Tourist Attraction in San Salvador: Teatro Nacional de El Salvador
Teatro Nacional de El Salvador, or National Theatre of El Salvador, is the oldest theatre in Central America. It began construction on November 3, 1911, by the French architect Daniel Beylard; and inaugurated March 1, 1917. It is of French Renaissance style with modern touches. It was decorated by the Italian architect Lucio Cappellaro, and its Great Hall is one of the most beautiful and elegant in Central America. A competition was held to choose a design for the theatre. The prizes for the first two places were 8,000 and 4,000 Francs each. The entries were reviewed by a commission composed of the engineers José E. Alcaine, Luis Fleury, and Aurelio Fuentes. The 12 plans submitted were from the following countries: 5 from France, 2 from the United States, 1 from the Principality of Monaco, 1 from Italy, and 3 from El Salvador. The winning project was "Melpemone" by the French Architect Daniel Beylard. The construction contract was awarded to the Salvadoran firm Ferracutti y Cía. José María Peralta Lagos was the head engineer during construction.Multiple architectural styles were enriched in the fusion of the construction of the National Theatre including: Versailles Style, Rococo, Romanticism, and Art Nouveau, with regional touches. Some of the furniture was elaborated in the shop of the theatre, the rest of the furniture, rugs, carpets, armchairs, and lecterns, were imported from the United States. The drop curtains of the stage and the lights of the boxes and halls, were brought from Austria.