It was founded on the basis of Uzbekistan’s first musical ensemble. This group, originally formed in 1923, was an amateur initiative; later it turned professional and in 1939 a permanent theatre company was established. The present building, completed in 1947, is the largest theatre Uzbekistan. It occupies a central place in Tashkent, dominating one of the main squares. The designer was the distinguished (though at times controversial) Russian architect Alexey Shchusev; the interior decoration is by Uzbek craftsmen and includes superb carving on ganch (type of alabaster) by the Bukharan master Usto Shirin Muradov; part of the labour was carried out by Japanese prisoners of war. The theatre acquired its present name in 1966. Opera and ballet performances are staged here; the repertoire is international and national (Uzbek).
Address: 28 Mustafa Kemal Ataturk Street.