“How to Succeed” was hilarious with its office humor that many can relate to. The show ended in standing ovations for Daniel Radcliffe and John Larroquette. Christopher J. Hanke, who played the corporate rival of Radcliffe’s character, also received a lot of cheers.
Our tour bus group waited outside the theatre to see if any of the cast would emerge for autographs. Hanke did and although I wasn’t close enough to the barracade to get his autograph, I was able to snap a few photos of him. The crowd was seven people deep between the barracade and where I stood.
More people were gathered across the street and above them was a woman watching the excitement from her window four stories up. The crowd was waiting for Radcliffe to step out of the theatre. The excitement building up gave me the sense of watching celebrities as they walk the Red Carpet. I was preparing myself for an explosion of screams and craziness, in the event that Radcliffe were to step outside to sign autographs. However, a middle-aged man in the crowd found out that he would be outside later that evening. My tour bus group would be heading home by then, so we all went back to taking in the city for a while.
Before I go on with the rest of our day in NYC, some of the history of the Al Hirschfeld Theatre can be found on the Playbill website. The list of stars who have performed on the Hirschfeld’s stage is impressive.
Located at 302 West 45th Street, the Hirschfeld is an ornate structure inside and out. I didn’t know when I was in NYC about the history of the Hirschfeld, or that of other theatres nearby. It wasn’t until after the trip that I decided to do a little research and began finding out some background on the city’s theatres.
So I found out that if you stay on West 45th Street and cross over 8th Avenue, you’ll eventually find the Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre. I didn’t go in its direction while in NYC, but found its proximity to the Hirschfeld via Google as I tried to get an idea of where all I went throughout the city from a map perspective.
According to IBDB (Internet Broadway Database), the Jacobs Theatre once went by the name Royale Theatre and was where James Dean once performed. I would discover even more Old Hollywood connections to places I saw or was in the vicinity of that day as I continued my post-trip research.
In the opposite direction to pass the Hirschfeld, cross 9th Avenue, turn left toward 44th Street, make a right there and you will find the Actors Studio. I saw where this was located prior to the trip while trying to plan ahead, looking around for nearby places to eat. Although I didn’t get a chance to go in the direction of the Actors Studio, I am hoping to see it another time. It also has many Old Hollywood names connected to it, including some of my favorites.
So that’s a little bit of history for now. Back to exploring NYC.
The four other girls and I made our way to the Stage Deli, which was decorated with collages of Old Hollywood stars and vintage Broadway posters. Check out the deli’s website for a history of legends who ate there, as well as current A-listers who make stops there.
The chicken salad sandwich I ate there was huge, delicious and very filling!
After dinner, we headed out to see more of Times Square, stopping at M & M World. A young guy working there was jamming to “Play That Funky Music” as we made our way up to the 2nd floor. There we found some semi-spheres of M & M candy mixed in colors to represent the flags of different countries.
We left M & M World after one or two of the other girls finished paying for their items. Our next stop was a small souvenir shop along 8th Avenue, not far from the Hirschfeld. I decided to buy the collector tin below, the last of my spending for the day.
My total spending in NYC came to around $75, with bus and Broadway tickets, lunch, dinner and two souvenirs. Not bad. We headed back to the bus, where it was parked facing the Film Center building and were among the first back on board.
After the excitement of the trip to NYC, I feel like the city person in me has come closer to the surface. I would say my city person rating is a six out of 10 now and I can’t wait to go back to NYC again. I loved the feeling of going around the city, feeling like a New Yorker myself as I shared the streets and sidewalks with huge crowds and passed street artists here and there.
Of course, I had “tourist” written all over me as I snapped photos along the way and even at the Stage Deli and in M & M World. Although, at one point I thought, “How would people not know that I’m a photography or journalism student studying there, new to the city?”
Until next time in NYC, I have a long list of places I want to see and others I want to re-visit after learning so much history. Some of the other photos I took there were of old buildings that I didn’t catch the name of at the time. I have since been able to identify some of them online and from there, looked up their history.
One building was the Music Box Theater and according to New York City Theatre, its history includes Humphrey Bogart, Marlon Brando and Paul Newman. Its exterior details, including columns, caught my attention so I took the photo below.
Another building was the Church of St. Malachy, or “the Actors’ Chapel” according to NYCAGO. I was only able to snap the photo below in passing.
Anyway it was fascinating to find out since my trip to NYC all the Old Hollywood history associated with the places I saw or was near to. Beforehand, I only knew of the Theatre District and could name some popular shows and some theatres. Now I know more details of which legends performed at what theatres, as well as the overall history of more theatres. It really heightened my awareness of the Old Hollywood connections all over NYC, a city of legends.