Although the ‘theatre of the three great tragedians’ has attracted more scholarly attention than any other theatrical structure, and justifiably so, due primarily to the lack of firm archaeological evidence, the arguments presented in the research are often utterly contradictory. Utilizing the recent unprecedented partial discovery of traces left by the much-vaunted ikria bench posts, in conjunction with a re-examination of the monument and the literary and epigraphic evidence pertaining to it, this paper seeks to reconstruct the morphological and functional features of the theatre of Dionysus in the era of the three great tragedians, and the changes made to it between the late 6th century and ca. 350 bc . More specifically, it is shown that this innovative theatre was built as a permanent structure ab initio, while matters pertaining to the monumentality of the Periclean theatre are explored, along with the attempt to start building a stone theatre whose design was integrated with that of the Odeum of Pericles (by Ictinus?), the evidence of innovative architectural solutions, and — centrally — morphological and functional issues pertaining to the much-discussed ‘tragic stage’.