Radio City Music Hall | A Historic Entertainment Venue

by Denise Marie

Radio City Music Hall has been a prominent fixture in Midtown Manhattan since the 1930’s. Nested into the Rockefeller Center, this historic venue has hosted world-famous musicians, orchestras and other entertainers. It’s hard to miss the signature marquee signs above the main entrances to this entertainment hub in the heart of New York City.

Shows and Events

The Christmas Spectacular is without a doubt the most popular show at Radio City Music Hall. Scheduled during the weeks leading up to Christmas, this annual spectacle has been presented since the early 1930’s. The beautiful Rockettes are the stars of the 90-minute show that celebrates the magic of the holiday season in the Big Apple. These skilled precision dancers are best known for their synchronized high kicks and other maneuvers that truly amaze the audience.

The Christmas Spectacular also features classic Christmas jingles and other tunes that will surely get spectators in the spirit for the holiday. From music concerts and awards shows to comedy acts and sports conferences, Radio City Music Hall also hosts an array of other diverse events throughout the year.

You don’t have to buy tickets to any events to explore this iconic entertainment venue. Led by friendly staff members with passion for NYC’s rich culture, guided behind-the-scenes tours are available throughout the year. You’ll get the chance to view the historic Grand Foyer that’s decorated with dramatic Art Deco installations. Murals and tubular chandeliers are some other notable pieces inside the 60-foot foyer.

You’ll also gain access to the exclusive Roxy Suite, which is typically reserved for VIP guests during events. Additionally, the guided tours take visitors to the Grand Stage in the main auditorium. Three mezzanine levels and an orchestra level surround the main stage. The music hall is usually illuminated by a distinct red hue with an orange flare. The oval-shaped auditorium is also optimized for pleasant acoustics, especially during live concerts.

Radio City Stage Door Tour

Click to book your Radio City Stage Door Tour

Location and Getting There

Radio City Music Hall is prominently situated at the corner of 6th Avenue and 50th Street in Midtown Manhattan. This signature attraction is part of the Rockefeller Center that includes several skyscrapers. The B, C, D, Q and several other lines of the NYC Subway stop within walking distance of the mixed-used complex.

Click to visit the Radio City Music Hall official website.

Note: This information can change without notice. Confirm all details directly with the company in question.

Carnegie Hall | A Century of Outstanding Music & Concerts

by Denise Marie

Built in the late 19th century, Carnegie Hall is one of the most iconic music venues in New York City. This historic entertainment center features three original halls that have been thoroughly preserved. A museum and guided tours provide great insight on this renowned concert hall that still hosts weekly shows.

History and Facts

One of the wealthiest industrialists in America during the late 19th century, Andrew Carnegie paid for the construction of a grand concert hall that would bear his name. Based in New York City, William Tuthill designed the building in the Renaissance Revival style.

In the spring of 1891, Carnegie Hall opened as one of the premier entertainment venues in the nation. Notable Russian composer Tchaikovsky was one of the first performers at the venue. Since then, the hall has hosted some of the world’s most renowned orchestras.

Having deep connections to New York City, legendary Jazz artists have also taken the stages at this iconic hall. Just after celebrating its centennial anniversary, the facility was heavily renovated to meet modern standards. In the late 1980’s, the Carnegie Hall Tower transformed the dynamic skyline of Manhattan. Standing 757 feet tall, this modern skyscraper was designed by the renowned architect Cesar Pelli.

Carnegie Hall - Isaac Stern Auditorium / Ronald O. Perelman Stage

Carnegie Hall (Photo Credit: Jeff Goldberg / Esto)

Facilities and Amenities

Established in 1991, the Rose Museum presents the history of Carnegie Hall in chronological order. This small museum displays photographs of notable performances and other events in this legendary concert hall. Manuscripts with music sheets and autographed posters are some other highlights in the galleries.

Visitors are also invited to the guided tours that normally last just longer than an hour. The tour offers behind-the-scenes views of Composers Alley and the Perelman Stage inside the Stern Auditorium. Traditionally known as the Main Hall, the elegant auditorium has more than 2,700 seats. Featuring just under 600 seats, Zanker Hall is reserved for more intimate performances by Jazz and pop artists. Additionally, the 268-seat Weill Recital Hall hosts concerts, speeches and other presentations.

Location and Getting There

Standing on 7th Avenue in Midtown Manhattan, Carnegie Hall is best accessible by the NYC Subway. The N, Q, R and W trains stop at the 57th Street station that’s located just across from the concert venue. The M7 and M104 buses of the MTA also stop near this historic music center. There are also plenty of parking garages in the Theater District.

Click to visit the Carnegie Hall official website.

Note: This information can change without notice. Confirm all details directly with the company in question.

Apollo Theater | Historic & Legendary Music Venue in Harlem, NYC

by Denise Marie

Having enough seats for just more than 1,500 spectators, the Apollo Theater is a historic music venue that’s tied to the Harlem Renaissance. Located in Manhattan, this iconic theater has hosted some of the most successful artists in Jazz, R&B and other genres.

The legendary Apollo Theater

Click for more on the legendary Apollo Theater

History and Highlights

The Apollo Theater evolved from a performance venue that was known by a different name in the early 20th century. Specializing in burlesque, Hurtig and Seamon’s New was one of the premier theaters of its kind in the 1920’s. Unfortunately, the end of the Roaring Twenties era also marked the rapid decline of this intimate facility in Manhattan.

The Great Depression exacerbated the condition and fate of Hurtig and Seamon’s New. The mayor of New York City ultimately shut down this venue and several other burlesque hubs. Shortly after, the legendary venue reopened with a new mission and vibe.

At the height of the Great Depression, Harlem already had a thriving African American cultural scene. The renovated theater naturally sparked a revival in Jazz and other musical genres that essentially originated from the tight-knit neighborhood. Leo Brecher and Frank Schiffman managed the venue from the middle of the 1930’s until the end of the 1970’s.

A brief closure marked a new era of the Apollo Theater in the 1980’s. Since then, the facility has been a major multimedia hub for various entertainment sectors with a focus on the local African American community. Amateur Night is perhaps the most famous aspect of the Apollo Theater.

Dating back to the club’s early days, this event has allowed countless performers the opportunities to become famous. Some legendary singers who have won the Amateur Night contest include Ella Fitzgerald, Gladys Knight and Dionne Warwick. Today, the iconic music hall still offers amateur singers the chance to impress an audience on the stage.

Click to book your New York CityPass

Visiting the Apollo Theater

Centrally located in Harlem, the Apollo Theater is easily accessible by the NYC subway. You can take four different lines to the 125th Street station, which is located underneath the busy St. Nicholas Avenue. The subway trains that serve this underground station make multiple stops in Midtown Manhattan. Alternatively, you could ride the subway to the 125th Street Station that’s situated below Malcolm X Boulevard.

Additionally, several MTA buses stop just around the corner of this historic theater. For example, the M2 route runs along Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Boulevard. The M10 route makes frequent stops on Frederick Douglass Boulevard. Taxis and other vehicles should quickly drop off passengers near the venue’s main entrance on Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard, which merges with W. 125th Street.

Click to visit the Apollo Theater official website.

Note: This information can change without notice. Confirm all details directly with the company in question.