“And scene!” Theater-goers, majors and aficionados, there’s probably no greater place to watch some of the most premier live performances in history, than on Broadway in NYC — home to the original dreamers of the entertainment industry.
If it’s on your Bucket List whilst traveling to the Big Apple, here’s a compilation of the most popular Broadway theaters based on collective reviews and critiques, in order of the highly revered and the crowd favorites.
Important to note: There are 41 official Broadway theaters forming part of the Broadway League in New York. We have also mentioned a few famous, noteworthy off-Broadway theaters that hold their own accolades, and in right, deserve to be mentioned with the top Broadway stars.
All that’s left to do is book your Broadway tickets, then sit back, relax and enjoy the show!
Hot tip: For a comprehensive swoop of the latest shows on stage, check out this updated guide of the best Broadway shows and musicals to see right now!
1 – Radio City Music Hall
From the biggest names in comedy to the hottest musical talent, to drag show extravaganzas, Radio City Music Hall has been a golden entertainment space for nearly 100 years, where some of the most iconic names in their industry have set foot on the Great Stage.
As the largest indoor theater anywhere in the world, gasp as you step inside and marvel at its awe-inspiring architecture (designed in the American modernism style).
It’s also home to the iconic annual Christmas Spectacular Starring The Radio City Rockettes, and The Radio City Rockettes have been performing here since 1933!
Join the other 300 million guests who have arrived at the Music Hall to watch a live performance! It’s one for the books.
Address: 1260 6th Avenue
Opened in: 1932
Past productions: Dave Chappelle, Chris Rock, Diana Ross in concert
Current show: Christmas Spectacular Starring the Radio City Rockettes
Coming soon: Maggie Rogers’ The Feral Joy Tour; Ricky Gervais: Armageddon
2 – Gershwin Theatre
Originally opening as the Uris in the early 70s and later changing its name to The Gershwin (named after famous American composer, George Gershwin and his brother, Ira Gershwin who was a lyricist) when it opened it gained the title of the first official theater to be built on Broadway in nearly 50 years.
Since then, it’s hosted musicals, ballets, plays and concerts, and 2023 will mark the 20th year of the long-standing musical; Wicked.
No matter which seat in the house you choose, be it the front row, near the orchestra or by the mezzanine overhang area, you’re guaranteed a fine time at Broadway’s largest theater.
Address: 222 West 51st Street
Opened in: 1972
Past productions: Riverdance on Broadway, Oklahoma!
Current show: Wicked
3 – New Amsterdam Theatre
Shortly after the new Amsterdam Theatre opened its doors, it soon became a prime-time location. Enduring wars and the Great Depression, the years to follow saw a quieter time for this theater.
Then, in 1993, Disney Theatrical Productions stepped onto the scene and took over the runnings of the show. That meant from here on out, the musicals and shows were all based on some of Disney’s biggest cinematic blockbusters.
Today, this is the theater to watch Aladdin.
Other than here to witness the spectacle, you can choose to take a tour of the theater — which runs separately from its shows. Investigate the Art Deco architecture, restored art and a bit about its past
Address: 214 West 42nd Street
Opened in: 1903
Past productions: A Midsummer Night’s Dream, The Lion King
Current show: Aladdin
4 – Majestic Theatre
Unlike most of the other theaters on Broadway, the Majestic Theatre was commissioned to be designed in a modern Spanish style — which was very unusual in comparison to the regular American buildings in NYC in the 1920s.
Originally, this was a three-theater complex, all planned in the same style of terra-cotta colored walls, arched windows, stylized motifs and ornately decorated bricks.
It only makes sense that the performances here hint at the (ever) dramatic which leads to the next point … It would be kind of criminal not to mention the theater’s ongoing, multiple Tony-Award-winning production; The Phantom of the Opera, debuting here in 1988!
This marks the longest-showing production on Broadway to date!
Address: 245 West 44th Street
Opened in: 1927
Past productions: The Act, 42nd Street
Current show: The Phantom of the Opera
5 – Minskoff Theatre
From Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat to West Side Story, what mega-hit show hasn’t the Minskoff hosted?!
Unlike many of the theaters that are located on the streetside, this option is situated on the third floor of a 55-story block and built in the 1970s, it’s considered one of the more modernized Broadway theaters.
For example, instead of stairwells, there are escalators to transport spectators between the different theater levels.
It still retains that old-world charm feeling — just look at its Grand Foyer — and if possible, book a seat as close to the orchestra up front for the most immersive experience.
Address: 200 West 45th Street
Opened in: 1973
Past productions: Fiddler on the Roof, Dance of the Vampires, Saturday Night Fever, Peter Pan, Black and Blue.
Current show: The Lion King
6 – Beacon Theatre
Although Beacon Theatre is another on the list not part of the official Broadway org, it’s one of NYC’s favorite choices for an evening jam-packed full of entertaining moments, tummy-aching laughs and live music.
