Berlin’s Staatsoper on the historic Boulevard Unter den Linden, was first inaugurated as the Hofoper (court opera) in 1742 under the Prussian King Friedrich II. The largest house in Europe at the time, it was subsequently destroyed three times - by fire in the 19th Century, and twice during WWII. Rebuilt in 1955 by the East German government, the opera house closed again in 2010 for extensive renovations, reopening in 2017 as a state-of-the-art, 1356-seat venue. Great composers such as Mendelssohn-Bartholdy, Mayerbeer and Strauss once conducted here. Daniel Barenboim is the current Music Director and Principal Conductor of the resident Staatskapelle Berlin, the third oldest orchestra in the world.