Jujamcyn Theaters announced today the digital celebration plans for 100th Anniversary of the historic Walter Kerr Theatre, with a just-released interactive timeline. The timeline, a definitive history of the building, features a century’s worth of history: from the earliest shows, musicals, and revues, through its history as a television and radio studio, brief spans as an adult film theater and later a children’s theater, and finally as one of the most beloved houses on Broadway. The interactive timeline can be viewed at www.jujamcyn.com/walterkerrtimeline
The timeline features a lovingly curated collection of seldom seen ephemera including old production photos, Playbill covers, sheet music, and press clippings. In addition, the people who have made the Walter Kerr their home over the last century – actors, directors, designers, writers, house and crew members – have contributed memories of their time at the Kerr. Contributors include Stephanie J. Block, Crystal Dickinson, Tovah Feldshuh, Lewis Flinn, John Earl Jelks, Cherry Jones, Kenny Leon, Adriane Lenox, Andrew Lippa, Omar Metwally, Ruben Santiago-Hudson, Jeremy Shamos, Jason Tam, Frederick Weller, and more.
Audiences are invited to join the centennial celebration by sending Kerr memories either as short videos (under 3 minutes), photos, and/or short written statements to firstname.lastname@example.org
Jordan Roth, president of Jujamcyn Theaters, said, “It is no coincidence that this 100th anniversary of the Walter Kerr is also the beginning of spring. The theater’s current show Hadestown affirms that however deep in our personal, communal, societal darkness we may feel, spring will indeed come again. As much as we have all lost in this past year, we can place ourselves in this long legacy and see that we are at a turning point, that we are the turning point. To mark this milestone, we offer some moments of reminiscence, solace, celebration by revisiting the first hundred years of the Kerr – and by extension Broadway as a whole – and recommitting to the next hundred years. We join everyone who has found their own personal spring in these hundred years of the Walter Kerr in looking forward to the spring that is to come.”
Designed by Herbert J. Krapp, and built in 1921, as the Ritz Theatre and renamed the Walter Kerr Theatre in 1990 after the Pulitzer Prize-winning New York theater critic, the Kerr has been home to over 150 Broadway productions including four plays by August Wilson, his Pulitzer Prize winning The Piano Lesson, as well as Two Trains Running, Seven Guitars, and Gem of the Ocean. Seven winners of the Tony Award for Best Play have played the Kerr, Angels in America: Millennium Approaches; Angels in America: Perestroika; Love! Valour! Compassion!; Proof; Take Me Out; Doubt; and Clybourne Park, and two Tony Award-winning Best Musicals A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder and its current show, Hadestown.
Jujamcyn Theaters is recognized as a theatrical innovator for championing shows that push the boundaries of Broadway and for creating uniquely welcoming experiences for audiences and artists. Jujamcyn's five Broadway theaters are the St. James, Al Hirschfeld, August Wilson, Eugene O'Neill, and Walter Kerr. Current productions include the Tony Award-winning Best Musicals Hadestown and The Book of Mormon, and the currently Tony-nominated Moulin Rouge! The Musical. Jujamcyn's proud legacy includes Springsteen on Broadway, Angels in America (original and revival), Falsettos, Jersey Boys, The Producers, Clybourne Park, Spring Awakening, Fela!, and six plays by August Wilson.
Photo: Getty Image