The esteemed venue is one of the larger spaces, and so it’s been favored for rock concerts for decades where legends have played like the Rolling Stones and Coldplay.
Established in the 1920s, it also sports the heavily adorned Art Deco style — a trend of the time it seems.
Address: 2124 Broadway, New York
Opened in: 1929
Past productions: Bono, Demi Lovato, Dan Levy and Eugene Levy
Current shows: Jerry Seinfeld, Brett Eldredge
Coming soon: Monica Bellucci, Nikki Glaser: The Good Girl Tour, Dita Von Teese GLAMONATRIX
7 – Eugene O’Neill Theatre
Favored for its seating design — which in theater means something — you won’t have to worry about obtrusive views in front of you and not being able to watch the show comfortably at the Eugene O’Neill Theatre.
Undergoing a few name changes in its time since it first opened in the roaring 20s, it settled on its current one in 1959 — it was first named the Forrest Theatre and then to the Coronet Theatre in 1945.
It’s favored for its world-class lighting and if you’re lucky, you may just be upgraded from the mezzanine to orchestra seats — which are among the best in the house.
Address: 230 West 49th Street
Opened in: 1925
Capacity: around 1,100
Past productions: Mayflowers, Grease, Annie, Sweeny Todd
Current show: The Book of Mormon
8 – Winter Garden Theatre
As one of the oldest Broadway theaters, the Winter Garden Theatre is massively iconic, but that’s not the only interesting historical titbit. The building in which the playhouse is now built was once the American Horse Exchange (built in 1896).
Fun Fact: Back then, Times Square as we know it today (once called Longacre) was the hub for the horse and carriage trade in the city. When the space was converted into a theater, the architect specifically kept elements of the horse exchange building, embellishing it with garden motifs.
Address: 1634 Broadway, New York
Opened in: 1911
Past productions: Follies, Cats, Mamma Mia!, School of Rock
Current shows: The Music Man
Coming soon: Back to the Future: The Musical
9 – Al Hirschfeld Theatre
Enjoy cocktails throughout the evening which suit the glamorous, glitzy and sometimes sexy stage performances held at the Al Hirschfeld Theatre.
Depending on what show is running (which is usually long-standing), the theater is transformed to suit. For example, book ‘Can Can’ tables in front if you’re here to marvel over Moulin Rouge.
The theater was named after Al Hirschfeld, a known iconic and beloved figure in the industry, famed for his black and white caricature drawings of Broadway. It only received its name change in 2003.
Address: 302 West 45th Street
Opened in: 1924
Past productions: Kinky Boots, Kiss Me, Kate
Current show: Moulin Rouge
10 – St. James Theatre
Donned in glamorous red and gold, the St. James Theatre was restored to its former glory in 1999 after 72 years of existence. It’s one of those classic, over-the-top settings which adds to the ambiance and the whole grand old-school idea of a night at the theater.
But that’s not to say it hasn’t seen its historical moments during its years. One of its accolades is the first theater in America that showcased a full-length production of Hamlet.
Some of the most beloved musicals and Broadway shows have been performed at the St. James (named after its London counterpart) and even a few Tony awards have been collected from the performances on show here.
Address: 246 West 44th Street
Opened in: 1927
Past productions: Hello, Dolly!, The King and I, Oklahoma!, Li’l Abner, The Pajama Game, My One and Only, The Producers.
Current show: Into the Woods
Coming soon: New York, New York
11 – Broadway Theatre
It’s hard to forget the Broadway Theatre’s name, seemingly the most obvious and easiest to remember, and it’s the only star on the list with the title of Broadway in its keeping.
So how did this theater get its name? Upon opening, it was primarily used for screening films, and the theater’s massive stage was built not for shows but to hold an impressive orchestra to conduct alongside silent films and movies that were screened here.
When the 30s rolled in, the film house changed its name to the ‘Broadway’ because of its location fronting Broadway Street. Today, it remains one of five theaters with this locale.
From 1940, the playhouse was in full swing and major stage productions began utilizing the Broadway Theatre more and more.
Address: 1681 Broadway
Opened in: 1924
Past productions: The New Yorkers, Funny Girl, Evita, Les Miserables, Shrek, Cinderella, Miss Saigon
Current show: no shows scheduled
12 – Ambassador Theatre
Yet another theater owned by America’s oldest and one of the most famous professional theater companies, the Shubert Organization, the Ambassador Theatre is a special one.
Many of the theaters that the Shubert company now owns were purchased after they had been running for a few years. However, this is the only one of four theaters that the Shuberts built themselves on 48th and 49th Streets after WWI that remains.
The original bricks still facade the front of the theater (adding authenticity), and this playhouse is quite unusual to some. Built on a small plot in the city, the architects had to create a hexagonal-shaped auditorium — with limited stage-wing space.
