“Playing the Palace” has been the dream of many performers since the theatre opened in 1913. For many years the Palace Theatre was the preeminent vaudeville theatre in the country and an engagement in this theatre meant that a performer had “made it.” The who’s who of entertainment royalty have performed on this stage, including Ethel Barrymore, Harry Houdini, Will Rogers, Ethel Merman, Judy Garland, Jerry Lewis, Harry Belafonte, Bette Midler, Shirley MacLaine, and Diana Ross.
In 1965, The Nederlanders turned it into a legitimate theatre for the opening of Sweet Charity starring Gwen Verdon. Since then, it has housed star-studded hits including Lauren Bacall in Applause and Woman of the Year, Richard Kiley in Man of La Mancha, George Hearn in La Cage aux Folles, and Keith Carradine in The Will Rogers Follies. In 1994, the theatre was transformed to house Disney’s Beauty and the Beast, which was followed by their musical, Aida.
The Palace Theatre does not provide ticket refunds or exchanges.
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. Children under the age of 4 are not permitted in the theatre.
The seating procedure for latecomers varies by seat section. Generally speaking, late patrons are held at the back of the theatre and will be seated at the management’s discretion.
Smoking is prohibited in the Palace Theatre.
There is one bar located in the main lobby, one bar on the mezzanine level, and one bar on the balcony 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 bars begin serving patrons 30 minutes prior to the start of the performance and at intermission.
Nederlander Theatres do not permit outside food or beverages.
Restrooms are located in the Basement, Front Mezzanine and Balcony levels of the theatre.
Cloakroom service is available to patrons during the winter months. No bags or luggage will be checked.
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.
For the protection of our patrons, theatre managers and private security personnel 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: Brooke Smith
Treasurer: Cissy Caspare
Accessible seating is available for this performance as indicated on the seating map.
Wheelchair locations are available in the orchestra, rear mezzanine, and balcony (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 B101, B102, H101, H102, Q101, S101, S102, U127, U128, W127, W128; Mezzanine M102, O2, O123, O128; Balcony H19, H26.
Low vision/deaf and hard of hearing accessible seats are available in the Orchestra seats C119, C121, D121, D123, E123, and E125.
Please be advised that the only rows in the theatre that do not require walking up or down stairs are: Mezzanine row O and P, and Balcony row H. There is no elevator access in the mezzanine for rows AA-J.
The Palace Theatre is committed to the needs of patrons with disabilities. For more details on policies or assistance purchasing accessible seating, please contact 212-730-8200 or [email protected].
The Palace is equipped with wheelchair-accessible restrooms on the Orchestra level.
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.
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. Photo identification is required as a deposit.
For patrons with a tele coil, personal induction loop devices are also available at the theatre, free of charge. A photo identification is required as a deposit. Please set your device to the “t” setting.
The world’s most famous vaudeville house from 1913 until the 1930’s — when talking pictures killed vaudeville—the Palace was bought by the Nederlanders in 1965, beautifully renovated, and became a legit theatre in 1966 with the gala opening of Sweet Charity, the hit musical by Neil Simon, Cy Coleman, and Dorothy Fields, starring Gwen Verdon, directed and choreographed by Bob Fosse (Tony Award).
Notable productions were the long-running Beauty and the Beast; and the multi-Tony Award-winning musical The Will Rogers Follies by Betty Comden, Adolph Green, and Cy Coleman, starring Keith Carradine, directed and choreographed by Tommy Tune (awarded two Tonys for his work). Two other enormous hits of the 1980’s were the Jerry Herman/Harvey Fierstein musical La Cage aux Folles, starring George Hearn and Gene Barry, which won six Tony Awards and ran for 1,761 performances — this theatre’s longest-running show; and the hit musical Woman of the Year, which won Tony Awards for Lauren Bacall and Marilyn Cooper, Kander and Ebb (score) and Peter Stone (book).
During the 1970’s such superstars as Bette Midler, Josephine Baker, Shirley MacLaine, and Diana Ross made spectacular personal appearances. Legitimate attractions during this period included Christopher Plummer (Tony Award) in the musical Cyrano; Carol Channing in a revised version of Gentlemen Prefer Blondes called Lorelei; Richard Kiley in a return engagement of Man of La Mancha; Joel Grey in Jerry Herman’s The Grand Tour based on the play Jacobowsky and the Colonel; a rousing revival of Oklahoma!; John Carradine in a spectacular production of Frankenstein; and Lauren Bacall, Len Cariou, Penny Fuller, Bonnie Franklin, and Lee Roy Reams in the mega-hit Applause, which won Tonys for Bacall, Betty Comden, and Adolph Green (book), Charles Strouse and Lee Adams (score) and Ron Field (director and choreographer). The musical flourished here for 18 months.
During the 1960’s Judy Garland returned in triumph to this theatre in a vaudeville show called At Home at the Palace, and The New York Times called her “one of the most remarkable personalities of the contemporary entertainment field.” On the bill with her were tap dancer John Bubbles, comic Jackie Vernon, juggler Francis Brunn, and Ms. Garland’s young children, Lorna and Joey Luft. Later that year, Eddie Fisher and Buddy Hackett played the Palace.
In 1967, Don Ameche and Carol Bruce, aided by three talented young girls — Alice Playten, Neva Small and Robin Wilson — appeared in Henry, Sweet Henry, a musical based on the film The World of Henry Orient, and this production was followed by The Grand Music Hall of Israel.
In April 1968 Joel Grey played the great George M. Cohan in the musical George M! by Michael Stewart and John and Fran Pascal, with the timeless songs of Cohan and Bernadette Peters as Josie Cohan, his sister. It was ironic that Cohan was one of the few great entertainers who never played the Palace in its vaudeville heyday, but Joel Grey’s impersonation lasted for 433 performances here.
Space limitations prevent us from mentioning all the productions that have played this theatre.
Written by Louis Botto
Used with permission by Playbill, Inc. Playbill is registered trademark.