The Last Night of Ballyhoo
The Last Night of Ballyhoo is a play by Alfred Uhry that premiered in 1996 in Atlanta. The play is a comedy/drama, set in Atlanta, Georgia, in December 1939; the play is set in the upper class German-Jewish community living in Atlanta, Georgia in December 1939. Hitler has conquered Poland, Gone with the Wind is about to premiere, Adolph Freitag, his sister Boo, sister-in-law Reba, along with nieces Lala and Sunny – a Jewish family so assimilated they have a Christmas tree in the front parlor – are looking forward to Ballyhoo, a lavish cotillion ball sponsored by their restrictive country club. Adolph's employee Joe Farkas is an attractive eligible bachelor and an Eastern Europe Jew, familiar with prejudice but unable to fathom its existence within his own religious community, his presence prompts college student Sunny to examine intra-ethnic bias, her Jewish identity, the beliefs with which she has been raised. Boo Levy – Lala's mother, Sunny's aunt, Adolph's sister, her husband is dead, she struggles with wanting her daughter to be successful.
Boo is the main character driving the play's inter-Jewish racism. Described in cast of characters as'Adolf's sister, a few years older.'Sunny Freitag – A junior at a well-to-do liberal arts college, Sunny is interested in the works of Eugene V. Debs and Upton Sinclair, she faces this through her relationship with Joe. It is unknown whether the end scene is a reality. Described in cast of characters as'Reba's daughter, 20s.'Adolph Freitag – Adores Sunny, but has little tolerance for Lala. Adolph is a kind soul. Described in cast of characters as'a businessman, late 40s.'Lala Levy – Obsessed with'Gone With The Wind.' Somewhat childish and awkward, Lala finds a husband in Peachy. Lala fights with her mother over her social status. Described in cast of characters as'Boo's daughter, 20s.'Reba Freitag – Sister-in-law to Adolph and Boo. Reba is more shrewd than others give her credit. Like the other characters, Reba is oblivious to. Described in cast of characters as'Adolf's sister-in-law, middle 40s.'Joe Farkas – Works for Adolph Freitag, finds an intellectual match in Sunny.
Challenges the family to reassess their ideas of identity and family. Described in cast of characters as'Adolf's business assistant, 20s.'Peachy Weil – Finds a match in Lala. Known for his obnoxious behavior and outspokenness. Described in cast of characters as'a visitor from Lake Charles, 20s.' A series of vignettes, each featuring a different member family of the city's exclusive Standard Club, Ballyhoo was inspired by the playwright's childhood memories. In revising the play, Uhry opted to focus on the Freitags and expanded their storyline into two acts. Ballyhoo was commissioned by the Olympic Arts Festival for the 1996 Summer Olympics and was staged at Atlanta's Alliance Theatre that year; the Atlanta cast included Terry Beaver as Adolph, Dana Ivey as Boo, Stephen Mailer as Joe, Jessalyn Gilsig as Sunny, Mary Bacon as Lala, Valerie J. Curtin as Aunt Reba, Stephen Largay as Peachy Weil; the play opened on Broadway at the Helen Hayes Theatre on February 27, 1997 and closed on June 28, 1998 after 556 performances.
Directed by Ron Lagomarsino, the original cast included Terry Beaver as Adolph, Dana Ivey as Boo, Paul Rudd as Joe, Arija Bareikis as Sunny, Jessica Hecht as Lala, Celia Weston as Aunt Reba, Stephen Largay as Peachy Weil. Replacements in the run included Peter Michael Goetz as Adolph, Kelly Bishop and Carole Shelley as Boo, Mark Feuerstein and Christopher Gartin as Joe, Kimberly Williams as Sunny, Cynthia Nixon and Ilana Levine as Lala. Ben Brantley of the New York Times observed, "Much of the barbed, idiosyncratic Southern humor recalls a vintage episode of the television sitcom Designing Women... Mr. Uhry's one previous play, Driving Miss Daisy... was a modest masterpiece of obliquely rendered sentimentality and social commentary. Here the author employs much more direct and conventional means that work more blatantly to elicit laughs and tears. Ballyhoo isn't a clumsy work, and Mr. Uhry has a fascinating and incendiary subject in the self-hatred implicit in the social stratifications among Southern Jews given that the play is set on the eve of World War II.
