Teatro Español y Naves del Español

440 Teatro Español

The Oldest in Europe (1583-2023)
Exposición Teatro Español de Madrid, el teatro más antiguo de Europa (1583-2023) 440 años)
November 8, 2023
July 14, 2024
Free entrance

From Tuesday to Sunday 11 a.m. to 2 p.m


Logo 440 Teatro Español


Exhibition: 440 Teatro Español, The Oldest in Europe (1583-2023)

The theatrical life of Madrid’s Teatro Español has been going on without interruption for 440 years, a milestone that makes it the oldest theatre in Europe with an uninterrupted programme. From its origins in the 16th century - when it was known as the Corral del Príncipe - to the present day, the Teatro Español has survived fires and various attempts to demolish it, and has been refurbished several times to adapt to the passing of time. It has stood witness to the political and social upheavals of Madrid, and has become a symbol of a city that has always accorded theatre a prominent place in its history.

Its location in the heart of the city of Madrid has allowed it to be a direct witness to great historical periods and one simply cannot ignore the fact that the Spanish Golden Age concentrated in time and space many of the most illustrious artistic figures of all time, and that many of their works were premièred on the stage of the Teatro Español.

This exhibition, a more than deserved tribute to its 440 years of history, is based on extensive and rigorous research into that same history, bringing together documents, anecdotes and images that offer a multifaceted perspective on three key areas: the artists, the public and the professionals. In short, it is a look at a past that is in constant dialogue with the future, so that all visitors can gain an in-depth knowledge of the “secrets” of the stage of the oldest theatre in Europe with an uninterrupted programme.


·         Admission is free, without reservation, until full capacity is reached.

·         Although groups are welcome, bookings will not be accepted. Groups will be limited to a maximum of 25 people and one guide and may enter the exhibition subject to space being available.

·         Visitors must comply with the instructions of exhibition staff at all times.

·         In the event of an evacuation, the instructions of the Theatre’s staff must be followed.


In order to protect the artistic heritage conserved and displayed in the 440 Teatro Español exhibition and to create a suitable atmosphere in which to enjoy the visit, the following are not permitted:

·         Eating, drinking or smoking in the rooms.

·         Touching the works on display.

·         Running in the corridors or rooms of the Theatre.

·         Bags, rucksacks or parcels larger than 40 x 40 cm.

·         Entering the exhibition with any form of wheeled transport, including bicycles, skateboards, skates or any form of electric transport (except those required by persons with reduced mobility).

·         Entering the exhibition with animals, except guide or assistance dogs. 

The Theatre accepts no responsibility for any items forgotten or lost within the premises.


·         Please keep your voice down.

·         If you have children with you, please ensure that they behave appropriately.

·         Photography is permitted inside the Theatre, but please do not use a flash or tripod.

·         Information about the Theatre’s services and facilities is available from the Customer Service staff.

We hope you enjoy your visit.

Ficha artística

Curator Eduardo Pérez-Rasilla

Assistant exhibition curator Noelia Burgaleta Areces

Art director Natalia Menéndez

Museographic project Aurora Herrera Gómez

Identity and exhibition graphics Nerea García Pascual

Audiovisual content David González

Scientific committee Carlos Villareal Colunga

Artistic assistance Loles Peña

Project implementation, construction and assembly V15

Residentes de Ayudantía de dirección Paul Alcaide, Cristina Hermida, Mariana Kmaid-Levy, Cristina Simón

Residentes de Audiovisuales María Díez, Jorge Librero

Con la colaboración de Centro de Documentación de las Artes Escénicas y de la Música (CDAEM), Museo Nacional del Prado (©Archivo Fotográfico del Museo Nacional del Prado), Biblioteca Nacional de España (BNE), Museo Nacional de Teatro, Real Academia de Bellas Artes de San Fernando, CSIC, Archivo del Centro de Ciencias Humanas y Sociales, Archivo ABC, Museu Nacional d´Art de Catalunya, MAE Institut del Teatre, Museo Lázaro Galdiano, Fundación Juan March, Museo de Historia de Madrid, Archivo de la Villa de Madrid, Archivo Regional de la Comunidad de Madrid, Biblioteca Regional de la Comunidad de Madrid, Biblioteca Histórica Municipal de Madrid, Museo Nacional del Romanticismo, Biblioteca Histórica de Madrid, Instituto Cervantes, Fundación Federico García Lorca, Casa Museo Lope de Vega, Casa Museo Emilia Pardo Bazán, Museo Nacional del Traje, Instituto del Patrimonio Cultural, Banco Nacional de España, Instituto Geográfico Nacional. Real Escuela Superior de Arte Dramatico (RESAD).

Audiovisual content provided by RTVE, Globomedia, Los Ilusos Films, Filmoteca, El Deseo, Rafael Casas, Rodcar Life, Imposible Films.

Special thanks to Francisco Sáez Raposo, Fernando Doménech Rico, Guadalupe  Soria Tomás, Ana Isabel Ballesteros Dorado, Ana Alma García, Víctor García Ruiz, Berta Muñoz Cáliz, José Ramón Fernández, Antonio Castro Jiménez, Verónica Ripoll León,  Daniel González (CDAEM), Mª Teresa del Pozo (Museo Nacional del Teatro), Isabel Ana Costa (Museo de Historia de Madrid), Pilar Valenciano, Coordinación del Barrio de las Letras, Locales del Barrio de las Letras (Casa Alberto, Librería Prado, Cervecería Santa Ana, Cervecería Alemana, Capas Seseña, Pastelería el Pozo, Gran Hotel Inglés, La Casa del Abuelo).