The Roman Theater of Volterra is one of the most beautiful and best preserved in Italy. It is situated in the archaeological area of Vallebona, near the medieval walls.
Brought to light by excavations conducted in the 50s by Enrico Fiumi, who used as workers a team of patients hospitalized at the Psychiatric Hospital of Volterra. From an epigraph we learn that two members of the Cecina family of Volterra built it at their own expense in the first century AD.
Of the Roman Theatre are still visible 19 rows of seats of the central and lower sectors, built in local limestone and partly preserved. The contrast between the white color of the steps and the black of the stairs created a chromatic effect. The two rows of steps lower down were made of marble and bore the names of the most influential noble families of Volterra.
The Theater ceased its activity at the end of the 3rd century, probably because of an earthquake that made to collapse part of the structure. Its abandonment, however, allowed the construction of a large spa of which only the lower part of the walls and some mosaics have been preserved.
Here every summer takes place the International Festival, founded by the late Giorgio Albertazzi. Every year a prestigious Jury assigns the prizes “Ombra della Sera” to important personalities of the show business and culture.