When someone mentions Broadway, one typically thinks of a location found in the theatre district located in Manhattan in New York City.
Interestingly though, it's not just that specific location in NYC that determines if a show is Broadway or Off-Broadway. It is simply the number of seats in the theatre. Theatres with a house larger than 499 seats are considered Broadway Theaters. Theatres with houses between 99 and 499 seats are Off-Broadway. Any theatre less than 99 seats are considered Off-Off-Broadway.
Whether a show is Broadway, Off-Broadway or Off-Off-Broadway, it has nothing to do with the quality of the show.
Then, because we can't all get to New York, there are Touring Broadway shows. The most important thing to know about Touring Broadway shows is that the content of the shows is the exact same as those in New York City. The main differences are the cast and the set.
The Touring Broadway show you will see will not be the original cast. The actors on Broadway are often times going to be more “famous” than the ones on the tour. Touring Broadway shows will have excellent actors and typically there will be at least one big star on the show to help with the publicity of the show and help draw people in.
On Broadway, in NYC the show is performed night after night on the same stage, often for years. This allows the set designers to do things that are logistically very challenging on the road. As the show is touring they are not in one place that long and the set needs to move with them, so it needs to be more mobile and more flexible in its design as the various stages the show will travel to will be different sizes and shapes. For an example of this, you would not see an actual helicopter on the stage of Miss Saigon in a touring Broadway show but you would have seen it in the original play on Broadway.
Lifestyle Tours goes to many Touring Broadway shows bringing local travelers to see these famous productions. We travel to The Fox Theater and STAGES in St. Louis, The Tennessee Performing Arts Center in Nashville, The Kentucky Center for the Performing Arts in Louisville, and Broadway in Chicago.
Join us as we travel to see exciting Broadway shows at these amazing venues.