But the context in which he couches it can feel treacly... There's no doubting that Ballyhoo is a sincere, good-hearted work, but it never feels spontaneous. Despite its provocative subject, its form is the theatrical equivalent of comfort food, something for those who like their nostalgia repackaged in the guise of something new." 1997 Tony Award for Best Play 1997 Tony Award, Best Featured Actor in a Play, Terry Beaver 1997 Tony Award, Best Featured Actress in a Play, Dana Ivey 1997Tony Award, Best Featured Actress in a Play, Celia Weston Outer Critics Circle Award for Best Broadway Play 1997 Drama Desk Award for Outstanding New Play 1997 Drama Desk Award, Outstanding Featured Actress in a Play, Dana Ivey 1997 Drama Desk Award, Outstanding Featured Actress in a Play, Celia Weston 1997 Pulitzer Prize for Drama – finalist The Last Night of Ballyhoo at the Internet Broadway Database The Last Night of Ballyhoo at the Internet Broadway Database
Atlantic Station is a neighborhood on the northwestern edge of Midtown Atlanta, United States comprising a retail district, office space, condominiums and apartment buildings. First planned in the mid-1990s and opened in 2005, the neighborhood's 138 acres are located on the former brownfield site of the Atlantic Steel mill. Atlantic Station is located on the site of the Atlantic Steel mill, which opened in 1901; the steel mill was nearly closed in the mid-1970s, but it remained nominally operational to avoid the huge costs it would have required to remediate the soil contamination present after years of operation. Developer Jim Jacoby, who redeveloped Florida's Marineland, began putting the project together in 1997 when his company became the property contractor of the land; the redevelopment of the land into what is now Atlantic Station was financed by private investment, but was supplemented by a special tax district to pay for city tax bonds for public utilities. The development was planned to include 15,000,000 square feet of retail, residential space as well as 11 acres of public parks.
Its size encouraged the Postal Service to award the neighborhood its own ZIP code: 30363. Atlantic Station was designed with energy efficiency in mind and many of the buildings are LEED certified. Additionally, the project was developed to help mitigate urban sprawl and reduce air pollution by allowing many more people to live and work within walking distance of most everyday things they need, with many alternative transportation options nearby; the proposed BeltLine transit/greenway project is expected to pass within a few miles of the development. In October 2003, the first residents moved into the development; the 17th Street bridge was completed in January 2004 and the first round of retail establishments opened in October 2005. Atlantic Station received the EPA's 2004 Phoenix Award as the Best National Brownfield Redevelopment, as well as the Sierra Club's 2005 America's Best New Development Projects listing. In July 2005, a pre-dawn fire destroyed a large wood-frame residential building under construction.
Two days it was ruled arson after a major investigation. In addition to the destruction of the 65-unit Element building, only framed-in at the time, another 80 inhabited units at the Art Foundry across Mecaslin Street had damage to the facade, including scorching, broken windows, melted miniblinds. At least five million dollars of damage was done to the buildings, 18 cars parked on the street were destroyed and another 7 were damaged from the intense heat. In a joint venture, North American Properties Atlanta, founded by Mark Toro, CB Richard Ellis Investors closed on the purchase of Atlantic Station's retail component on December 31, 2010. Toro and the NAP management launched a social media blitz, attended community meetings and real estate symposiums to discuss challenges, such as crime, invite feedback. Toro's vision to transform Atlantic Station included new retail, new restaurants, better parking and a renewed effort to make Atlantic Station a destination for in-town residents. On October 1, 2015, Atlantic Station's retail core was sold to Hines Interest Limited Partnership with an unnamed joint financial partner.
Atlantic Station comprises three distinct areas that are lined along 17th Street between the Downtown Connector and Northside Drive, the District, the Commons, the Village. The District is. Opened on October 21, 2005, it was constructed in the style of an outdoor mall, with choices of shopping, a 16-screen Regal movie theater. Above the retail levels is an additional two to three stories of condominiums. With the 7,200-space parking garage underneath, the shopping area is pedestrian-friendly and many of the surface level streets are closed off for special events; the southwest corner of The District is home to the 26-story, 336-foot TWELVE Hotel and Residences Atlantic Station, completed in December 2005. In addition, townhomes constructed in 2004 line 16th Street one block south of The District; the District's office space is located along the six-lane 17th Street Corridor, is home to the 22-story tall 171 17th Street, known as the Wells Fargo Building and completed in 2004, the 17-story 201 17th Street, completed in 2007.
