The Toma Caragiu Theatre in Ploieşti is one of the Romania’s top theatre venues. Ploieşti is located at the southern edge of the Carpathian Mountains and is the centre of Romania’s oil industry. The theatre, built in 1949 in the middle of the city, has three stages: the Drama Stage, the “Majestic” Musical Theatre and the “Ciufulici” Puppet Stage.
The main building, modernly equipped with studio stage, rehearsal room and various workshops, serves as the venue for the drama and musical theatres. The puppet stage, which seats an audience of 160, is housed in a smaller building in the immediate vicinity.
The theatre is named after Toma Caragiu (1925-1977), considered one of Romania’s finest actors, who had countless appearances in theatre, film and television. While he played many dramatic roles, he was particularly known for his comedies, in which he consistently supplied comic relief to Romania of the Ceausescu era. Caragiu suffered a tragic death in the Bucharest earthquake of 1977, buried under the rubble of his house. Beginning with the Normandie Festival in France in 1997, the Toma Caragiu Theatre has fostered intensive contacts to theatres in France, Great Britain, Spain and South Korea.
A particular dramaturgical focus lies in staging plays by internationally renowned contemporary authors.
Ever since its Japan tour in 1977, the Toma Caragiu Theatre has taken part in many national and international festivals and has received numerous accolades. The stage designer Victoria Petrovici, for example, was awarded the Biennial of Stage Design in Novi Sad. On consecutive occasions, the theatre received an award given by the Romanian Theatre Association UNITER, which distinguishes the year’s best performances, actors and theatre workers.