Opened in 1910, the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre was originally named The Globe, after Shakespeare’s theatre in England. It had a retractable roof to enable the theatre to stay cool and open during the summer. For nearly two decades, the theatre housed a variety of plays and musicals, until 1932 when it was turned into a movie house.
In 1958, the theatre was gutted and rebuilt in its present configuration as a legitimate theatre. It was renamed in honor of America’s foremost husband-wife acting couple, Alfred Lunt and Lynn Fontanne, who starred in its first production, The Visit. Theatregoers can enjoy a selection of photographs from their private collection on display throughout the lobby areas.
Refunds/Exchanges The Lunt-Fontanne Theatre does not provide ticket refunds or exchanges.
Dress Code There is no dress code at the theatre. For all performances, attire should be comfortable and appropriate for the occasion. The theatre is air-conditioned during the summer months.
All persons entering the theatre, regardless of age, must have a ticket.
The seating procedure for latecomers varies by seat section. Generally speaking, late patrons will be held at the back of the theatre, where they can watch the show through the first song. They are then escorted directly to their seats by an usher.
Smoking is prohibited in the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre.
Concessions There is one bar located on in theatre’s lower lounge, one bar located on the main level, and one bar located on the mezzanine level where alcoholic and nonalcoholic beverages as well as snacks can be purchased. Bottled water and beverages with secure tops are permitted in the auditorium. The mezzanine bar begins serving patrons 50 minutes prior to the performance, and the bars located on the main level and lower lounge begin serving patrons 30 minutes prior to the start of the performance. All bars are open at intermission.
Nederlander Theatres do not permit outside food or beverages.
Male and female restrooms are located on the lower and mezzanine levels of the theatre.
Cloakroom service is available to patrons during the winter months. No bags or luggage will be checked.
Open during showtime hours.
We are partnered with ParkWhiz to help our customers book parking in advance. ParkWhiz features hundreds of parking locations all over NYC at discounted rates. Book parking here before you head in for the show.
Patron Security For the protection of our patrons and theatre, managers are on duty during all performances.
All bags will be inspected upon arrival. Luggage, shopping bags, and other large packages that will not fit comfortably with you at your seat will not be checked or allowed inside the theatre. For your convenience, please make other arrangements for these items before arriving.
Do not leave your personal bags (purses, backpacks) unattended while in the theatre.
House Manager: Tracey Malinowski
Treasurer: Joe Olcese
Accessible seating is available for this performance as indicated on the seating map.
Wheelchair locations are available in the orchestra section of the theatre (pending availability). You may purchase one wheelchair and three companion seats per order if available.
For guests with limited mobility, there are seats available with folding armrests (“Aisle transfer seats”) in these locations: Orchestra (no stairs): D101, D114, F1, F2, G101, G114, R1, R2, R101, R114, T1, Z101. Mezzanine (stairs required): E 19, E20, E 114.
For low vision/deaf and hard of hearing guests, accessible seats are available in the Orchestra C 1-3, C 2-4.
The Lunt-Fontanne Theatre is committed to the needs of our patrons with disabilities. For more details on our policies or assistance purchasing accessible seating, please contact us at 212-575-9200 or [email protected].
The Lunt-Fontanne Theatre is equipped with a accessible restroom on the theatre’s first floor. They can be designated for guests with disabilities.
There are designated wheelchair and companion seats in the rear of the orchestra section. If the patron can transfer from their wheelchair to a seat, we have orchestra locations as close as the first 10 rows where arm rest lifts for easy transfer. No steps involved. (See seating chart.)
Services for Patrons With Disabilities
Theatre representatives are available to meet patrons with disabilities in the lobby of the building to escort them to designated wheelchair accessible areas. There are no elevators or escalators at the Lunt-Fontanne.
Policy on Guide Dogs and Service Animals
Although animals are not permitted in the theatre, an exception is made for guide dogs and service animals. Please inform your ticket sales representative if any accommodations are required.
Assisted Listening Devices
Headsets for sound augmentation are available at the theatre, free of charge. A photo identification is required as a deposit. For patrons with a tele coil, this theatre is equipped with an induction loop. Please set your device to the “t” setting.
At this time multilingual commentary is not available.
Built in 1910 as the Globe and renamed the Lunt-Fontanne in 1958 in honor of the famed acting couple, this handsome theatre is now owned by the Nederlander Organization.
The house’s productions include Titanic; A Midsummer Night’s Dream; The Three Sisters; Hello, Dolly!; Comedy Tonight; Best Little Whorehouse Goes Public; Ain’t Broadway Grand; Catskills on Broadway; Sting in 3 Penny Opera; Gospel at Colonus; Uptown…It’s Hot!; Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor in Private Lives; Sophisticated Ladies; Sandy Duncan in Peter Pan; The Rothschilds with Tony Awards for Hal Linden and Keene Curtis; and a series of revivals of hit musicals: A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum starring Phil Silvers (1972); The Pajama Game (1973); My Fair Lady (from the St. James Theatre); and Carol Channing back again in Hello, Dolly! (1978). During these years there was also the musical Rex, starring Nicol Williamson.
In the 1960s Sid Caesar shined in the musical Little Me, with Bob Fosse’s choreography winning a Tony Award; Martha Graham and her Dance Company performed; Richard Burton played Hamlet and Hume Cronyn won a Tony as Polonius; Norman Wisdom amused in Walking Happy; Julie Harris went musical in Skyscraper; Marlene Dietrich made a dazzling Broadway debut in a concert of songs and anecdotes, backed by Burt Bacharach and his Orchestra; a Wall Street musical called How Now, Dow Jones won a Tony Award for actor Hiram Sherman; and Nicol Williamson played an interesting, acerbic Hamlet.
From mid-1932 until 1957 this theatre was a movie house with its entrance on Broadway. At this time Roger Stevens and Robert W. Dowling restored the house to legitimacy by completely redoing it in an elegant eighteenth — century style. The entrance was now returned to its original 46th Street location, and the theatre was renamed the Lunt-Fontanne. The gala reopening of the theatre starred the Lunts in one of their best plays — The Visit. It was their last appearance on Broadway. Other 1950’s highlights included John Gielgud and Margaret Leighton in Much Ado About Nothing; Mary Martin in Rodgers and Hammerstein’s last musical, The Sound of Music, which won six Tonys.
The last musical to play this theatre before it became a movie house in 1932 was Jerome Kern and Otto Harbach’s delightful The Cat and the Fiddle, which ran for 329 performances. Before that, Beatrice Lillie had cavorted in Vincent Youmans’s Oh, Please, containing the hit song “I Know That You Know.”
In the early years of this house, the comedy team of Dave Montgomery and Fred Stone starred in many hit musicals here. These included The Old Town and Chin-Chin. Stone appeared without his partner in such hits as Jack o’Lantern and Tip-Top. When Stone became ill, Will Rogers subbed for him in Three Cheers. With his dancing daughter Dorothy, Stone scored a big hit in Stepping Stones. The Ziegfeld Follies of 1921 starred W.C. Fields and Fanny Brice, who sang “My Man” and “Second Hand Rose”; and two editions of George White’s Scandals with Gershwin scores opened here. For a change of pace in 1916, two great actresses — Laurette Taylor and Lynn Fontanne — appeared here in The Harp of Life.
Written by Louis Botto
Used with permission by Playbill, Inc. Playbill is registered trademark.