Maxine Elliott's Theatre

Maxine Elliott's Theatre was a Broadway theater located at 109 West 39th Street in Manhattan. Built in 1908, it was demolished in 1960. The theater was designed by architect Benjamin Marshall of the Chicago firm Marshall and Fox.

Maxine Elliott's Theatre
WOR Mutual Radio Theatre
CBS Radio Playhouse No. 5
CBS Television Studio No. 44/Studio 51
Maxine Elliott's Theatre before opening December 30, 1908
Address109 West 39th Street
Manhattan, New York City
United States
Coordinates40°45′12.06″N 73°59′9.46″W
OwnerThe Shubert Organization (1908-1956)
TypeBroadway
Capacity935
Construction
Opened1908
Demolished1960
ArchitectMarshall and Fox

History

The theatre was named for U.S. actress Maxine Elliott (1868-1940), who originally owned a 50 percent interest in it in partnership with The Shubert Organization. Elliott was one of the few women theater managers of her time. She leased it to the Federal Theatre in 1936; the following year, it was shut down by the government on the eve on the opening of Orson Welles's production of The Cradle Will Rock.

In 1941, the theatre became a radio studio and in 1948 was converted for television production, where the very first episodes of Ed Sullivan's Toast of the Town variety show originated. In 1956, Elliott's heirs sold her share to the Shuberts, who then sold the property. It was demolished in 1960 to make way for the Springs Mills Building. The theatre, built in a thriving theatre district, was the last remaining Broadway house below 41st Street.

Maxine Elliott's Theatre seated approximately 935 patrons. Throughout its lifetime, it housed a multitude of plays, including original works by George Bernard Shaw, John Millington Synge, Lady Augusta Gregory, Lord Dunsany, Lillian Hellman and Somerset Maugham. Only nine of its dozens of productions were musicals, including one opera, See America First by Cole Porter.

Notable productions

References


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