The Arriaga Theatre is a very beautiful building. Inspired in the Paris Opera, it was the work of the municipal architect Joaquín Rucoba and was opened in 1890.
In 1902 it was named in honour of the Bilbao musician Juan Crisóstomo Arriaga, known as the Spanish Mozart because of his talent (at 13 he composed his first opera and shortly before the age of 20 he died of tuberculosis). Today, the Arriaga continuously hosts the city’s programmes of music and theatre. Like other buildings in the Old Quarter of Bilbao, it was badly damaged in the floods of 1983.