The theater, commissioned by the noble Venetian society, was inaugurated on May 16, 1792. For the occasion, the drama I giuochi d’Agrigento by Giovanni Paisiello and the ballet Amore e Psiche by Onorato Viganò were staged.
In 1813 the owners commissioned the work "Tancredi" from Gioachino Antonio Rossini, which was later a great success with the public. Among the other great composers who brought their works to the stage were Giuseppe Verdi (his "Nabucco" was performed for twenty-five consecutive evenings) and Richard Wagner (who presented the Italian premiere of "L'anello del Nibelungo" in 1883). .
In 1996, due to the famous and traditional fire, the La Fenice orchestra was temporarily hosted by the former theater of San Giovanni Grisostomo known as Malibran.
Collaboration with the Biennale was established in 1930 through the organization of the International Festival of Contemporary Music in Venice.
The fame of an important and prestigious Italian theater is not only linked to the beauty of its hall but also by the capacity of a thousand seats, optimal acoustics, an orchestra and a choir made up of 98 and 66 elements respectively. Each year it attracts a large international and local audience, with its one hundred opera performances per year, a renowned symphony season entrusted to the best international conductors, dance performances and chamber music concerts.
Currently, the arena is owned by the Municipality of Venice while the management is entrusted to the La Fenice Theater Foundation, a private law body which counts among its members the Italian State, the Veneto Region, the Municipality of Venice and numerous public entities. and private individuals; for its activities, it also uses the Malibran Theater, active since 1678.