The home to the great Vaudeville acts like Will Rogers, Fanny Brice and Jack Benny, the Palace embodies the history of the Great White Way. Following renovations, the theater is once again an important large Broadway house in the heart of the Theater District. It veritably looms over Times Square.
Located on the southeast corner of 7th Avenue and 47th Street, the Palace Theatre was built in 1913. The Palace Theatre was originally home to the world's brightest vaudeville performers. It has played host to such wonderful entertainers as Will Rogers, Eddie Cantor, and Jack Benny. The premiere theatrical production was Sweet Charity starring Gwen Verdon and directed by Bob Fosse. At that time to "play the Palace" meant that an entertainer had reached the summit of his career so as Sarah Bernhardt, Eddie Cantor, Bob Hope, Fanny Brice, Sophie Tucker, Jack Benny.
During the Great Depression vaudeville suffered a decline because of the growing popularity of film and radio. In the 1930-s the Palace had to perform four shows a day instead of two and lowered its admission price. In 1932 the theater was converted to a movie house.
After a three-year renovation, the Palace reopened as one of the premiere houses on Broadway and remains as one of the cities hottest venues till nowadays.
In the 1950-s, there were a lot of efforts to revive vaudeville as the genre with shows by such names as Frank Sinatra, Judy Garland, Jerry Lewis, Danny Kaye, Betty Hutton, and Harry Belafonte. While the shows were successful, they did not lead to a revival of. On January 29, 1966, the Palace reopened as a legitimate theatre with the original production of the musical Sweet Charity, although for a period of time it showed films and presented concert performances by Bette Midler, Josephine Baker, Eddie Fisher, Shirley MacLaine, Diana Ross, and the like between theatrical engagements.