Read on to discover the concert halls and theaters in Quito Old Town where you’ll find the best shows, dance and live music in Quito’s Historic Centre, with some of the loveliest architecture in the city.
Guayaquil and Manabi
Quito’s grandest and most illustrious theater was opened in 1886, making it one of the oldest opera houses in South America. One of the first neoclassic designs in the city by German architect Francisco Schmidt recalling the great European opera houses, Teatro Sucre is as much to be admired for its exterior as for its world class performances. Host to various events including the international jazz and classical musical festivals, the venue is the first port of call for any culture aficionado visiting the city, with artist including Joss Stone and Charles Bradley on the bill in previous years.
Positioned to the south of the hubbub of the Historic Centre, Teatro Mexico is an expected jewel. The charming space has a varied programming, with presentations including experimental theater, cinema, musical concerts, art exhibitions and workshops. The theater opened in 1950 as a cinema specifically for Mexican films.
Espejo and Guayaquil
A fine example of art-nouveau in the country, Teatro Bolivar has experienced its fair share of drama – on and off stage. After enjoying several decades of success following its 1945 construction, the theater suffered a catastrophic set-back when a fire that begun in international fast-food chain Pizza Hut destroyed almost three-quarters of its installations. Only recently has the theaere returned to business as usual, adding new features to its facilities, including Wonder 1933, a bar and nightclub space and Café Galletti, a stylish coffee shop selling Ecuadorian blends.
Av. Gran Colombia
Built in 1908 by architect Giacomo Radioconcini, Teatro Capitol was recently treated to a US$3 million refurbishment. Enjoying a space opposite Old Town’s Alemeda park, the theater often plays hosts to Ecuadorian pop bands and variety performances. It was also the proud host of the ‘TEDx Quito’ talks, watched by thousands of international viewers.
Casa de la Danza
Junín and Javier Gutiérrez
For over two decades the Casa de la Danza (Dance House) has been at the forefront of creativity in Quito, benefitting thousands of people through it art and social programs. Found in a beautiful old building complete with open patio (where you’ll find a cosy bar), the foundation both brings prominent international dancers to Quito, and gives a space for local artists to perform. Every March the venue hosts the International Festival of Women in Dance, a globally acclaimed socio-cultural event.
Casa de las Bandas
Valparaiso and Don Bosco
Located in the bustling and traditional neighbourhood La Tola at the edge of the city, Casa de las Bandas (House of the Bands) is the place to catch popular Ecuadorian music and local traditional bands, the type you’d likely hear during neighbourhood and religious festivities. Latin American music is added to the bill once in a while, but the emphasis is on heritage sounds.
Guayaquil and Manabi
Situated on the same charming square as Teatro Sucre, Teatro Variedades is just as eye-catching as its grander neighbour, with a charming blue colour and distinctive scallop design over its doorway. Originally opened in 1913 to show silent films, the quirky theater now hosts smaller, more intimate events, especially dance, choir music and pop bands.