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Public Theater

Info: Special open captioning performances will take place for all Shakespeare in the Park productions.
Please visit the Shakespeare in the Park section of our website, dates and details will be posted when available.
For information about any accessibility issues, please call 212.260.2400.


425 Lafayette St
New York, NY 10003

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By Subway:

6 to Astor Place; R/W to 8th St/NYU

Theater Description:

Public Theater

The Public Theater is a New York City arts organization founded as The Shakespeare Workshop in 1954 by Joseph Papp, with the intention of showcasing the works of up-and-coming playwrights and performers. It is headquartered at 425 Lafayette Street in the formerAstor Library in the East Village section of Lower Manhattan. The venue opened in 1967, mounting the world-premiere production of the musical HAIR as its first show. It is led by Artistic Director Oskar Eustis and Executive Director Patrick Willingham.[1]The Public is dedicated to embracing the complexities of contemporary society and nurturing both artists and audiences, as it continues Joseph Papp's legacy of creating a place of inclusion and a forum for ideas.[2]In addition to five theater venues – the Shiva, the Martinson, the LuEsther Hall, the Anspacher and the Newman – the site is home to Joe's Pub, a cabaret-style setting used for new work, musical performances, spoken-word artists and soloists.The Public also operates the Delacorte Theater in Central Park, where it presents Shakespeare in the Park, one of New York City's most beloved summer traditions. New York natives and visitors alike have been enjoying free Shakespeare in Central Park since performances began in 1954.[3] Notable productions in recent years include: The Merchant of Venice in 2010, featuring Al Pacino as Shylock; Twelfth Night in 2009, with Anne Hathaway; the 40th anniversary production of Hair in 2008; and Mother Courage And Her Children, with Meryl Streep and Kevin Kline.