Live theater has withstood the test of time as a fantastic way to immerse yourself in another world. Sure, New York is great when you want to catch a Broadway show. But, America is home to a variety of entertainment hubs where you can enjoy a rich, diverse theatrical community. With top-notch theater cities located throughout the country, there’s no excuse to not charter a flight and take advantage of a fantastic Broadway show.
Top Cities to Watch Broadway Shows
In Boston, conservatories and theaters abound. The city has had an appreciation for great theater throughout American history and has earned accolades for its historic venues and world-class shows written by playwrights such as Eugene O’Neill and Tennessee Williams. This appreciation is even seen in its education system with universities like Boston Conservatory and Emerson College having some of the best performing arts programs in the nation. Some of the companies that call “The Hub” home include The Lyric Stage, Speakeasy Stage Company, and the Huntington Theatre Company. Boston’s Downtown Theater District includes the Shubert, Paramount and Wang theaters, as well as the landmark Opera House. The American Repertory Theater, or A.R.T., in Cambridge, has a long history of creating Tony-winning shows.
While it’s the improv capital of the world, Chicago has one of the youngest, most thriving theater scenes in the nation that regards the medium as a limitless art. The Steppenwolf Theatre Company and Marriott Theatre sell hundreds of thousands of tickets each year and have the largest subscription bases of any musical theaters on the globe. The number of theater groups in Chicago is as large as it is diverse. The Northlight Theatre offers a more intimate setting. Music Theater Works primarily casts area talent and pays all its performers. You can also catch Broadway shows at the Goodman and Chicago theatres.
After New York City, Minneapolis has more theater seats per capita than any other U.S. city thanks in part to government arts funding. One of the city’s shining stars is the Tony-Award-winning Guthrie Theater, architectural eye-candy that has entertained theatergoers for more than 50 years. The Hennepin Theatre Trust is also an area mainstay with four buildings in the area’s “Theatre Row”: the Pantages, State, Orpheum and New Century theaters. Leading a new guard in productions—from small performances to touring Broadway shows—include the New Century Theatre, Cowles Center for Dance and the Performing Arts, and the Brave New Workshop.
The bustling nation’s capital has a storied relationship with live theater and the most per-capita number of theater productions annually. A few blocks from the White House is the landmark National Theatre where many musicals and renowned plays have premiered to diplomats. The Studio Theatre, Warner Theatre, Lincoln Theatre, Shakespeare Theatre Company, Arena Stage, and Woolly Mammoth add to the thriving arts scene. One of the most incredible performance spaces and prominent venues is the Kennedy Center for Performing Arts, a multi-dimensional facility on the Potomac River that serves as the nation’s cultural center with more than 3,500 performances annually.