The Queen’s Theatre at Versailles

Sunday Snapshot:


The Queen's Theatre at Versailles


Marie Antoinette loved to perform.

As a child in Vienna her family had often put on performances and she wanted to keep this tradition alive whilst she was in France. In 1780 she had her favourite architect, Richard Mique, build this small private theatre, the Petite Théâtre de la Reine, so that performances could take place for her husband and members of the court.

You’ll find it not far from the Petit Trianon, a small building with an unassuming exterior which belies the impression of opulence inside. Faux marble, pasteboard statues and painted gold trimmings all combined to take her into another world where she could indulge in her love of theatre, ballet and opera.


The Queen's Theatre at Versailles

A rare glimpse into her private world.




Related articles on Versailles
Marie Antoinette’s Playground
Marie Antoinette’s Farm
The King’s Private Apartments at Versailles 



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19 Responses to The Queen’s Theatre at Versailles

  1. Krista February 17, 2013 at 7:00 pm #

    Beautiful! I loved seeing this spot when I visited Versailles. 🙂

    • [email protected] February 17, 2013 at 7:17 pm #

      Thanks Krista. You never know what little treasure you are going to find at Versailles do you!

  2. Red Nomad OZ February 18, 2013 at 5:38 am #

    Now that’s a marvellously exotic sight I’m never going to experience downunder!! Nothing like a little OTT self indulgence, huh?!

    • [email protected] February 18, 2013 at 11:41 pm #

      Indulgence in the extreme, Red but what fun! One day we’re going to have to get you on that big OS trip!

  3. The Wanderfull Traveler February 20, 2013 at 5:41 am #

    Very cool! I do hope you enter some of these great Versailles sights in my next #WTFrance2013 giveaway in March! Versailles is top of my list of places to visit while in France.


    • [email protected] February 21, 2013 at 12:02 am #

      You’ll love the day at Versailles Murissa. Don’t miss Marie Antoinette’s playground…Grand Trianon, Petit Trianon and the Hamlet.

  4. jan February 20, 2013 at 7:00 am #

    A beautifully written post – I learned something about her that I did not know before.

    • [email protected] February 21, 2013 at 12:04 am #

      The theatre was a complete surprise to me and so beautiful and intimate. It’s so easy to imagine Marie Antoinette on stage here!

  5. Johanna at ZigaZag February 20, 2013 at 8:36 am #

    Fascinating! Your pictures just ooze the promise of stories waiting to be told and rumours yet to be discovered. How marvellous it must have been to visit in person and really get a feel for what it must have been like all those years ago.

    • [email protected] February 21, 2013 at 12:06 am #

      Thanks Jo. Versailles is full of stories and rumours. Our guide had a degree in the life of Marie Antoinette so it was great to hear the little tit bits of life at Versailles at this time

  6. Cathy Sweeney February 20, 2013 at 12:30 pm #

    Certainly not a surprise that Marie Antoinette like to perform as a child, is it? Would love to see the theater at the Petit Trianon and imagine the performances back then.

    • [email protected] February 21, 2013 at 12:09 am #

      No surprises there Cathy! A great guide certainly makes it easy to imagine here life in these days. You can almost see her treading the boards!

  7. Karen (Back Road Journal) February 20, 2013 at 9:47 pm #

    It has been years since I visited Versailles. Thanks for a beautiful reminder that I need to go back.

    • [email protected] February 21, 2013 at 12:13 am #

      I loved going back after a few years Karen. It was as though I was seeing it for the first time again. We also saw the King’s private apartments which I hadn’t seen before. A great day!

  8. jill February 21, 2013 at 7:49 am #

    Beautiful! I’ve never been to Paris but I’d love to someday. I love seeing palaces like these and imagine the people who lived (and live) there.

    • [email protected] February 21, 2013 at 12:48 pm #

      I’m sure you’ll fall in love with Paris when you do visit. You must visit Versailles. It is a window into another world especially Marie Antoinette’s domain of which the Theatre is a part. I can just imagine her on stage here! Thanks you for your visit and comment.

  9. Life Images by Jill February 22, 2013 at 1:48 pm #

    what a delightful theatre. We learnt a little bit about Marie Antoinette on our visit to Paris and France in 2005 with our French friend, but we didn’t see this theatre. We did visit Versailles, but I didn’t know about this Theatre. Is it there? So much to see at Versailles. What an opulant place!
    Thanks for stopping by my blog today. Have a wonderful week.

    • [email protected] February 25, 2013 at 12:03 am #

      The theatre is a short distance from the Petit Trianon. It would be so easy to miss it if you didn’t know it was there. There is so much to see..we’ve been back a few times now and each time we seem to find something new!

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