Developed by AIG Global Real Estate, 171 17th Street was awarded the silver certificate in the U. S. Green Building Council's Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design Core and Shell Development program. 171 17th Street became the first-ever LEED Silver-Core and Shell certified high-rise office building, the first high-rise office building in Georgia to receive any LEED certification. The 25-story BB&T Tower at 271 17th Street was completed in 2009, becoming Atlantic Station's tallest office tower. 271 was built by Brasfield & Gorrie. The Commons is home to many low-rise condominiums, townhomes, a large man-made stormwater retention pond, located within the median of 17th Street; the Village is located on the westernmost portion of Atlantic Station, along 16th Street, comprises an IKEA store that opened in 2005, as well as two apartment complexes. Current tenants include Athleta, The Athlete's Foot, Atlanta Falcons Official Team Store, Atlanta United Official Team Store, AT&T, Banana Republic, Bath & Body Works, Dermalogica, Dillard's, DSW, Earth and Sky Creations, The Eye Gallery, Fab'rik, Francesca's, Gap, H&M, Ikea, It'Sugar, Jos A. Bank, Journey's, Kate's, Kinnucan's, LA Fitness, Lush Nail Bar, Old Navy, Regal Cine
Woodruff Arts Center
Woodruff Arts Center is a visual and performing arts center located in Atlanta, Georgia. The center houses three not-for-profit arts divisions on one campus. Opened in 1968, the Woodruff Arts Center is home to the Alliance Theatre, the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, the High Museum of Art. In 1962, Atlanta suffered an unprecedented loss when an airplane, the Chateau de Sully, carrying the leaders of Atlanta’s arts and civic community, crashed at Orly Airport in Paris; as the city grieved, it came together and used the devastating loss as a catalyst for the arts and built a fitting memorial to these victims. This led to the creation of the Atlanta Arts Alliance; the Memorial Arts Center, as the Woodruff was known, opened October 5, 1968. The building was designed by Joe Amisano, it was renamed the Woodruff Arts Center in 1982 to honor its greatest benefactor, Robert W. Woodruff; the art center included the Atlanta College of Art, the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and the High Museum of Art. All three entities were combined into one corporation.
The Alliance Theatre was added in 1970 as the fourth division of the Woodruff and thirty-five years in 2005, a fifth division was added when Young Audiences joined the center. This addition ensures that the Woodruff’s PreK-12 programs now reach more than one million children annually, the largest base of any arts center in the country; the Woodruff campus expanded in 1983 with the addition of the Richard Meier-designed High Museum of Art building. This building made Meier the youngest Pritzker Prize-winning architect at that time. On November 12–13, 2005, the Woodruff introduced its largest expansion since opening in 1968; the new addition features two new exhibit buildings and a new administrative and curatorial building for the High Museum of Art. This new "village for the arts" was designed by another Pritzker Prize winner, Italian architect, Renzo Piano; the Woodruff campus sits on 12.25 acres with a planned expansion to 18.25 acres. The campus includes 906,000 square feet of exhibition and performance space, plus a 200,000-square-foot garage located beneath the village.
The Woodruff Arts Center houses Howard Pousner. "Atlanta Symphony Orchestra wins Grammy for best engineered album". Artsculture.blog.ajc.com. Retrieved October 12, 2016; the Tony Award-winning Alliance Theatre, the High Museum of Art. List of concert halls Woodruff Arts Center website
Sister Act (musical)
Sister Act is a musical based on the hit 1992 film of the same name with music by Alan Menken, lyrics by Glenn Slater, book by Bill and Cheri Steinkellner, additional book material by Douglas Carter Beane. After having a regional premiere in 2006 in Pasadena, the original West End production opened on June 2, 2009 at the London Palladium, starring Patina Miller and produced by Stage Entertainment and Whoopi Goldberg. Subsequent productions have been seen in many countries around the world. Act 1In Philadelphia, Mother Superior declares that the convent is in need before Deloris Van Cartier, crowned'Lady Fabulous' of 1978, is seen performing in the night club run by her gangster boyfriend Curtis Shank. Deloris is overjoyed as she believes her boyfriend is going to introduce her to a record producer on that day, although she soon learns that this is not to be. Hurt and frustrated, Deloris goes to her backup singers KT and LaRosa, about her dreams of stardom and fame, she decides to head out of Philadelphia to go fulfill her dreams on her own.
