The Manila Metropolitan Theater, together with the Coconut Palace, is one of the main landmarks of the capital of the Philippines.
It plays an essential role in the cultural life of Manila. Besides that, the theater is interesting from the perspective of architecture and history.
History of the Architectural Masterpiece of Manila
The first grand opening of the Manila Metropolitan Theater was held in October 1931. Juan M. Arellano became an architect of the building. After World War I that made people know grief, everyone wanted to feel a sense of holiday, freedom of desires, and have a limitlessness of opportunities. Construction of the Metropolitan Theater became a kind of psychological reaction to liberation from austere living that prevailed during the years of the war.
However, the triumph of peace and holiday did not last long: in 1945 during the battle of Manila the building of the theater was significantly damaged. Some parts of the roof and walls were ruined. After the war, Americans made a reconstruction of the theater. Then again, the theater was neglected.
In 1978, the building was restored again. However, the theater was still abandoned. In 2010, the National Commission for Culture and the Arts and the Manila city administration developed a project on the theater revival. The restoration works were done once again. This time a grand opening of the Manila Metropolitan Theater was held.
The Sample of the Architecture of the 20th century
The building of the theater is made in the style of Art deco. It is a mixture of the neo-classical and modern architectural styles. The builders realized the following features of Art deco:
- Straight lines and geometric purity of the design;
- Symmetrical patterns;
- A luxury of design;
- Non-standard architectural solutions;
- Modern expensive materials.
The façade of the theater is decorated with the sculptures of the Italian master Francesco Riccardo Monti, who worked on the Manila Metropolitan together with Juan Arellano. The interior of the theater is spiced with the embossed ornaments depicting local plants. The author of this creation is artist Isabelo Tampingco.