Broadway theatre

Under the Broadway [ bɹɑ dweɪ ː ] in New York is defined as the Theater District of Times Square between the 41th and 53rd Street and between Sixth and Ninth Avenue. In this district there are about 40 large theater. Each theater shows a musical or a play; the playing time will not be announced in the rule in advance, but depends on the judgment of critics and audiences. In addition to the Broadway theaters still exist about 1500 off-Broadway and Off-Off -Broadway performances per year in smaller theaters. Due to the generous lighting the street and the square of Broadway was soon called The Great White Way.


Empire Theatre

The first theater, which moved from the previous theater district at Herald Square to Times Square, the Empire was theater. The impresario Charles Frohman, who in the sinking of the Lusitania was killed in 1915, had the building built in 1893 with approximately 1000 seats. It was directly opposite the Opera House opened in 1883 at the Metropolitan Opera, at its old location between 39th and 40th street.

Theatrical Syndicate

With Frohman began in many ways a new time. Not only is he in New York, in London in 1915, had six five and over 200 theaters across the United States, he also changed the nature of the theater business. Together with other businessmen in 1896, he founded the Theatrical Syndicate. While previously designed actors their tours across the USA to own ideas, since then can organize their schedules and secure appointments in advance theater manager, producer and actor. This could occupy a piece of their own ideas with actors Frohman and the other theater owners, and the system, which was later referred to the film as a star system was formed.

Theater -ups

The Broadway experienced between the years 1910 and 1930, a variety of theatrical start-ups. The oldest, continuously recorded theater from this period is opened on November 2, 1903 Lyceum. It was originally called New Lyceum Theatre since the previous Lyceum Theatre in 1885 at the 45th Street and Broadway, was demolished for the new building. It was also the first theater that had electric light throughout the building, built by Thomas Alva Edison.

Depression and the New Deal

The Great Depression of the 1930s and the emergence of sound film led to a serious crisis of Broadway and demanded a re-orientation of the theater.

As part of the New Deal, there was in the time from 1935 to 1939 provides for financial assistance over $ 46 million to fund more than 1,000 productions.

After the war

The creation of the Tony Awards in 1947 demonstrated the desire of the theaters of Broadway, to improve the quality of their pieces. In the 1940s there were new off-Broadway theaters in Greenwich Village first attempts to reach a new audience.

Off- Broadway, Off-Off -Broadway

In the 1950s, off-Broadway theater on Broadway also formed in response to the commercialization of the theater. Many pieces that did not make it to the big stages, were listed on the cheaper off-Broadway theaters. Most of these have between 100 and 500 seats.

From 1985, another type of theaters, the Off-Off -Broadway theaters, scattered all over New York City to make a modern experimental theater developed. The Off-Off -Broadway theater usually have less than 100 seats.

Theatre dying, departure

In the 1980s there was a dying theater on Broadway, but by physical measures, austerity measures and the obligation of big names the crisis is over today.

In 1988, the New York Landmarks Preservation Commission decided to award the most historical theater buildings the status of historic sites.

Springboard to movie

The stage of the Broadway industry, which is traditionally the most important and most profitable in the country, was for the Hollywood film industry has always been a main resource and test track for film material. Countless Hollywood screenplays are adaptations of successful Broadway stage plays.

Also the personal links between Broadway and Hollywood are considerable. Despite large differences in the profile of these two professions, many film actors have their careers started as a stage actor on Broadway (examples: Groucho Marx, Charlton Heston, Robert Redford, Orson Welles, Katharine Hepburn, Burt Lancaster, James Dean, Marlon Brando, Gene Hackman and Grace Kelly ). Others have only become known in Hollywood and then on Broadway have occasionally tried (examples: Elizabeth Taylor and Angela Lansbury ).

Successful musicals on Broadway

Great Broadway successes have included:

  • Hairspray
  • Hello, Dolly!
  • The Lion King
  • Mamma Mia!
  • Mary Poppins
  • My Fair Lady
  • Les Misérables
  • Miss Saigon
  • Oklahoma!
  • The Phantom of the Opera
  • The Producers
  • RENT
  • Beauty and the Beast
  • Sweeney Todd
  • West Side Story
  • Wicked