But no one is complaining when watching Bedazzling Chicago — on show here since 2003.
Address: 219 West 49th Street
Opened in: 1921
Past productions: Topdog/Underdog, Dreamgirls, You Know I Can’t Hear You When the Water’s Running
Current show: Chicago
13 – Neil Simon Theatre
Named after the genius, American playwright and winner of more combined Oscar and Tony Award nominations than any other before him, the Neil Simon Theatre stage has also hosted three of the famous writer’s plays between 1985 and 1992.
Interestingly, the theater was renamed before any of Neil Simon’s productions showed here, and it wasn’t until 1983 that its name did change — initially called the Alvin.
For theater buffs and drama kids; the playhouse forms one of nine of the Nederlander Organization theaters on Broadway.
Musical and dance performances are its jam.
Address: 250 West 52nd Street
Opened in: 1927
Past productions: Funny Face, The Music Man, Swan Lake, Hairspray, Cats, A Tribute to the Beatles
Current show: MJ The Musical
14 – Shubert Theatre
Even if you’re not in NYC to see a live show, walking around Broadway is fascinating — especially for those inspired by architecture. The Shubert Theatre is a unique one to compare and was specifically designed in the Venetian Renaissance style (lasting from the 1400s to the late 1500s.)
If you are here for dramatic acting, the interiors of the auditorium are grandly stylized and adorned with heavy frescoes on the ceiling. It makes sense as in its earliest days a few Shakespeares were shown here.
Home of the Shubert Organization’s executive offices (located in the office blocks above the Shubert Theatre) the private road that connects 44th and 45th Streets (where another one of their theaters is placed) is nicknamed “Shubert Alley.”
Address: 225 West 44th Street
Opened in: 1913
Past productions: Hamlet, Othello, A Chorus Line, Chicago, Memphis, Matilda the Musical, To Kill a Mockingbird
Current show: Some Like It Hot
15 – Richard Rodgers Theatre
If musicals are your thing, the Richard Rodgers Theatre is an undeniable option, steeped in some pretty epic theatrical history.
Since its beginnings it’s been the stage for both plays as well as mega-hit musicals, and seems that stage performances of the latter are preferred — and always a sure win.
Not only that, it’s named after the acclaimed American composer, Richard Rodgers (another testament to this theater’s strings with music).
Celebrities from our era that have graced its stage include Scarlett Johansson in ‘Cat on a Hot Tin Roof’, Robin Williams in ‘Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo’ and Orlando Bloom in ‘Romeo and Juliet’.
Address: 226 West 46th Street
Opened in: 1,925
Past productions: The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas, Nine, Chicago, In the Heights, Tarzan
Current show: Hamilton
16 – Hulu Theater at Madison Square Garden
If you can’t keep up with all the name changes that the Hulu Theater at Madison Square Garden has had since its first days in the 60s, you’ll at least remember the big names that have entered the arena at the iconic Madison Square Garden entertainment complex.
From Eddie Murphy to Mike Tyson, Fat Joe and Ja Rule (who held a hip-hop battle off here in 2021), the list of shows, events and musicals is impressive …
To this day the Hulu Theatre is utilized as a space for sporting events, concerts, shows and other events like hosting the finale of Survivor: All-Stars.
Arriving at the theater you’ll notice there are no separated levels, and the seating plan was dsigned as one level in a classic auditorium style — with the exception of the private boxes on each side of the theater.
Address: 4 Pennsylvania Plaza, New York, NY, 10001
Opened in: 1968
Past productions: Peter Pan, Wizard of Oz, A Christmas Story: The Musical, Grinch! The Musical, Sesame Street Live!, We Will Rock You
Current show: no shows scheduled
Coming soon: April Fools Comedy Show, Los Tigres Del Norte, PAW Patrol Live! Heroes Unite
17 – Lunt-Fontanne Theatre
As the age of cinema began to take over America in the 1930s and 40s, the original playhouse — called The Globe — began screening films for more than 20 years!
If its OG name sounds familiar, it’s because it was named after Shakespeare’s theater over the pond, The Globe. In 1958, the entire space was torn down and completely renovated and rebuilt.
It was only fitting for a new name to follow, and hence it gained its new name, the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre. Since then, it’s continued to showcase some of the biggest Broadway shows and musicals.
Address: 205 West 46th Street
Opened in: 1910
Past productions: A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Finding Neverland; Motown: The Musical, The Addams Family, Beauty and the Beast, The Little Mermaid
Current show: no shows scheduled
Coming soon: Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street
18 – Lyric Theatre
Calling all (Harry) Potter Heads! Welcome to the official stage of the magical Harry Potter and the Cursed Child — and by “official” we mean the setup of the Lyric Theatre (and its stage) was renovated and specifically transformed in 2018 into the world of wizards, which remains its permanent show.
It boasts modern technology, an incredible sound system and a massive stage.