However she gets to Shank just in time to see him and his crew made up of nephew TJ, Dinero, shoot someone who they believe has "squealed" about them to the cops. Horrified, Deloris Shank orders his men to get her and bring her back. Deloris runs to a police station and tells the desk chief, about what happened; the two recognize each other as old friends from school with Deloris calling him "Sweaty Eddie". Eddie decides that Deloris needs to go into the witness protection program and sends her to the place he believes Shank will never find her - a convent called The Holy Order of the Little Sisters of Our Mother of Perpetual Faith. Deloris is disappointed by this idea as she learns from the Mother Superior that contact with the outside world is limited, that she cannot smoke, drink, or wear any of her less than appropriate clothing. Deloris joins the other nuns for dinner and after several comedic interactions with the overly perky Sister Mary Patrick, Deloris discovers how the other nuns got their "calling" from the Lord.
They ask Deloris to share her story with them and she lies. Meanwhile, back in his nightclub, Shank is frustrated, he tells his goons how he will not stop until he kills Deloris. Back at the convent Deloris decides to hit the town, she goes across the street to a slinky bar, is followed by Sister Mary Lazarus, Sister Mary Patrick, Sister Mary Robert. When the three nuns arrive they are shocked to find Sister Mary Clarence drinking and dancing, however they assume that she is attempting to save the lost souls in the bar. Deloris gets the whole bar dancing. However, the joyful mood is destroyed when Deloris recognises Shank's boys entering the bar, she tries to hide herself. There is a fight in the bar which has to be broken up by Eddie and the Mother Superior, who orders the nuns to go back to the convent, she confronts Deloris telling her that she must conform to the life of the nuns. Eddie agrees, telling Deloris that Shank has upped the price on her head, so she needs to be careful. Deloris storms back to the convent after being informed that she has to wake up at 5 a.m. and join the choir.
Eddie, now alone with only the drunks and homeless on the street, sings of his desire to be cool, to let go, impress Deloris. The following morning Deloris attends the choir practice and loudly admits that the choir sounds terrible; this prompts the Mother Superior to let Deloris lead the choir. Deloris teaches the nuns how to sing in key and on time, she manages to break the quiet and timid Sister Mary Robert out of her shell. That Sunday, the choir perform an up-tempo hymn which to the struggling church's surprise brings in more people and more donations; the Mother Superior, however, is horrified how the simple traditional choir she knew has changed and become modern. The news of the choir soon spreads with photographers and news reporters coming in to get the story behind the latest sensation - this wonderful nontraditional choir. Act 2Over the coming weeks, the choir has become successful and the money from donations has paid for the church to be remodelled and fixed. However, the newfound fame comes at a price.
Shank and his goons spot Deloris with the choir in the newspaper. Shank orders his boys to get into the convent and bring Deloris to him. TJ, Dinero discuss how they will do this. Meanwhile, back at the church, Monsignor Howard has some terrific news: the choir has been asked to perform a special concert in front of the Pope; the choir are overjoyed but nervous and that night they ask Deloris to pray for their success. Deloris is looking forward to the occasion, although the Mother Superior calls her over and tells her that Shank's men have just come looking for her and she must leave quickly; the other nuns overhear and Deloris is forced to tell them the truth about who she is and that she cannot perform with them. Deloris runs off to get her things followed by Sister Mary Robert while the other nuns disappointedly go back to their rooms. Alone in Deloris' room, the Mother Superior expresses joy; however it is evident that she, along with the other nuns, have developed a love for Sist
Theatre for Early Years
Theatre for Early Years or TEY is a blanket term for theatrical events designed for audiences of pre-school children. TEY is considered to be a sub-category of Theatre for Young Audiences. TEY is known in the USA as Theatre for the Very Young, or TVY, it has been defined as “professional theatre led by adults performing for an audience of babies from months old to toddlers one and a half to two years old accompanied by a parent or adult companion. Babies sit on their caregiver's lap or in a stroller, watch a play - between 30 to 45 minutes long - designed for them”. In addition, performances for newborns, centring on bonding and attachment, more participatory productions which invite children to enter the performance area for a time have become common. Productions aimed at foetuses and expectant mothers have been created. TEY arguably emerged in 1978 with the work of Theatre Kit and Oily Cart. Chris Speyer, founder of radical children’s theatre company Theatre Kit, described the epiphany which led to the earliest experiments in TEY: The move into under fives theatre was prompted by an occasion when we took Katherine's niece Annie aged three, to see a performance of one of our shows for children.
