Helen Hayes Theatre
New York Times Hall
The Hayes Theater in 2007, showing Xanadu
|Address||240 West 44th Street|
Manhattan, New York City, US
|Owner||Second Stage Theater|
|Opened||March 12, 1912|
|Architect||Harry Creighton Ingalls|
Hayes Theater (initially known as the Little Theatre and Helen Hayes Theatre) is a Broadway theatre located at 240 West 44th Street in Midtown Manhattan. With 597 seats, it is the smallest theatre on Broadway. It was an ABC Television studio from 1957 to 1963. Later the syndicated talk show The Merv Griffin Show, before it moved to Los Angeles in 1972, was taped at the theatre.
Little Theatre/New York Times Hall
The Little Theatre was designed by the architect Harry Creighton Ingalls of the firm Ingalls & Hoffman, and built by Winthrop Ames; its name was chosen due to both the theatre's small size (with a seating capacity of only 300), and its goal to create intimate productions.
- The Terrible Meek by Charles Rann Kennedy
- The Flower of the Palace of Han by Charles Rann Kennedy and Louis Laloy
- A revival of The Affairs of Anatol by Arthur Schnitzler (as translated by Harley Granville-Barker)
- Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs by Jessie Graham White
- Rutherford and Son by K.G. Sowerby
In the 1920s, Herbert J. Krapp redesigned the theatre to increase its seating capacity to 590 and to improve its acoustics. The building was sold to The New York Times in 1931, and converted into a conference hall named 'New York Times Hall'.
Helen Hayes Theatre
The theatre was named for Helen Hayes in 1983 when the actress's existing namesake theatre on West 46th Street was demolished, along with the Morosco Theatre and the Bijou Theatre, to make space to construct the New York Marriott Marquis. According to Playbill.com, "The tribute was deemed fitting by the theatrical community, since the first theatre bearing the name of Helen Hayes, on West Forty-sixth Street, had been torn down in 1982 to make way for the Marriott Marquis Hotel."
In July 2008, it was announced that Markinson and the Tick family planned to sell the theatre to the Second Stage Theater company for an undisclosed price. It was announced on April 18, 2015, that the sale of Helen Hayes Theater to Second Stage had been completed. The sale price was $24.7 million. The first Second Stage production at the Hayes Theater was Lobby Hero, by Kenneth Lonergan, starring Michael Cera and Chris Evans, which opened in the spring of 2018, after renovations and upgrades. Second Stage became one of only four nonprofit theater companies that own and operate theaters on Broadway.
Box office record
- 1964: The Subject Was Roses
- 1975: Man On The Moon
- 1976: The Runner Stumbles
- 1977: A Party with Betty Comden & Adolph Green; Gemini
- 1979 Knockout
- 1980: Charlie and Algernon
- 1982: Torch Song Trilogy
- 1986: Mummenschanz: The New Show
- 1988: Romance/Romance
- 1989: Mandy Patinkin in Concert: Dress Casual
- 1990: Prelude to a Kiss
- 1993: Shakespeare For My Father
- 1995: Defending the Caveman
- 1997: The Last Night of Ballyhoo
- 1999: Epic Proportions
- 2000: Dirty Blonde
- 2001: By Jeeves
- 2002: Say Goodnight, Gracie
- 2003: Golda's Balcony
- 2005: Jackie Mason: Freshly Squeezed
- 2005: Latinologues
- 2006: Kiki & Herb: Alive on Broadway
- 2006: Jay Johnson: The Two and Only
- 2007: Xanadu
- 2008: Slava's Snowshow
- 2009: The 39 Steps
- 2010: Next Fall
- 2010: Colin Quinn Long Story Short
- 2011: Rock of Ages
- 2015: Dames at Sea
- 2016: The Humans
- 2018: Lobby Hero; Straight White Men; Torch Song
- 2019: What the Constitution Means to Me; Linda Vista
- 2020: Grand Horizons; Take Me Out
Radio and television studio
CBS used the theatre as a radio studio for a time, but it was converted to television by ABC in 1957 and renamed the Little Theatre. Dick Clark's Saturday night The Dick Clark Show originated there from February 1958 through September 1960. During this time, ABC also broadcast the daytime show Who Do You Trust? with Johnny Carson from the theatre. It was briefly renamed the Winthrop Ames Theatre in 1964. From 1965 through 1983, it was again the Little Theatre. During the early part of that period, Westinghouse Broadcasting taped the syndicated Merv Griffin Show there and later, The David Frost Show. The 1969–70 season of the game show Beat the Clock hosted by Jack Narz was also taped there.
- Bloom, Ken (2003). Broadway: An Encyclopedia. p. 303.
- "Helen Hayes Theatre". IBDB. The Broadway League. Retrieved 2013-02-12.
- Gordon, David. "Second Stage Theatre Buys Its Broadway Home" theatermania.com, April 18, 2015
- "New York Times Hall Listing" playbillvault.com, accessed April 18, 2015
- "Helen Hayes Theatre History" playbill.com, accessed April 18, 2015
- Gioia, Michael. "Sold! Second Stage Completes Million-Dollar Purchase for the Helen Hayes, Adding Fourth Non-Profit to Broadway" playbill.com, April 18, 2015
- McPhee, Ryan. "Chris Evans Will Make Broadway Debut Alongside Michael Cera in Lobby Hero" playbill.com, April 20, 2017
- Robin Pogrebin, Second Stage Will Set Up a Broadway Shop at Helen Hayes, New York Times, July 17, 2008, retrieved November 11, 2014
- "INDUSTRY INSIGHT: Weekly Grosses Analysis – 1/2 – Records for Once, Rock of Ages, Annie, Mormon & More!". BroadwayWorld.com. Retrieved 2013-02-12.
Rock of Ages set a new box office record at the Helen Hayes Theater, earning $745,205 in the week ending December 31, 2012. With the week's gross, Rock of Ages sets the Helen Hayes record for a nine-performance week for the second year in a row, topping its previous high of $652,172 for the week ending January 1, 2012.