It has a fascinating past and it is one of the newer theaters that comprise the official Broadway list in NYC. Its building, however, is a little older than that and in fact, the now-playhouse is a combination of two old theaters built into one.
These were the original Lyric Theatre (opening in 1903 and closing in 1993) and the Apollo Theatre (which opened in 1910, then closed in 1933 and reopened as a concert hall, and renamed the New Apollo until it was permanently shut down).
Address: 213 West 42nd Street
Opened in: 1998
Past productions: 42nd Street, Cirque du Soleil Paramour, Spider-Man Turn Off the Dark
Current show: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
19 – New World Stages
If you’re traveling to the Big Apple with the little ones and are itching for a theatrical experience, New World Stages is renowned for its immersive and award-winning shows.
Not just one stage, there are five theaters within the performing arts complex that complete it, so you’re always guaranteed to discover a fun show or event to suit all tastes.
Whether it be a Pulitzer Prize-earning show, a Guinness World Record-setting endeavor or a Tony Award-winning performance, New World Stages has seen it all.
The theaters all share a common lobby … Sip on a cocktail from its bar here or mosey around the art gallery before the concert begins. New World Stages hosts off-Broadway productions.
Address: 340 West 50th StreetOpened in: 2004
Capacity: Stage 1: 499, Stage 2: 350, Stage 3: 499, Stage 4: 350 and Stage 5: 199
Past productions: Rock of Ages, Not That Jewish, Jersey Boys
Current shows: Fiddler on the Roof in Yiddish, Gazillion Bubble Show, A Sherlock Carol,
The Play That Goes Wrong Summary, Katsura Sunshine’s Rakugo
Coming soon: Anthony Rapp’s Without You
20 – Stephen Sondheim Theatre
For those that live that totally eco-friendly lifestyle, you’ll be happy to know that the Stephen Sondheim Theatre is the first LEED-certified (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) theater on Broadway, incorporating sustainable design into their productions and setup.
Formerly known as the Henry Miller’s Theater, under new ownership circa 1998, the building received an upgrade, and the famous Cabaret was set to show here. After a construction issue, the theater closed and then only reopened again in 2009.
One year later it was retitled the Stephen Sondheim Theater. Thanks to the major renovation, the space is favored for its excellent acoustics, yet it still retains facets of its old-school charms.
Address: 124 West 43rd StreetOpened in: 1918
Past productions: Cabaret, Our Town, The Pee-wee Herman Show, Beautiful: The Carole King Musical, Mrs. Doubtfire
Current show: & Juliet
21 – Imperial Theatre
With a dream of making the Imperial Theater a stage for musical wonders, its Herbert Krapp design (favored by Shubert Org theaters) suits these types of shows.
Walking inside, you can’t help but notice the over-the-top ceiling motifs, or the elaborate floral balustrades.
Shaped like a rectangle, the seating space and plan are cozier than some other playhouses, but it makes it more intimate and you’re never too far from the stage. There are 20 boxes in total.
Address: 249 West 45th StreetOpened in: 1923
Past productions: Oliver!, Fiddler on the Roof, Dreamgirls, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, Les Misérables
Current show: no show scheduled
Coming soon: Bad Cinderella
22 – Lena Horne Theatre
Iconic; the Lena Horne Theatre became the first-ever official Broadway theater to be named after an African American female when it underwent renaming in 2022.
(Lena Horne was a famous American actress, singer, dancer and civil rights activist who worked for more than 70 years in showbiz.)
Formerly known as the Mansfield, and then the Brooks Atkinson Theatre, the auditorium has undergone renovations to its decor, and the stunning, sparkling original chandelier was put back into place, restoring it to its former glory.
Address: 256 West 47th StreetOpened in: 1926
Past productions: Waitress, Peter and the Starcatcher, Grease!, Jane Eyre
Current show: SIX
23 – New York City Center
If you’re going to spend a night out getting cultural, is ballet your preferred show of choice? Perhaps it’s another form of dance (recital)? Maybe it’s acting that steals your heart? Or is it an evening of song that sends shivers down your spine?
Whatever your preference, the New York City Center has a musical, play or dance performance for you.
Since 2004, the magical ‘Fall for Dance Festival’ has been held here annually, and the center is a regular keeper to the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater and the Manhattan Theatre Club.
Dance productions set inside the Moorish Revival-architecture style theater are well-favored and leave a lasting impression.
Address: 131 West 55th StreetOpened in: 1943
Past productions: Romeo and Juliet, Macbeth, West Side Story, The Music Man, Encores!
Current shows: Fall for Dance Festival, Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater
Coming soon: Encores! Dear World, Hong Kong Ballet | Romeo + Juliet, Flamenco Festival, The National Ballet Of Canada
24 – Broadhurst Theatre
Plenty of theaters on Broadway have undergone name changes, later named after famous composers, playwrights, actors and actresses. The Broadhurst Theatre is one of the few that was built and named by a playwright himself — and whose name still remains recognizably intact.
