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To the right-hand side of the Bolshoi Theatre stands the Maly, or Small Theatre. There is a monument to Ostrovsky outside – the outstanding playwright of the C19th. The author is depicted sitting in a chair in a warm coat, pencil in hand.
The Maly, or Small Theatre, is one of the oldest in Russia. It was founded in the mid-C18th under the patronage of Moscow University, by the Imperial Decree of Empress Elizaveta Petrovna. The first performers were students of the University's Academy. The Petrovsky Theatre, which later became the Bolshoi Theatre, emerged out of the Maly Theatre troupe. In 1805 the theatre burned down, and there was nowhere to perform. The performers were recruited instead for the Imperial Theatre of Moscow.
In 1824 the architect Bové – who had built the Bolshoi – worked on turning a nearby aristocratic mansion into a theatre too. Thus the Imperial Moscow Theatre at last acquired their permanent home – named The Small Theatre, since the Bolshoi was the “Big Theatre”. At first the word “Small” wasn't written with a capital “S” - it was only “small” in relation to the Bolshoi. But soon the words “Bolshoi” and “Maly” acquired capital letters for their names. Until 1824 there was one unified troupe of players performing in both theatres, and appearing in performance of all kinds. For a long time there was an underground passage linking the two theatre buildings.
Moscow is the capital of the ancient and modern Russian state. It has been playing crucial role for centuries. Here you can face all episodes of rich and gorgeous Russian history.
The city is full of historical buildings, monuments, cathedrals, museums and parks. It started many centuries ago from the Kremlin – medieval city-fortress overlooking the Moskva River. Now it is not only the government seat but open air museum. Behind the tall red brick walls palaces, cathedrals and museums are hidden. You can get there through one of the gates and walk along the streets that saw Ivan the Terrible, Boris Godunov, Peter the Great and all other Romanovs, and the Soviet leaders.
You can visit all the cathedrals on Sobornaya (Cathedral) Square, climb Ivan the Great Bell Tower, take photos of the Tzar Bell and Tzar Cannon, see state regalia, ceremonial vestments and gold and silver relics in the world-known treasury-house – the Armoury Chamber. To say more, the Kremlin and its vicinities are on the UNESCO World Heritage list.
We would like to advise you not to concentrate on the Kremlin only. Now you can get out of the Kremlin through the Spasskiye Gate and find yourself on Red Square – the main square of the country where Victory Day parades take place. In winter there is a skating rink with some kind of souvenir bazar. Red Square is famous for being the part of so called Kitai-Gorod – the second ring of fortified walls. Here you will see the beautiful fairy-tale St. Basil’s Cathedral. It is open for tourists and it’s worth visiting. Other places that pay tourists’ attention are GUM (the main center for shopaholics), Lenin’s Mausoleum, the State History Museum and the small Cathedral of the Kazan Icon of Our Lady. If you go along Nikolskaya Street, you will get to Lubyanka Square with the imposing buildings of former KGB and the biggest in Russia Children's World Department Store.
If you decide to go through the Resurrection Gate you will find yourself on Manezhnaya (Manege) Square at the entrance to the Alexander Garden. It’s a large pedestrian open space and a nice place to walk and relax near the fountains. Underground Trade Centre ”Okhotny Ryad” or “the Hunter’s Row” is a paradise for shopping. You can continue your walk towards Arbat or Tverskaya Street. There are also fine buildings to visit and to take pictures of: The Shilov Art Gallery, hotels “Moskva”, “Nationale”, Pashkov's House, The Former House of the Moscow State Duma etc.
If you decide to turn round Georgy Zhukov’s horse monument you’ll occur on Revolution Square where you can visit the Museum of Patriotic War of 1812. From there it’s very easy to get to Teatralnaya or “Theatre” Square limited by the Metropol Hotel, The Bolshoi and the Maly Theatres. In the center you will find a beautiful fountain by Vitali.
All these sites and even more you will be able to visit and explore with knowledgeable audio excursion with offline map from Your Audio Guide “Attractions around the Kremlin”. You will find Moscow very pleasant for spending holidays.