The Ancient Theater in Ohrid is located below the Samuil’s fortress near the Upper Gate and the church Holy Mary Perybleptos. It was built at the end of the 3rd century BC, in the period of the late Hellenism, and was intended for displaying dramatic, musical, and poetic representations of the lovers of theatrical art.
The Ancient Theater was built with rich architectural decoration, especially the theater building that was decorated with stone plates that included scenes from the life of gods. On two such marble plates, which are preserved in the Ohrid Museum, the god Dionysus is presented in association with the Muses.
After the Roman conquests of Ohrid in 148 BC, the theater was adapted for the needs of the Roman way of life and was rearranged into an arena for gladiator fights.
At the beginning of the 4th century AD., with the acceptance of Christianity, the theater was destroyed and the material was used for the construction of various objects in the city.
The theater was discovered again after archaeological researches in 1935, and the exact location and size were finally determined in 1959-1960.
In 1999, a project began which had a goal to fully discover the theater and put it into operation. Since 2001, drama performances, musical performances, and various other events are held in the Ancient Theater in Ohrid, mostly during the summer period.