Not to be confused with the Gerald Schoenfeld Theatre (also an official theater part of the Broadway League), both theaters were designed and built similarly by the same architect, Herbert J. Krapp, and opened at the same time.
Plus, they’re located super close to one another!
Entering the Broadhurst, take a second to appreciate the Greek-style cornices and friezes and its grand Doric columns before getting ready for the opening act.
Address: 235 West 44th StreetOpened in: 1917
Past productions: Misalliance, Cabaret, Fosse, Into the Woods, The History Boys, The Merchant of Venice, Anastasia
Current show: A Beautiful Noise, The Neil Diamond Musical
25 – August Wilson Theatre
Is it still the streets of New York or a tiny alleyway in Florence? Standing in stark contrast to the dark, gray and heavily cladded brick buildings around it, the August Wilson Theatre indeed takes inspiration from the villas of Tuscany in its exterior design — so it all makes sense!
Constructed by the distinguished Theatre Guild theatrical society in the 1920s, its first ever opening night was to Caesar and Cleopatra, and it continued to reign in the biggest hits on Broadway, as well as stars.
Foremost, it started out as the Guild Theatre, then the ANTA, then the Virginia, before finally sticking with the August Wilson Theatre (named after the American playwright).
Address: 245 West 52nd StreetOpened in: 1925
Past productions: Jersey Boys, Little Women, Groundhog Day, My Fair Lady, City of Angels
Current show: Funny Girl
26 – Walter Kerr Theatre
For theater-goers that prefer a smaller setting and a more intimate show, the Walter Kerr Theatre is one of the tiniest Broadway theaters on the list.
Jumping back and forth between theater and movie house, it wasn’t until 1983 that the building took its place back as a Broadway theater.
In its earliest days, The Ritz (its original name) was a Shubert-owned playhouse, but nearly 15 years after opening, ABC and CBS stepped onto the scene and utilized the theater as a recording studio.
Naturally, starting off under the Shubert Organization, it too boasts the classic (and typical) Herbert J. Krapp design features.
Address: 219 West 48th StreetOpened in: 1921
Past productions: Proof, The Piano Lesson, A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder, The Crucible, Amélie, Springsteen on Broadway
Current show: Hadestown
27 – Marquis Theatre
The 80s may seem like a forever and a ago for some, but in the New York Broadway category, it’s not actually that long ago … Thus, although the Marquis Theatre only opened in the late 80s, it’s still one of the latest theaters to be built on Broadway.
As a newcomer, this one is situated inside the Marriott Marquis Hotel, instead of being a standalone theater.
Like the other few Broadway institutes constructed toward the end of the 20th Century, the Marquis possesses world-class acoustics, modern features, comfortable seating and a spacious backstage area — which the cast really appreciates!
Address: 1535 BroadwayOpened in: 1986
Past productions: Me and My Girl, Gypsy, Man of La Mancha, Damn Yankees, Victor/Victoria, Peter Pan, Annie Get Your Gun
Current show: Beetlejuice
Coming soon: Once Upon a One More Time
28 – Lyceum Theatre
Ladies and gentlemen, introducing the grand Lyceum Theatre; the oldest-running theater that’s left on Broadway. For this fact alone, it’s iconic!
Designed only three years after the turn of the 19th century, its Beaux-Arts architecture is a fine example of the extravagant style that was revered in this Parisian-born style.
(If there was a saying to suit the era, it would be ‘go big or go home.’)
If you’ve never been to the theater and have imagined grand ideas in your mind, this is exactly the setting you’ve been picturing.
Address: 149 West 45th StreetOpened in: 1,903
Past productions: Born Yesterday, I Am My Own Wife, Is He Dead?, Disgraced, The Play That Goes Wrong
Current show: A Strange Loop
29 – The Public Theater
Once the home of the public Astor Library, the Public Theater now serves as the headquarters of this arts organization (founded by Joseph Papp in 1954).
When the organization first began, it was initially called the Shakespeare Workshop.
(Every year, the Public is still involved in the famous production of Shakespeare in the Park — run by the Delacorte Theater which Public Theater operates as well at Central Park.)
Then, in 1967, the building opened up its door and stage for its first theatrical performance. It’s continued to showcase major plays, productions and even cultural events and festivals. There are five different theaters within the building.
Address: 425 Lafayette StreetOpened in: 1954
Capacity: Newman Theater: 299, Anspacher Theater: 275, Martinson Theater: 199, LuEsther Theater: 160, Shiva Theater: 99
Past productions: Baldwin and Buckley at Cambridge
Current show: Joe McGinty & The Loser’s Lounge: A Night in XANADU – The Music of Olivia Newton-John & ELO
Coming soon: The Harder They Come, Dark Disabled Stories
30 – Music Box Theatre
What began as a betting proposition between two friends has developed into so much more over the last 100 years, but we all do love a good backstory with a happy ending.
