Teatro Peon Contreras is the city’s premier theatre and is located only 2 blocks north of the main square (Zócalo). It was built in 1907 and as little as 15 years ago it was derelict and forlorn. Now it is very presentable and well-maintained (if ageing) and hosts classical music and opera concerts, plus a wide range of dance performances. Many of the events at the theatre are free.
Peon Contreras is owned by the state government, and as a result prices are subsidised. We go to the Yucatan Symphonic Orchestra, it’s biggest draw, and tickets range from $80 to $150 MXP. Even when we sit in the Gods, we have a great view. The orchestra is of a high standard and includes many foreign members, from both the US and across Europe. Performances are on Friday evenings at 9 pm, with a repeat performance on Sunday at midday. You can buy online at sinfonicadeyucatan.com.mx or at the box office, which is open from 9 to 9 and 10 to 3 at weekends. If you need to park, there are many lots; we use a place on Calle 58 between 57 & 59.
If there is no event, or you can’t make it to one, the Lobby always has small art exhibitions. Ask one of the guards if you can have a look around the auditorium, it has worked when we’ve had visitors stay. The theatre is very elegant, with its Art Deco style and broad sweeping staircases and is a prime example of why Mérida is considered the cultural capital of SE Mexico.
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