All Tickets, which has discount tickets for Annie and is offering COMPS, thinks that the booking of the musical about Little Orphan Annie at the Palace Theatre makes for a great fit. You’ve got Annie, the little girl who goes from rags to riches, and the Palace, which was formerly known as the Mecca for vaudeville performers, which has gone from riches to rags to riches again. Plus, both are tops when it comes to entertainment!
It’s true that like Annie, the Palace Theatre has been through some rough times and great times. When considering a group theatre experience seeing a fantastic show like this wonderful Broadway musical in such a rich historical venue and at low discount prices affords audiences a priceless experience.
Playing the Palace
If you were a vaudeville act in the early part of the 20th century and were booked at the Palace, then you had reached the pinnacle. This creation of this performance space, which was build by San Francisco vaudeville producer Martin Beck, was an attempt to create some competition for the monopolistic Keith-Albee group.
Benjamin Franklin Keith and Edward Franklin Albee dominated the East Coast vaudeville circuit. Along with owning some of the biggest and best vaudeville houses throughout the East and into the Midwest, Albee created the United Bookings Office, which controlled the contracts of just about every major vaudeville performer in the US.
The 1,740-seat Palace Theatre opened on March 24, 1913, operating as a vaudeville house until approximately 1929. The irony is Martin Beck never did challenge the preeminence of Keith-Albee. In order to contract the top performers in America, who were controlled by Albee and Keith, Albee requested that Beck award him with three-quarters ownership of the Palace Theatre. Beck agreed and with that the theatre, which will next feature the musical Annie, became the showcase for Keith-Albee.
The biggest performers played the Palace. Fanny Brice, Ed Wynn, Ethel Barrymore, Bert Williams, Lillian Russell, the Marx Brothers and Will Rogers are just a few of the stars who graced the stage of this historic performance space.
Before Going Legit
Annie is playing in what has been a legitimate Broadway theatre since 1966 when Sweet Charity opened. (The term “legit theatre,” “legitimate theatre,” or the use of corresponding terms such as “stage” or “house” in place of “theatre” refers in the UK to a licensed theatre and in the US to a theatre that shows plays and musicals as opposed to variety, vaudeville and other such types of entertainment.) But before going legit, the Palace went down a road that was well traveled by many other performance venues.
In 1929, as vaudeville died and the economy took a major nosedive, Joseph P. Kennedy took over the venue and turned it into a movie house, renaming it the RKO Palace. Orson Wells’ Citizen Kane premiered at the movie palace in 1941.
In 1949, producer Sol Schwartz revamped the performance space in an attempt to revive the great days of vaudeville. He showed eight acts and then a feature film. Great stars, including Frank Sinatra, Jerry Lewis, Danny Kaye and Harry Belafonte played the Palace, and in 1951, Judy Garland broke the record at the venue with a 19-week engagement.
Legit at Last
The Nederlander Organization transformed the Palace Theatre into a legit stage with the premiere of Sweet Charity. And although over the years the façade and pretty much the entire theatre has been surrounded by a hotel and huge Broadway billboards, the Palace Theatre is still a royal place to play.
Annie The Musical
The musical Annie, which will star Lilla Crawford in the title role and with Anthony Warlow as Daddy Warbucks and Katie Finneran as Miss Hannigan, takes place in 1933 during the Great Depression when the Palace Theatre was then doing duty as a movie theatre. Of course, both the Palace Theatre and Annie are NYC institutions, making this connection between theatre and musical a winning one.
Group Discounts and COMPS
Annie is a wonderful show for groups, and you’ll feel like you’re on Easy Street when you avail yourself of our discount seats and COMP TICKETS. Contact All Tickets today. Don’t wait until Tomorrow! When it comes to ticket prices it doesn’t have to be a Hard Knock Life. (If you can’t have fun with a musical, what can you have fun with?)
All Tickets’ exclusive COMP PROMO offers 1 comp for every 30 tickets purchased (maximum of 4 per performance per group) and is in effect until September 30, 2012. Annie previews October 3rd and opens November 8th. Call All Tickets today at 800-922-0716 or contact us by clicking here.