Location: New York, New York
Address: 247 W. 44th St.
Capacity: approx 1600
The Majestic Theatre was the last performance hall built by the Chanin Brothers in 1927, and in many ways it was their crowning achievement. When the venue opened, it could accommodate 1,800 attendees (it can currently seat around 1,600). The Majestic is part of a three-theatre complex that includes the John Golden (originally named Theatre Masque) and Royale playhouses and was the largest legitimate theatre on Broadway for decades. The outside of the theatre features a number of Moor-inspired architectural elements designed by noted Broadway theatre designer Herbert J. Krapp. In the main performance hall, the furnishings resemble what Krapp called a "modern Spanish" style, and it was one of the first playhouses in the area to have tiered stadium seating to give audiences clear sight lines. The theatre also features a single large balcony instead of two tiers of seating, as the rear balcony is often viewed as less desirable. After the stock market crash in 1929, the Chanins were forced to sell the theatre to the Shuberts, who have managed it ever since.
The Majestic's first performance took place on March 28, 1927 with a revue called Rufus LeMaire's Affairs. Unfortunately, the play was a complete dud and barely gained traction with audiences before it was canceled after 56 performances. The theatre would begin to book top-tier talent as word spread of its potential to host large-scale musicals. With its expansive size, impressive acoustics and large stage, the Majestic became the hot ticket for Broadway directors looking to stage elaborate productions.
The playhouse has booked a number of fabulous hits over the years and gave many performers their big break. One of the Majestic's biggest hits came in 1945 with the Rodgers and Hammerstein hit Carousel. The production starred John Raitt and Jan Clayton and ran for 890 performances, cementing the Majestic as the preferred venue for musical theatre in New York. The playhouse would also host the 1957 landmark production The Music Man, which would run for 1,375 performances. The show would go on to win Tony Awards for Best Musical, Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Musical Director and many other honors. The Majestic is best known for the longest-running show in Broadway history, The Phantom of the Opera, which opened in 1988 and continues to this day. With more than 9,900 performances in the books, it is one of the biggest acts on the Broadway scene.
The Majestic Theatre is still one of the largest venues in New York City, and remains one of the most hallowed buildings in the history of musical theatre.
Majestic Theatre Ticket Information:
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