The Ancient Theatre Archive

The Theatre Architecture of Greece and Rome

Cales (modern Calvi Ristora)


Modern Calvi Ristora, Mainland Italy

Theatre Type

Roman Theatre

Earliest Date

100 BCE

Renovations / Excavations

Earliest Date: 100 BCE. Renovations: 1st Century CE.; In 1st  century CE, outer theatre wall added to reconcile theatre with road. Remains: well-preserved cavea; only footings of seats survive; scene building now excavated (2002).

GPS Coordinates

Seating Capacity

4,000 - 4,500


Cavea Width: 75 meters
Orchestra Width: 27 meters


Roman Cales theatre (modern Calvi Risorta, Italy). One of the earliest free-standing theatres in Rome. Cavea: SE facing; D 75.4 m; lower seating supported by 12 barrel vaults, upper seating supported by 24 barrel vaults; only seating supports remain; seating capacity unknown. Semi-circular orchestra: W 27.4 m, surrounded by curved passage and balteus wall. Orchestra: D c.27.40 m; surrounded by a curved passage and balteus wall. Stage length 41 m; width 7.79 m. 8 aulaeum slots visible. Scaenae frons: exceptionally broad and shallow regia niche. Stage building excavated (2002). (Sear, p 121). Theatre dates from beginning of 1st century B.C. (Sullan); Second phase (including portico): 1st century A.D. (Augustan). (Denard, “The Pompey Project”)


CALES – CALVI RISORTA (Campania). Romano Impero. Accessed 3, 3, 2023.

Denard, Hugh. Cales:The Pompey Project: Accessed 3, 10, 2023.

Sear, Frank. Roman Theatres: An Architectural Study. Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press, 2006. (p121).

Last Update: 03-10-2023