Finding that various aspects of the show frightened Annie, Katherine decided that we should develop a form of theatre tailored to the needs and concentration spans of under fives. Several members of Theatre Kit went on to make Oily Cart's Exploding Punch & Judy in 1981, Oily Cart have gone on to produce at least one show a year for under-fives, although it was not until 2002 that they began making work for the youngest audiences, with Jumpin' Beans. In 1987, the first performance for newborns, Joëlle Rouland’s L'oiseau serein, was presented in France, at the same time as Italy’s La Baracca – Testoni Ragazzi began their career with Acqua. La Baracca's founders and Valeria Frabetti, were invited by staff at a Bologna nido to develop a workshop, a performance, for their children aged from 3 months to 5 years; this project, which became Acqua, has a claim to be the first non-English production staged for this age group. Over the following 25 years, La Baracca has been at the forefront of research and creation of theatre experiences for younger audiences, with thirty different plays now produced for the under-fives.
Notable theatre companies now producing TEY performances include Windmill Theatre and Polyglot Theatre, Toihaus Theater, Théâtre de la Guimbarde, Teater My, Polka Theatre, Peut-Être Theatre and Theatre-Rites, Athénor and Compagnie ACTA, HELIOS Theater and Theater o. N. Replay Theatre, Teater Fot, Teatr Atofri, Companhia de Música Teatral, Ion Creangă, Starcatchers and Catherine Wheels Theatre Company, Magnet Theatre, La Casa Incierta, Ögonblicksteatern and Unga Klara, Imagination Stage, Stages Theatre Company and Children's Theatre Company of Minneapolis and Alliance Theatre for the Very Young and Theatr Iolo. There are several organisations and campaigning groups whose influence has been key to the growth of TEY ASSITEJ, the EU Programme of Culture 2000 Glitterbird Project and the Small Size network. All mainstream performance art forms have been adapted for Early Years audiences, including theatre, opera, musical theatre, classical music, art installations and puppetry. In theatrical productions, forms vary widely.
Fairy tales, picture books and traditional children’s literature have all provided inspiration for narrative productions, as have commercial TV and film franchises, such as Sesame Street and Disney on Ice. Other productions use more abstract, postdramatic forms. Francoise Gerbaulet, French theatre maker, has noted "I am always surprised by the seriousness of infant spectators. Babies do not understand, they absorb, the sound of voices, the music of words, fear, violence, they absorb them all... Babies are ideal spectators". Despite occasional productions derived wholly from the suggestions of young children, TEY tends to be created by adults and never features professional baby performers, although in the UK this is technically allowable under the UK Government’s The Children Regulations 1968; the presence of chaperones is universal, due to the obvious ethical impossibility of separating a young child from all caregivers. Productions tend to be intimate with small audiences. There is no fourth wall in TEY, as actors are communicating with spectators throughout.
Multisensory experiences use sound, touch and taste to engage with their audiences. The needs of the young, including feeding and going to the toilet, are considered by TEY practitioners. TEY can be defined by its purposeful design, with experiences crafted for babies and their adult companions. Theatre
Alfred Fox Uhry is an American playwright and screenwriter. He has received an Academy Award, two Tony Awards and the 1988 Pulitzer Prize for dramatic writing for Driving Miss Daisy, he is a member of the Fellowship of Southern Writers. Uhry was born in Atlanta, the son of Alene, a social worker, Ralph K. Uhry, a furniture designer and artist, he was born into a Jewish family with the author Ann Uhry Abrams. Uhry graduated from Druid Hills High School in 1954 and subsequently graduated from Brown University where he wrote two original musicals with Brownbrokers. Druid Hills High School's Uhry Theater is named in honor of Uhry. During his first years in New York City, learning the craft of lyric-writing, Uhry received a stipend from Frank Loesser. Uhry's early work for the stage was as a lyricist and librettist for a number of commercially unsuccessful musicals, including a revival of Little Johnny Jones starring Donny Osmond which ran for one performance on Broadway, his first collaboration with Robert Waldman was the 1968 musical Here's Where I Belong, which closed after one performance on Broadway.
