The Teatro Argentino de La Plata is the second most important lyric opera house in Argentina, after the Teatro Colón in Buenos Aires. The Teatro Argentino is located in a central block of the city of La Plata, the capital of Buenos Aires Province. The venue occupies the block bounded by the 9 and 10 streets and 51 & 53 avenues; it belongs to the so-called Monumental Axis of public buildings in La Plata.
The original building was a classic Italian opera house, conceived in renaissance style by the Italian architect Leopoldo Rocchi. Construction began in 1887, five years after the foundation of the city of La Plata itself. The main hall had a capacity of ca. 1,500 seats. It was inaugurated on November 19, 1890, with Giuseppe Verdi's Otello; in leading roles were the Italian soprano Elvira Colonnese (Desdemona) and the Uruguayan tenor José Oxilia (Othello). The theatre grew to accommodate a renowned stable orchestra and chorus. A stable ballet company was added in 1946. Among the great artists that performed at the Teatro Argentino we find singers such as Maria Barrientos, Luisa Tetrazzini, Marian Anderson, Emma Carelli, Fedora Barbieri, Tito Schipa, Beniamino Gigli, Titta Ruffo, and Mario del Monaco, classical ballet dancers such as Anna Pavlova, Dore Hoyer and Iris Scaccheri, as well as musicians such as Pietro Mascagni, Richard Strauss (with the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra), Arthur Rubinstein, Andrés Segovia, Alexander Brailowsky, Claudio Arrau, Pablo Casals, and Yehudi Menuhin.