Just before the 1920s hit, a producer and a songwriter made a deal. If Irving Berlin could conjure up an incredible musical revue (the shows we love best filled with dance, acting and music), then his theater producer buddy ( Sam H. Harris) would find a playhouse well up to standard for the production.
Both delivered on their promises, and well, the rest of history. The original production was titled ‘The Music Box Revue’, hence the theater’s name.
Address: 239 West 45th StreetOpened in: 1921
Past productions: Chicago, First Lady, Jerusalem, King Charles III, Shuffle Along, Dear Evan Hansen
Current show: there are only digital screenings at present
Coming soon: Bob Fosse’s DANCIN
31 – Nederlander Theatre
Named in honor of the family of the Nederlander Organization (who own a spew of Broadway Theaters), the Nederlander Theatre holds a special place in many hearts.
But this isn’t its first name, as it goes with many of the Broadway playhouses over 100 years old, and it was in 1980 that it received its current name. Prior to this, it first opened as the National Theatre, then the Billy Rose, and its second to last title, the Trafalgar.
The showhouse is favored repeatedly, and since its earliest days, some of the most iconic plays in history books have had their curtain call here.
Address: 208 West 41st StreetOpened in: 1921
Past productions: Julius Caesar, King Lear, Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf, Rent, Lena Horne: The Lady and Her Music, La Boheme, War Paint, Motown: The Musical
Current show: A Christmas Carol
Coming soon: Shucked
32 – Longacre Theatre
Here’s a little secret; sometimes the smaller theaters have the best views, and you’re often guaranteed an unobtrusive advantage — the Longacre Theater is one of these types of spaces.
Sporting French Neo-classical design on the building’s exteriors and then following the French Beaux Arts-style design on the inside, theater-goers that appreciate architecture will enjoy capturing this one.
Circa 2007 to 2008, the theater underwent a major renovation and was restored to its former beauty, so you really get the full display and feeling from the 109-year-old playhouse.
Interesting fact: It was named after the original Times Square; Longacre.
Address: 220 West 48th StreetOpened in: 1913
Past productions: Boeing-Boeing, Chinglish, Of Mice and Men, You Can’t Take It With You, Macbeth, Diana
Current show: Leopoldstadt
33 – Studio 54
Queens, whilst (the legendary) Studio 54 no longer serves as a nightclub where disco was the flavor of every month, it’s still kept its iconic name, except these days it’s used as a theater space — sorry 80s kids!
Celebrating culture in every way, from rock concerts to drag superstars to television shows … These walls have truly seen it all.
Was it always named Studio 54? Close on 100 years old, never! Suiting the times, it originally opened as the Gallo Opera House in the 20s, then the New Yorker Theater in the 30s before finally landing with its present.
Address: 254 West 54th StreetOpened in: 1927
Past productions: Cabaret, The Minutes, Caroline, or Change
Current show: no show scheduled
Coming soon: Pictures from Home
34 – Ethel Barrymore Theatre
A dreamy set up was conjured up for the Ethel Barrymore Theatre, named after the actress and Hollywood star, Ethel Barrymore.
Noteworthy; it wasn’t very often that a Broadway theater opened and named itself after a 40-something-year-old actress, but it was promised to Barrymore by two of the brothers of the Shubert family.
Its design took inspiration from the public Roman baths and other parts of Europe, with flashes of terra cotta. Moving inside, the auditorium boasts ornate interiors and elaborate features.
Address: 243 West 47th StreetOpened in: 1928
Past productions: The Kingdom of God, Joe Turner’s Come and Gone, Indiscretions, Amy’s View, Death of a Salesman, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, The Band’s Visit
Current show: The Piano Lesson
35 – Gerald Schoenfeld Theatre
Hugh Jackman, Daniel Craig, Jeremy Irons, Philip Seymour, Chris Rock and Helen Mirren are just a few of the biggest Hollywood superstars to grace the Gerald Schoenfeld Theatre’s stage!
If you’re one to go gaga over celebs, the excitement is real when watching a show here, realizing you’re breathing in the same air that the stars once did!
At the beginning, the playhouse opened as the Plymouth Theater (alongside the Broadhurst Theatre which both sport super similar building exteriors).
This was famous theater architect Herbert Krapp’s first independently appointed work outside of working with his regular client, the Shubert Organization.
Address: 236 West 45th StreetOpened in: 1917
Past productions: Jekyll & Hyde, Long Day’s Journey Into Night, Steady Rain, The Mother****** with the Hat, The Humans, Come From Away
Current show: Take Me Out
Coming soon: Life of Pi
36 – Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre
Originally part of a three-theater complex — all with similar architecture and design — spot the Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre with its modern Spanish style.
