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St.Petersburg is a city which is duly called the cultural capital of Russia and the open-air museum. Staying in St. Petersburg and not visiting at least one of its numerous theaters and museums is considered bad manners. The Hermitage, Russian Museum, Pushkin House, Cabinet of Curiosities, Museum of Ethnography of Russia — these and many other names say a lot, not only to a Russian, but to any informed foreigner, too.
These and many other famous St. Petersburg museums are visited by tourists and tourist groups from different countries every day. But the Northern capital has to show much more of less known but not less interesting museums! This is the Bread Museum, the Museum of History of Russia’s political police, the Museum of Circus arts, and the Museum of Space and Missile technology. Also there are the museums-apartments of outstanding poets and writers (Blok, Vladimir Nabokov, Dostoevsky, Brodsky).
Do not forget about the famous museums in the suburbs of St. Petersburg. Peterhof, with its world-famous palaces and fountains is bringing to the visitors a spirit of previous centuries, it is really a city-museum.
There are more than a hundred theaters in St. Petersburg. Starting with the world famous (the Bolshoj Drama Theater, Malyj Drama Theater, etc.) finishing with the exotic ones, such as the «Theater of the rain», where young experimenting actors play Chekhov, or children’s theater «Stray Doggie». The past year has added more than 60 new productions and shows and about 5000 performances in the city.
The first and the most important theater in modern Russia is the Mariinsky Theater and Valery Gergiev is a world-famous person. The theater building is completed with an imperial scale and has a long history. If you wish to see the masterpieces of Russian opera and ballet, then you certainly should visit it. The Academic Theater of Opera and Ballet is not as ambitious as the Mariinsky, it was even called the «Small Stage» in the 19th century. But the professionalism and scale of the performances will surprise you. The theater building is the part of the architectural ensemble of the Mikhailovsky Palace and the Place of Arts, so it has the second name of Mikhailovsky. Bolshoj Drama Theater is also very popular. BDT is one of the best examples of modern art. Visiting St. Petersburg, be sure to pay attention to the theaters. The most famous performances are held here.