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"Town Hall, Polish opera, US president" Top 5 Page for this destination Town Hall Square - Rotuses Aiikste Tip by matcrazy1

by matcrazy1

When I walked Didzioju gatve (Large Street) southwards I entered a triangle square where the street splited into two streets. It was Town Hall Square (Rotuses aikste). The square was closed by large, white, clasic style building on the south. It was Vilnius Town Hall rebuilt at the end of 18th century.

being originally the town hall (seat of city authorities) it served as a theater where world premiere of Polish national opera, "Halka" by Moniuszko took place on 1st January 1848. The theatre was close by Russian authorities (like most Polish institutions) after anti-tzar uprising in 1863-1864. It was re-opened in 1906 and closed again in 1942. In Soviet times it was a representative seat of Lithuanian artists where many events took place. Nowadays it's partly open to the public. If you go earlier than me you can visit its gothic cellars and historical expostion.

On December 2002, the president of the USA, George Bush stood on Town Hall stairs and congratulated Lithuania welcoming to NATO. Lithuania finally joined NATO on 29th March 2004. It was very touching to see (on TV news) tears of Lithuanian Prime Minister (or President) at the celebration of NATO enlargement. After many years of bondage and repressions under Soviet regime it's no wonder that he was moved to tears.

Address: Rotuses aikste, LT-2001 Vilnius, Lithuania
Directions: From the Cathedral Square walk a few minutes southwards Pilies gatve (Castle Street) to triangle square at its end, continue walk southwards (Didzioji gatve) - the building in front of you, at Town Hall's square (Rotuses aikste).

Review Helpfulness: 2.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Updated Jun 25, 2004
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