They had better success with The Robber Bridegroom, which premiered on Broadway in both 1975 and 1976, had a year-long national tour, garnered Uhry his first Tony Award nomination, for best book of a musical in 1976. America's Sweetheart, with music by Robert Waldman and with the book co-written by Uhry with John Weidman, ran at the Hartford Stage, Connecticut in March 1985 to April 1985, at the Coconut Grove Playhouse, Florida, where it closed; the Robber Bridegroom was revived Off-Broadway in March 2016 at the Roundabout Theatre Company and directed by Alex Timbers. This production won three Lucille Lortel Awards including Outstanding Revival. Driving Miss Daisy is the first in what is known as his "Atlanta Trilogy" of plays, all set during the first half of the 20th century. Produced Off-Broadway at Playwrights Horizons, the play earned him the 1988 Pulitzer Prize for Drama, it deals with the relationship between her black chauffeur. He adapted it into the screenplay for a 1989 film starring Jessica Tandy and Morgan Freeman, an adaptation, awarded the Academy Award for Writing Adapted Screenplay, in addition to the Academy Award for Tandy as best actress.
The second of the trilogy, The Last Night of Ballyhoo, is set in 1939 during the premiere of the film Gone with the Wind. It deals with a Jewish family during an important social event, it was commissioned for the Cultural Olympiad in Atlanta which coincided with the 1996 Summer Olympics, received the Tony Award for Best Play when produced on Broadway in 1997. The third is the 1998 musical Parade, about the 1913 trial of Jewish factory manager Leo Frank; the libretto earned him a Tony Award for Best Book of a Musical. The music was written by Jason Robert Brown. Uhry's play Edgardo Mine is based on the true story of Edgardo Mortara, an Italian child taken by police from his Jewish family in 1858 because one of their domestic servants had baptized him; the play, directed by Doug Hughes, opened at Hartford Stage, Connecticut in November 2002. The Manhattan Theatre Club produced Uhry's musical LoveMusik on Broadway in 2007; the story depicts the relationship between composer Kurt Weill and his wife, Lotte Lenya, using Weill's music.
Apples & Oranges premiered on October 2012 at the Alliance Theatre in Atlanta. This new play is about the rediscovery of a sibling relationship. Angel Reapers, a collaboration with director/choreographer Martha Clarke, ran Off-Broadway at the Signature Theatre from February 2 to March 20, 2016; this production won the Lucille Lortel Award for "Outstanding Alternative Theatrical Experience". Uhry wrote the screenplay for the 1989 film version of Driving Miss Daisy and for the 1992 film Rich in Love, his next screenplay is for a film announced in 2009, From Swastika to Jim Crow, a dramatization of a documentary about Jewish professors who flee Nazi Germany, find posts in the Southern US, identify with their African-American students and their struggle under Jim Crow. Uhry is married to Joanna Kellogg, they live in New York City. Alfred Uhry at the Internet Broadway Database Alfred Uhry on IMDb Alfred Uhry at the Internet Off-Broadway Database Alfred Uhry on Charlie Rose Works by or about Alfred Uhry in libraries "Alfred Uhry collected news and commentary".
The New York Times. Profile at the Fellowship of Southern Writers Interviewed by Paul Rudd for BOMB Magazine 2016 Lucille Lortel Awards Winners
Broadway theatre known as Broadway, refers to the theatrical performances presented in the 41 professional theatres, each with 500 or more seats located in the Theater District and Lincoln Center along Broadway, in Midtown Manhattan, New York City. Along with London's West End theatre, Broadway theatre is considered to represent the highest level of commercial theatre in the English-speaking world; the Theater District is a popular tourist attraction in New York City. According to The Broadway League, for the 2017–2018 season total attendance was 13,792,614 and Broadway shows had US$1,697,458,795 in grosses, with attendance up 3.9%, grosses up 17.1%, playing weeks up 2.8%. The majority of Broadway shows are musicals. Historian Martin Shefter argues that "'Broadway musicals', culminating in the productions of Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein, became enormously influential forms of American popular culture" and contributed to making New York City the cultural capital of the Western Hemisphere.
