Posted by: Frederick Cornwell Sanders | 2013/10/12

“October 12, 1903” by Rick Sanders

42nd St., Manhattan in disrepair in 1985, befo...

42nd St., Manhattan in disrepair in 1985, before renovation (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In 1903, the Lyric Theater opens at 213 W 42nd St in New York City. It had many notable performances according to Wikipedia.

The Lyric Theatre hosted many notable shows in the early decades of the 20th century. Many plays by William Shakespeare were produced, sometimes multiple times, the most popular being The Merchant of Venice, which was first produced in 1904 and revived three times in 1907. Both Hamlet and Othello were produced three times between 1907 and 1914. Other Shakespearean classics included The Taming of the Shrew, The Twelfth Night, Romeo and Juliet, King Lear, Macbeth and Julius Caesar.[2]

Sarah Bernhardt appeared at the Lyric in 1906. In 1918, Sigmund Romberg‘s popular operetta Maytime was produced. In 1925, the Marx Brothers appeared in one of their earliest Broadway shows, The Cocoanuts, which in 1929 was adapted into an early sound film, the brothers’ first feature film.

Florenz Ziegfeld produced at least three shows there, including Rio Rita in 1927 and The Three Musketeers in 1928.

Cole Porter‘s musical Fifty Million Frenchmen opened in 1929.

As with many theaters, it went into decline but has since been rehabilitated as the Foxwoods Theater.

In 1934, it was converted into a movie theatre which it remained until closing in 1992. In 1996, its interior was demolished and the space was combined with that of the former Apollo Theatre to create the Ford Center, now known as the Foxwoods Theatre. Both the 42nd and 43rd Street facades of the Lyric were preserved and today form the front and back entrances of the Foxwoods Theatre.


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