The Daile Theatre is an outstanding part of Latvian culture, with a wealth of traditions that date back nearly 80 years. Initially the Daile Theatre was housed in a building at Lāčplēša street 25, but in 1977 the theatre moved to a purpose-built structure at Brīvības street 75. The construction of the building was a fulfilment of one of Eduards Smiļģis' dreams. The building has a main hall with 1,000 seats, a smaller hall with 200 seats, and, since 1998,
the Chamber hall with 100 seats. This makes the Daile Latvia's largest theatre. There are 44 actors in the company, although other actors are invited to appear in specific performances. The name of the Daile theatre is firmly linked to such stars in the Latvian theatrical firmament as director
Eduards Smiļģis, legendary playwright and poet Rainis, major stage stars Lilita Bērziņa, Vija Artmane, Harijs Liepiņš, Eduards Pāvuls, and many others. The outstanding directors Pēteris Pētersons and Arnolds Liniņš have worked here, too. The curtain on the stage of the Daile Theatre first opened on november 19, 1920, when the troupe performed Rainis' tragedy "Indulis and Ārija". The performance was directed by the artistic director and very soul of the ensemble, Eduards Smiļģis. In "Indulis and Ārija", Rainis (1865 - 1929) wrote: "We will be as great as our will". This became the theatre's slogan in its work, both when it had to fight for its existence, and when it was free to stage the work of globally known playwrights and Latvian authors alike. The most important plays were directed by Smiļģis himself - an outstanding director, a wonderful actor and an erudite man who, in staging performances, called on stage design, movement and musical consultants such as
Jānis Muncis, Felicita Ertnere and - themselves great theatrical artists and key personalities in Latvia's cultural life. Smiļģis felt, that the most important elements in the performing arts are clarity of thought, simplicity and passion. Every one of his memorable stagings affirmed these principles on the boards. The Daile Theatre is also distinquished by the fact that it is the only major theatre in Latvia to present regular productions of modern foreign plays. The theatre has also made a point of offering opportunities to young directors such as Dž.Dž.Džilindžers, Valdis Liepiņš, Dainis Gaidelis, as well as more seasoned talents, such as Arnis Ozols, Mihails Gruzdovs and Jānis Streičs. Links have been established with Latvian directors who live in other countries - Andris Blekte, Laimonis Siliņš and Gunārs Vērenieks. The Daile has performed in many other countries, including the united states, Canada, Poland, Finland, Sweden, Germany, Estonia and Australia. The Daile Theatre has proven its sustainability with full honour in this era. The theatre has held on to its audiences and has increased the number of new productions each season. The bases for these achievements is a synthesis between traditions and the search for new ways.