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New York Broadway Theater District Walking Tour

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Key Highlights

  • Tour Radio City Music Hall
  • Uncover the history of legendary theaters
  • Learn about showmen George M. Cohan and Bert Williams
  • See where American playwright Eugene O’Neill was born
  • Enjoy the rock & roll feel of Hard Rock Café
  • Activity Schedule
    When does it run?

    Wednesdays

    Duration

    2 hours

    Start time

    Start time: 11:00am
    Duration: 2 hours

    Meeting Point

    Tour meets at the Times Square Visitor's Alliance center on 7th Avenue between 46th and 47th St.
    Please reach the meeting point 15 minutes earlier for pre departure briefing.

    Ending Point

    The tour ends at Rockefeller Center.

  • Overview & Itinerary

    Overview

    This walking tour of Broadway is fun-filled, engaging, fascinating and informative. Prepare yourself for a tour that is as uplifting as attending a hit Broadway show itself!

    Stroll along the Great White Way with your knowledgeable guide and hear enthralling stories about celebrated actors such as George M.Cohan and Bert Williams and their smash shows. Discover famous theaters like the Imperial, Palace, Belasco, Booth and Hudson. Explore the ways Rodgers & Hammerstein and Andrew Lloyd Webber shaped Broadway’s history with their phenomenally successful shows.

    In Times Square, you’ll see where famous American playwright Eugene O’Neill was born.

    Finally, you’ll discover the Art Deco splendor of Radio City Music Hall and learn of its long and varied career as host to various forms of entertainment.

    Itinerary

    The enthralling New York Broadway Theater District Walking Tour begins when you meet your guide at the Times Square Visitor's Alliance center on 7th Avenue between 46th and 47th Street. We’ll recount the legendary shows, stars and stages that have made this district the center of the theatrical universe with Times Square at its very core.

    You’ll visit several renowned theaters, each with wonderful stories to tell. For instance, the Belasco – opened in 1907 and supposedly haunted by the ghost of impresario David Belasco – is where Marlon Brando had his first widely noticed success in 1946.

    Then there’s The Booth, at 222 West 45th Street which opened in 1913. It was recently home to the critically acclaimed Tony Award and Pulitzer Prize winning musical “Next to Normal”.

    The Hudson, built in 1903, has seen a long and varied career, from theater to radio and TV studio to the Savoy rock club. Today it functions as a conference center and television studio.

    The Imperial, opened in 1923, was specifically built for musical theatre productions. Important musicals staged here include: Annie Get Your Gun (1946), Fiddler on the Roof (1964), Dreamgirls (1981) Les Misérables (1990), and Billy Elliot, which played from November 2008 until January 2012.

    The Palace Theater, at 1564 Broadway (at 47th Street), was the premier vaudeville house from 1913 through the 1920s, attaining legendary status. Star performers including Sarah Bernhardt, Al Jolson, Enrico Caruso, Bob Hope, Mae West, Fred Astaire, Bing Crosby, Rudolph Valentino and Jack Benny all played here.

    At Hard Rock Café, enjoy the memorabilia-laden, rock & roll themed ambience. Smack dab in the middle of Times Square, the HRC stands on the spot of the famed Paramount Theatre, a noted movie palace that opened in 1926 and had a huge Wurlitzer theater organ.

    At 6 Times Square, you find the site of John Jacob Astor's Knickerbocker Hotel, which opened in 1906. (Knickerbocker was a general term when referring to any New Yorker, wealthy or otherwise.) Built by Astor as a showcase of luxury in a time of prosperity, the hotel was destined to close its doors only 15 years later due to changes in fortune.

    See the Barrett Hotel in Times Square, where noted American playwright Eugene O'Neill was born. The site is now a Starbucks with a commemorative plaque on the wall.

    Discover where Bert Williams, a preeminent vaudeville entertainer, broke the color barrier in 1910. In 1902, Williams and his partner George Walker presented “In Dahomey”, the first black musical to open on Broadway. In 1910, Williams was invited to join Flo Ziegfeld's Follies – the only black performer in an otherwise all-white show.

    Learn how Broadway icons like George M. Cohan, (father of the American musical comedy); Father Francis Duffy, (a military chaplain and priest in the Times Square area); Rogers and Hammerstein, (Oklahoma!, Carousel, South Pacific, The King and I and The Sound of Music); and Andrew Lloyd Weber (Jesus Christ Superstar, Evita, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Cats and The Phantom of the Opera) shaped Broadway’s history and development.

    The final stop on the tour will be the justly famous Radio City Music Hall in the Rockefeller Center developed between 1929 and 1940 by John D. Rockefeller, Jr. The Radio City Christmas Spectacular continues to be an important annual event at this venue, as well as televised events including the Grammy Awards, the Tony Awards, the MTV Video Music Awards, and the NFL Draft.

    The tour ends at the Rockefeller Center and you can make your way back to your accommodation or onward to your next destination.

  • Inclusions & Exclusions

    Inclusions

    • English speaking guide

    Exclusions

    • Meals and beverages
  • Please note & Additional info

    Please note

    Please call the activity operator at least 24 hours prior to start of the tour for reconfirming departure details.

    Additional info

    The confirmation voucher includes the local activity operator’s contact details and local telephone numbers at the destination. They will happily answer any logistical questions you may have.