Mahen Theatre in Brno
The Mahen Theatre witnessed the premieres of the greatest works of Leoš Janáček and it was the first theatre on the European continent to be lit by electric light bulbs.
In 1882 the construction of the new German Municipal Theatre “Na hradbách” (On the Wall), today’s Mahen Theatre, was finished. Even though Brno was not electrified at that time, the theatre was the first one in Europe to be lit by electric light bulbs. For this purpose a small steam-electric power station was built. The author of the project was Thomas Alva Edison himself and certain parts of his original electric installation are can be seen in a small exposition in the theatre’s foyer. After the formation of Czechoslovakia in 1918, the theatre became Czech property. Since then, the theatre has been a Czech domain and this is evident from the fact that all premieres of Janáček’s plays since 1919 have taken place here. Until 1965, the theatre bore Janáček’s name.