Teatro Yagüez

Teatro Yagüez information

Location
Mayagüez , Puerto Rico
Address
cnr Calles McKinley & Dr Barbosa
Telephone
+1 787 834 0523
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The beautiful Teatro Yagüez would be an architectural icon in any European capital, let alone quiescent Mayagüez, a city that sometimes struggles to assert its understated cultural identity. Dubbed the ‘Cathedral of Sonorous Art’ by enamored locals, the building was the brainchild of Francisco Maymón, the son of Italian immigrants who was an early pioneer of silent movies in Puerto Rico at the beginning of the 20th century. Maymón inaugurated his first theater in 1909, an opulent neobaroque structure that was filled with Italian ceilings and tiles imported from Spain. Hosting opera, orchestral concerts, silent movies and plays, it rapidly became the font of polite society in the island’s proud western city. But the glory wasn’t to last. Although the Yagüez miraculously withstood the catastrophic earthquake that rocked Mayagüez in 1918, the theater faced disaster the following year when it burned down in a mysterious fire that claimed the lives of 150 people. After several bitter lawsuits with potential land-grabbers, Maymón finally won the right to rebuild the Yagüez on its original site in the early 1920s. The building that rose from the ashes was designed by the brilliant architect Sabás Honoré and was every bit as opulent as its predecessor.