14 Teatro Caupolicán
Alberto Cruz Eyzaguirre, architect.
San Diego 850, Santiago.
Built in 1935 as a “theater-circus” by the Caja de Previsión de Empleados Públicos (a pension fund for public workers), and follows the typology of circus, with its circular arena and the seats raising around it. When finished, it was the first place dedicated to popular and massive events. During its long history, it has received hundreds of acts, from popular operas like Gioachino Rossini’s The Barber of Seville to top figures in popular music, like Louis Armstrong, Bill Haley, Lucho Gatica, Claudio Arrau or even The Prodigy. Besides that, it has served as the venue of important political gatherings, the most celebre of which was the anti-Pinochet concentration of 1980 where former president Eduardo Frei Montalva gave a famous speech denouncing the dictatorship’s attempt to impose a new constitution.