The Magic of Theatres in Kolkata

From Chaplin Theatre to Nandan, the walls beat with the city's soul. The art takes the spotlight and transports you into a magical realm. The Theatres in Kolkata have taken a journey through time.

Ishita Ghosh
New Update

In the city of Kolkata, timeless stories live on the stage, where actors breathe life into the character and the onlookers experience a grandeur of celebration. Here are some of the iconic theatres in Kolkata.

Kolkata is a city where art and history dance at every corner. The theatres in Kolkata play an integral part in the cultural identity. Though theatre has evolved significantly by adapting to the changing values and expression of the times, the one thing that never changes is the love for the craft of storytelling. In recent times, mainstream theatre, experimental theatre, and performance art have gained momentum but the classic theatres still capture the aesthetic like nothing else. Kolkata boasts a range of cinema halls from single screen to multiplex but the old theatres still play a nostalgic part of the history of Kolkata. Here are some of the oldest theatres in Kolkata.

1. Star Theatre

Star Theatre

Built in 1883, this was one of the places where the first motion pictures in Bengal were released. Despite a fire destroying the site, it was later restored. While primarily a cinema hall, plays are also frequently staged here. Despite the difficulties, this place has stood the test of time."

Location - Hatibagan Market

2. Minerva Theatre 

Minerva theatre in Kolkata

Built in 1893 and initially owned by Nagendra Bhusan Mukhopadhaya, this theatre staged numerous patriotic plays during the freedom struggle. Sri Girish Chandra Ghosh, a renowned Bengali actor, writer, and director, is known to have given his last performance here. The theatre made its debut with a legendary adaptation of Shakespeare’s Macbeth, which remains evergreen.

Location - Utpal Dutta Sarani, Ram Bagan

3. Globe Cinema

Globe Cinema kolkata

Formerly an opera house built in 1827, it was later sold to EM Cohen. He converted it into a movie theatre and named it ‘Globe Cinema’. It became one of the first theatres in Kolkata to regularly screen English movies. Though transformed into a twin theatre multiplex, the melancholia of the opera house persists.

Location - Lindsay Street, Esplanade

4. Jyoti Cinema

Jyoti cinema kolkata

Built in the 1930s, Jyoti screened only Hindi films. It created history by screening 70mm films in the 1970s. After suffering huge financial losses, the theatre was forced to close down. But cinema lovers still cherish its legacy.

Location - Lenin Sarani

5. Paradise


Paradise cinema kolkata

One cannot just mention theatres in Kolkata without mentioning Paradise. Since 1943, the hall entertained a huge number of people. After suffering through financial losses, the single screens were renovated to suit the modern era.

Location - Bentinck Street, Esplanade

first motion pictures in Bengal screening 70mm films in the 1970s. patriotic plays during the freedom struggle cinema lovers single screens twin theatre multiplex Sri Girish Chandra Ghosh adaptation of Shakespeare’s Macbeth