New York did not have a significant theatre presence until about 1750, when actor-managers Walter Murray and Thomas Kean established a resident theatre company at the Theatre on Nassau Street, which held about 280 people. They presented Shakespeare ballad operas such as The Beggar's Opera. In 1752, William Hallam sent a company of twelve actors from Britain to the colonies with his brother Lewis as their manager, they established a theatre in Williamsburg and opened with The Merchant of Venice and The Anatomist. The company moved to New York in the summer of 1753, performing ballad operas and ballad-farces like Damon and Phillida; the Revolutionary War suspended theatre in New York, but thereafter theatre resumed in 1798, the year the 2,000-seat Park Theatre was built on Chatham Street. The Bowery Theatre opened followed by others. By the 1840s, P. T. Barnum was operating an entertainment complex in Lower Manhattan. In 1829, at Broadway and Prince Street, Niblo's Garden opened and soon became one of New York's premiere nightspots.
The 3,000-seat theatre presented all sorts of non-musical entertainments. In 1844, Palmo's Opera House opened and presented opera for only four seasons before bankruptcy led to its rebranding as a venue for plays under the name Burton's Theatre; the Astor Opera House opened in 1847. A riot broke out in 1849 when the lower-class patrons of the Bowery objected to what they perceived as snobbery by the upper class audiences at Astor Place: "After the Astor Place Riot of 1849, entertainment in New York City was divided along class lines: opera was chiefly for the upper middle and upper classes, minstrel shows and melodramas for the middle class, variety shows in concert saloons for men of the working class and the slumming middle class."The plays of William Shakespeare were performed on the Broadway stage during the period, most notably by American actor Edwin Booth, internationally known for his performance as Hamlet. Booth played the role for a famous 100 consecutive performances at the Winter Garden Theatre in 1865, would revive the role at his own Booth's Theatre.
Other renowned Shakespeareans who appeared in New York in this era were Henry Irving, Tommaso Salvini, Fanny Davenport, Charles Fechter. Theatre in New York moved from downtown to midtown beginning around 1850, seeking less expensive real estate. In the beginning of the 19th century, the area that now comprises the Theater District was owned by a handful of families and comprised a few farms. In 1836, Mayor Cornelius Lawrence opened 42nd Street and invited Manhattanites to "enjoy the pure clean air." Close to 60 years theatrical entrepreneur Oscar Hammerstein I built the iconic Victoria Theater on West 42nd Street. Broadway's first "long-run" musical was a 50-performance hit called The Elves in 1857. In 1870, the heart of Broadway was in Union Square, by the end of the century, many theatres were near Madison Square. Theatres did not arrive in the Times Square area until the early 1900s, the Broadway theatres did not consolidate there until a large number of theatres were built around the square in the 1920s and 1930s.
New York runs continued to lag far behind those in London, but Laura Keene's "musical burletta" The Seven Sisters shattered previous New York records with a run of 253 performances. It was at a performance by Keene's troupe of Our American Cousin in Washington, D. C. that Abraham Lincoln was shot. The first theatre piece that conforms to the modern conception of a musical, adding dance and original music that helped to tell the story, is considered to be The Black Crook, which premiered in New York on September 12, 1866; the production was five-and-a-half hours long, but despite its length, it ran for a record-breaking 474 performances. The same year, The Black Domino/Between You, Me and the Post was the first show to call itself a "musical comedy". Tony Pastor opened the first vaudeville theatre one block east of Union Square in 1881, where Lillian Russell performed. Comedians Edward Harrigan and Tony Hart produced and starred in musicals on Broadway between 1878 and 1890, with book and lyrics by Harrigan and music by his father-in-law David Braham.
These musical comedies featured characters and situations taken from the everyday life of New York's lower classes and represented a significant step forward from vaudeville and burlesque, towards a more literate form. They starred high quality singers, instead of the women of questionable repute who had starred in earlier m