“Il Rossetti” is the name of the playhouse in Trieste. Formally known as the Politeama Rossetti or Teatro Stabile del Friuli-Venezia Giulia — it is where one goes to see headliner plays, musicals and concerts. Politeama means multi-purpose; from one man shows featuring local folk hero Simone Cristicchi to plays featuring some of Italy’s most famous actors of stage and screen to world famous singers like Art Garfunkle, to Italy’s top pop stars to Blue Man group, they all perform here.
The building which houses the theater was designed by architect Nicolò Bruno, and is an impressive structure combining different architectural constructs in the style of Eclecticism. Nonetheless it is, overall, dominated by exquisite, light and almost Neo-Renaissance forms. Located on the busy, pedestrian-only Viale XX Settembre, it is nestled against a natural hill which forced the architect to come up with an unexpected and unusual construction solution; creating a sot of “split-level” where the main foyer is located on the steep hill-side of the building (on Via Crispi) and it is reached by climbing a large staircase built on a diagonal from the Viale below. In this way, the main foyer and the first floor level are on the hill on the north facade while the ground floor level is on the Viale on the south facade. Today, the main entrance is on the Viale.
The Theater is named for Domenico Rossetti De Scander (1774-1842), a Triestine patron, writer, geographer, attorney and the former President of the City Council of Trieste.
The original theater boasted some unique features, a stage measuring 25 meters wide and 15 deep, an astounding capacity for 5,000, and a cupola that would open in the summer. After major restructuring, the seating is now limited to just 1,531 seats and the retractable cupola was replaced with a lovely sky-scape adorned with starlights that shine dimly when the house lights are down.
The theater is a gem with its bright colors and requisite gold gilt and the seating is quite comfortable.
Politeama Rossetti is under the guidance of veteran theater director Franco Però, a son of Trieste.