The Teatro dell’Arancio derives its name from the plant set in the middle of the square opposite the theatre which was guarded by an officer appointed to it, who was chosen every year among the families of the village, and for which he received as remuneration the exemption from the domestic fire tax. It was realised in the last decade of the Seventeenth by the architect Pietro Maggi on a pre-existing structure whose foundations are still visible on the floor of the portico. The interior was entirely of wood and accurately furnished: it had a stage, stalls and three tiers of boxes. There could seat about 250 spectators and every year there was the assignment of the boxes between the Town council and other owners, while common people could seat only on the stalls. According to the communal residents’ formula, the maintenance was up to the town council and to the families owning the boxes, while the management was up to a drama society.
Today there are no remains of its original furnishings, used as wood for the coffins during the Spanish epidemic, between 1916 and 1918. In this period the theatre was not working yet since in the year 1899 the closure was imposed because it did not guarantee any safety for the spectators. It was reopened in 1908, year in which there was the last theatre season. The structure has recently been restored, which has brought back the old entrance of the external stair of the old town council: and it is from 2004, both the rebuilding of the stalls and the stage have let the hall live again (after 96 years) a new theatre season.
The adjoining ancient municipal palace houses a Permanent Exhibition dedicated to Giacomo Pomili, called the Tarpato (Grottammare 1925-1997), whose works which had received international awards, are the result of a spontaneous and original expression, that has to be translated in an elementary style which reveals innate surrealistic and visionary suggestions.