of the 20th century there was a surge of interest in the 18th century and Gustav III:s theatre building was also discovered as a preserved treasure with its machinery and decor intact. Agne Beijer established the theatre as a theatre museum. Since the 1930’s, theatre and opera are once again acted out on the stage. The theatre is a listed building.
Kyrkpaviljongen (Church Pavilion) and Jaktpaviljongen (Hunting Pavilion)
The pavilions east of Teaterplan were erected in the 1760’s to accommodate parts of the royal courtship during the summer stay at Drottningholm. According to a map from 1779, Kyrkpaviljongen was intended for the ladies-in-waiting. At the turn of the century in 1900, the King’s squires lived in this building during the summer.
Jaktpaviljongen used to be called Norra träpaviljongen (the North Wood Pavilion) and Duke Fredrik Adolf’s Pavilion. Up until 1777, the Queen’s Grand Marshal, Court Mistress and a lady-in-waiting named Taube were living in the building. In 1779 a reconstruction was made for Gustav III:s brother, Duke Fredrik Adolf. He moved in upstairs with his mistress Sofie Hagman, who worked as an actress at the Opera. The downstairs was occupied by Lord Chamberlain Johan Gabriel Oxenstierna. In the end of the 19th century, a hunting room was established on the ground floor with dark wood panelling and hunting trophies and it was after that one began to refer to the house as Jaktpaviljongen. Today the Theatre has full disposal of the house.
The erections of both buildings were funded by the royal family’s private funds and it was built from wood, which was the cheapest method. After that they were fitted with lime plaster to make them look like stone houses. The pavilions were renovated in 1907-13, when among other things electricity and heating was installed.
The Queen’s Pavilion
The pavilion south of Teaterplan was one of the wings that were planned for Gustav III:s siblings. It was completed in 1780 as a home for his brother, Duke Karl (XIII) and his wife Duchess Hedvig Elisabet Charlotta. Queen Sofia, Oscar II:s wife, lived here in the middle of the 19th century and also gave birth to their son Gustav (V) in the pavilion. Today it is therefore called the Queen’s Pavilion, but it is also referred to as Duke Karl’s Pavilion and Södra stenpaviljongen (the south stone pavilion).
The building was most likely erected according to designs by architect Carl Fredrik Adelcrantz. It was built with brick and has the most expensive interior out of the four wings by Teaterplan. This is most likely due to the fact that the construction was financed with public funds. The pavilion’s original construction plan and fixed interior is mainly preserved. Here there is beautiful carpentry as well as carved door lintels made by Jean Baptiste Masreliez, originally silk wallpaper, woven roof structure and fireplaces from the 18th century. During the 19th century, smaller changes were made and in the beginning of the 20th century a larger restoration was performed, when among other things electricity and heating was installed.
Since 1925 the Theatre Museum in the building is a listed structure.
Hovmarsalksflygeln (the Marshal wing)
A wing was built next to the Queen’s Pavilion in 1791, after several years of planning. This concluded the work on creating symmetry around Teaterplan. The building was erected as a summer home for Gustav III:s sister Sofia Albertina, who had disposal of the building until her death in 1829. During the 19th century the building was used for the royal courtship and during the 20th century the building has continued to function as residential homes.
It has not been established who designed the building, it may have been theatre architect Louis Jean Desprez or Carl Christoffer Gjörwell, or both in collaboration.
Like the Queen’s Pavilion it is erected with bricks. The original construction plan is for the most part preserved, as are construction details such as carpentry, fireplaces and a partially hand-painted wallpaper. The most extensive renovation was made in 1907-13, when among other things electricity and heating was installed. Additional modernisations and renovations were made in 1931 and 1951. Today the house is a residential home.
Part of the world heritage
Drottningholm Palace with its surroundings, called The Royal Domain of Drottningholm, has been on the Unesco World Heritage List since 1991. This means that it is also internationally classified as very valuable from a cultural and historical point of view. It is a part of the world heritage. Unesco’s convention concerning the protection of the world’s cultural and natural heritage was started in 1972.
Accessibility information and entrance
To increase accessibility to the Drottningholm area, the National Property Board of Sweden has created a variety of folders with braille and a tactile map. There are also information boards in the park where the gradient of the walkways is indicated. In 2016 the entrance to the Drottningholm Palace Theatre was also made wheelchair accessible.
Drottningholms slottsteater, Teaterplan
Construction year: 1762 and 1791
1762 Carl Fredrik Adelcrantz and 1791 Louis Jean Desprez
Place on map
- Year of Construction:
- 1762 and 1791
- 1762 Carl Fredric Adelcrantz, 1791 Louis Jean Desprez