It’s nearby the famous Majestic Theatre, and the smaller John Golden Theatre and these three showhouses comprise the original theater complex.
All three were purchased by the Shubert family in the 1930s.
Once you’re inside, make sure to keep an eye out for the two murals (titled “Lovers of Spain,” by Hungarian illustrator, Willy Pogany) that decorate the Bernard’s archways on both sides.
Address: 242 West 45th StreetOpened in: 1927
Past productions: Grease, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, Onc, The Color Purple
Current show: Almost Famous
37 – Belasco Theatre
Do you believe in ghost stories? According to local myths, the Belasco Theatre was haunted at a time by the ghost of its original owner, David Belasco.
When the well-known producer, playwright and director first opened up this theater, he named it the Stuyvesant as Belasco already had a playhouse under his own name. Three years after its existence, the Broadway writer ditched the other theater and then, renamed this one after himself.
Some believe it was his pride and joy, and he even positioned himself in a Gothic-architecture-style apartment above the theater. Not to worry though, it’s said his ghost was set free during the production of ‘Oh Calcutta!’ at the playhouse some years after his passing.
The Belasco was considered part of the “Little Theatre” movement. These types of theaters specifically designed the house so that there was little distance between the audience and the actors on stage.
Address: 111 West 44th StreetOpened in: 1907
Past productions: A Grand Army Man, Julius Caesar, Awake and Sing!, End of the Rainbow, Hedwig and the Angry Inch
Current show: Ain’t No Mo’
Coming soon: Good Night, Oscar
38 – Palace Theatre
Are you familiar with the theater movement from France circa mid-1890s to the 1930s, known as “vaudeville”? Popular enough to filtrate into countries across the seas like America, the aim of the show was to entertain yet educate on the social norms through the arts, using acrobats to dancers.
Fit for royalty in the world of entertainment, vaudeville-style productions at the Palace Theatre caught the attention of thousands when they first opened, and the theater carried on showcasing vaudeville-style shows until the movement ended in the 30s.
Already a popular showhouse, the plays and shows unveiled here continued to win the crowds over. Back then, if an actor/actress performed on its stage, you could best believe their career looked golden.
Address: 1564 BroadwayOpened in: 1913
Past productions: Sweet Charity, Annie, Priscilla, Beauty and the Beast, Aida
Current show: no show scheduled
39 – American Airlines Theatre
With productions hosted here by the Roundabout Theatre Company (who bought and saved the theater in 1997), the theater is known for running quality plays.
After years of being used as a theater then a cinema then a visitor’s center, the theater was left in despair. When Roundabout stepped in, they teamed up with America Airlines and gave it the much-deserved and needed uplift and renovation, restoring it back to its Italian-Renaissance glory.
Expect easy access, fabulous acoustics and comfortable seating.
Address: 227 West 42nd StreetOpened in: 1918
Past productions: The 39 Steps, The Pirates of Penzance, A Soldier’s Play, All My Sons
Current show: 1776 – The Musical
40 – Vivian Beaumont Theater
A few things are striking about the Vivian Beaumont Theater … When it was inaugurated in the 60s and the curtain was pulled up for the first time, it was one of the only Broadway League theaters in construction — most had already been built in the early half of the 20th century.
The theater was immediately named after a woman from the moment it opened — again, at the time, unusual — and has remained ever since. (Vivian Beaumont Allen was an actress and philanthropist on the New York scene.)
No longer in the roaring 20s and glam 30s anymore, new architects were on the theater scene in the 60s. This playhouse was designed by Finnish-American architect, Eero Saarinen.
Address: 150 West 65th StreetOpened in: 1965
Past productions: Oslo, The King and I, Macbeth, My Fair Lady, Junk
Current show: Mike Birbiglia: The Old Man And The Pool
Coming soon: Camelot
41 – Hudson Theatre
Apart from marveling at the Broadway productions held at the Hudson Theatre, it’s one of the few showhouses that offers tours around its historic theater!
If you missed out on tickets to one of its plays or musicals, visit the theater for this incredible experience instead.
Constructed just three years after we hit 1900, the Hudson is one of the oldest existing theaters on Broadway (built in the same year as the New Amsterdam and Lyceum Theatres).
Spanning nearly two hours, get to wander around the open and empty auditorium and backstage, learn about its history, past performances and stars, personal stories and old-school photos.
Address: 145 West 44th StreetOpened in: 1903
Past productions: The Parisian Woman, David Byrne’s American Utopia, Burn This, Sea Wall / A Life, Neil Simon’s Plaza Suite
Current show: Death of a Salesman
Coming soon: A Doll’s House
42 – Booth Theatre
Located in what’s been dubbed as “ Shubert Alley”, Booth Theatre was originally part of a planned set of two theaters (with different names) to be designed in a similar style and built down the way from one another.
