Where will the 2011 Tony Awards ceremony be held? According to The New York Times, a prior booking spells the end of the Tony telecast’s 13-year stint at the 6,000-seat Radio City Music Hall. (The show moved to Radio City in 1997 and has been there ever since, with the exception of 1999, when the ceremony was held at the Gershwin Theatre.)
“We have been aware for some time that Radio City Music Hall is not available to us for the 2011 Tony Awards and we are currently exploring a dozen or so possibilities throughout Manhattan for next year’s ceremony,” officials from Tony Awards Productions told the Times in a statement.
Among the possible venues listed in the Times report were Madison Square Garden (!), the Beacon Theatre, the Apollo Theatre and the United Palace Theatre on 175th Street, known as “Reverend Ike’s church.” Among Broadway houses, speculation has centered on the Broadway and Marquis Theatres.
Although the Times report asserted that a Broadway theater would have to close an existing show for several days to accommodate the Tonys, the ceremony had been held in a Broadway house from 1967 (the year the event was first televised nationally) to 1996; before that, the Tonys were presented from a hotel ballroom. The initial move to Radio City in 1997 was considered controversial.