In English, the most common way of indicating existence is by using the structure there + to be. Normally there is an adverb of place. But the introductory there has no adverbial sense and is just used to introduce the sentence.
- There is a hole in my shoes. (More natural than A hole is in my shoes.)
- There is a bridge over the river.
There are is used with plural subjects.
- There are two people in the room. (More natural than Two people are in the room.)
- Once upon a time there were three wicked brothers.
- There have been many such rumours.
- There must be a reason for it.
Introductory there can also be used with some intransitive verbs, or with an intransitive verb + to be.
- There seems to be some misunderstanding between them.
- There happened to be no one nearby to help her.
- There fell a deep silence upon them.
- There grew a warm friendship between the two.
There is not normally used in a sentence with a definite subject (e.g. a noun with a definite article, or a proper name)
- The door was open. (NOT There was the door open.)
- Peter was at the party. (NOT There was Peter at the party.)