Majestic Theatre (Columbus Circle)

The Majestic Theatre was a theatre located at 5 Columbus Circle, the present site of the Time Warner Center. Designed in 1903 by John H. Duncan, the architect of Grant's Tomb, it was built at a time that Columbus Circle was expected to become a theatre district. Initially, the theatre, which seated about 1355, hosted original musicals and operettas, including The Wizard of Oz and Babes in Toyland, and some plays. It was renamed Park Theatre in 1911, opening with The Quaker Girl, and it again presented plays, musicals and operettas. The Shuberts, Florenz Ziegfeld and Billy Minsky, in succession, owned the house but did not find success there. In 1925, it was purchased by William Randolph Hearst, renamed Cosmopolitan Theatre, and played movies as well as live theatre. During the period it was used as a playhouse, its last name was amended to include International Theatre.[1]

In 1949, NBC leased the theatre, and made it into a television studio rechristened as NBC International Theatre, with the Admiral Broadway Revue being one of the first TV shows aired from this location. In 1953, the venue hosted a portion of the 25th Academy Awards, which was the first Academy Awards to be broadcast, as well as the first to be aired from both New York City and Los Angeles.

The theater was demolished in 1954 to allow for wider sidewalks in front of the New York Coliseum,[1] which in turn was torn down to make way for the Time Warner Center in 2000.


  1. "International Theatre", Internet Broadway Database, accessed June 8, 2013

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