About the theatre


The magnificent First Ancient Theatre of Larissa was constructed in the first half of the 3rd century BC in the southern foothills of the hill “Fortress”, where the ancient city’s fortified Acropolis stood. It was not more until the end of the 3rd century or early in the 4th century AD that it existed. An earthquake in the late 2nd century or early in the 3rd century AD destroyed the second floor of the scene, the Doric entablature and a part of the transcendent epitheatre. Almost its total destruction was induced by a second strong earthquake that occurred in 7th century AD.

The grand covered passageway has collided behind the theatre’s scene and the retaining walls have suffered serious damage.

On the hill of the Fortress, apart from the Ancient Theatre, there was also the temple of Athena, the temples of Omoloos Zeus, of Zeus Thauliou, of Artemis Throsias, of Artemis Eilitheias, of Artemis Vendidos (in the ancient theatre), of Hercules where the origin of Aleuadae (of Larissa) derived from. Even closer to the Theatre the temple of Dionysus stood, known as Karpios. All these temples constitute a great monumental ensemble, which is located in the most attractive side of the citadel and the free market, an integral part of which composed the theatre itself.

In this monument, in addition to the theatrical performances and reruns of classic plays, original plays of the New Comedy of that era were also performed.

The theatre is still used by the municipality as an outdoor place of church gatherings, which in ancient Larissa had the ancient name “Agora”. Head of these gatherings was the prime mover Stagos. Furthermore, the same monument constituted a place of convention for the representatives and delegates of many other different city-states that participated in the federation of the Thessalian cities at the prestigious Community of the Thessalians, having Larissa as their capital.