03 May 2009

Henry Miller's Theatre Back in Business

After years of work, Henry Miller's Theatre on 43rd Street is back in business. To be run and operated by the huge Roundabout Theatre Company (four theatre spaces and counting), the 1918 theatre was closed and gutted a number of years back when land owner Douglas Durst and the Bank of America decided to build a 55-story tower there.

They decided to retain a theatre on the ground floor, however, but not the same theatre. The 1,055-seat auditorium is pretty much all new. But certain elements were kept, not least of which is the original neo-Georgian facade. Among the other elements, my favorite is the old sign seen below.

And, yes, it is formally called Henry Miller's Theatre, not the Henry Miller Theatre. Just a quirk in the nomenclature.


Blayze said...

I wish they didn't gut the theatre entirely. It has an ugly, 'modern', doctor's office hallway look to it now or so that interior shot displays. I'm happy they salvaged some items like that ionic column's volute, that quirky little sign, and thankfully the facade itself is landmarked.

Yes, I know I'm being picky here but theatre interiors are some of the most majestic indoor spaces of New York, rivaled perhaps only by Grand Central Terminal's concourse.

Even the AMC Movie Theater on 42nd Street did a better job at preserving some elements of it's old theatre heritage.

A far greater effort is the fairly new Hilton theatre, they did a wonderful job at reconstructing and incorporating old architectual features from the Lyric and Apollo theatres into a theatre which in essence feels like it could match the Richard Rodgers or the Shubert.

Stephen Rourke said...

Hear, hear, Blayze!