These were the Booth Theatre and the Shubert Theatre (both of which still remain). One of its stand-out features is its sgraffito facade — this is a technique where tinted plaster is layered to give it a softer look and feel.
At the time, this style deviated away from the usual heavy and overly romanticized designs. The theater has hosted the classics as well as some off-Broadway hits.
Address: 222 West 45th StreetOpened in: 1913
Past productions: Our Town, Next to Normal, I’ll Eat You Last, Hand to God, Meteor Show, American Son, Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, Freestyle Love Supreme
Current show: Kimberly Akimbo
43 – John Golden Theatre
Before the John Golden Theatre opened, its architect (Herbert Krapp) was tasked with creating an intimate space suitable for dramatic plays and intense storylines.
With under 1,000 seats in its auditorium, Krapp achieved an ever-ambient atmosphere.
Fascinatingly, this theater wasn’t constructed in Krapp’s usual Adam-style (which he had become recognizable for).
He was commissioned instead to design the interiors with more of a Spanish flair.
Why may you ask? Back then, Krapp and the Shubert Organization were synonymous, but this theater was first built by the Chanin Brothers. However, in 1946, the Shuberts took ownership of the theater in the end anyway.
Address: 252 West 45th StreetOpened in: 1927
Past productions: A Day in Hollywood/A Night in the Ukraine, Side Man, Avenue, Red, Skylight
Current show: Topdog/Underdog
Coming soon: Prima Facie
44 – Hayes Theatre
Small in size, but big in stature, the Hayes Theatre has always stood out — which in a way honors its original foundations, dreamt to go against the norm of the regular, over-the-top, grand theaters of the time.
Aptly given its first name; the Little Theatre, its original layout only included 299 seats, and the theater showcases a Neo-Georgian design approach.
It still remains the smallest theater on Broadway (officially)!
Theater titbit: This non-profit theater was bought by Second Stage Theatre in 2015, allowing the off-Broadway production company to take its much-deserved place on Broadway.
Address: 240 West 44th StreetOpened in: 1912
Past productions: Say Goodnight, Gracie; Gemini; Rock of Ages; Kite Runner
Current show: Between Riverside and Crazy
Coming soon: The Thanksgiving Play
45 – James Earl Jones Theatre
Formerly known as the Cort Theatre, the now-James Earl Jones Theatre is the very latest to undergo a name change (honoring the legend, actor and Broadway star, James Earl Jones), and it was just in 2022 that it happened.
Another theater that ticks many interesting boxes, it also takes the claim as the last-surviving Thomas-Lamb-designed theater.
Richly decorated, the interiors are reminiscent of the Petit Trianon chapel/château at the Palace of Versailles, and the lobby entrance was made using ‘Pavonazzo marble with panels of Marie Antoinette plasterwork.’
Address: 138 West 48th StreetOpened in: 1912
Past productions: The Father, Fences, Bright Star, King Lear, Secret
Current show: Ohio State Murders
Coming soon: Art
46 – Samuel J Friedman Theatre
The Manhattan Theatre Club (MTC) owns theaters both part of the official League and off-Broadway; the Samuel J Friedman Theatre is their Broadway star!
Part of six theaters that were built by the Chanin Brothers, popular architect Herbert J. Krapp also got his hands on this one.
Upon opening, it did see some success, but during a decline, it was leased out as a radio and television studio to CBS from 1952. It reopened as a playhouse again in 1969, then closed in the 80s.
MTC then bought the theater in the early 2000s with a complete overhaul made to the auditorium.
Address: 261 West 47th StreetOpened in: 1925
Past productions: Hair, Casa Valentina, An Enemy of the People, How I Learned to Drive, Cost of Living
Current show: The Collaboration
Coming soon: Summer, 1976
47 – Circle in the Square Theatre & School
Growing up, has it been a yearning goal of yours to be on Broadway? Have you always known you were destined to be a star?
If you’ve seriously considered giving acting a go as a career, sit upright for Circle In The Square Theatre & School.
Founded in 1952, then relocating to Broadway in 1972, the original theater enjoyed many successful musicals and plays but closed its stage in 1998.
Meanwhile, the Circle in the Square Theatre School was established in 1961 and moved to join the theater in 1971. When the theater closed, the school turned all its efforts and focus onto the (now prominent) acting school.
In recent years, the stage has reopened and the theater is back to hosting shows!
Address: 1633 BroadwayOpened in: 1972
Past productions: Uncle Vanya, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, American Buffalo
Current show: Kpop – The Musical
Coming soon: Black Orpheus
A night out at the theater is truly a magical experience — especially when it’s on Broadway, whose stages have been witness to some of the greatest performances of all times! You’ll create memories to last a lifetime.
Don’t hesitate to review our list of Broadway theaters in New York City at a later stage, with regular updates of the latest and hottest shows and productions (and the few noteworthy ones off) Broadway.
Enjoy the show!