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Q: Off-broadway and off-off broadway plays and musicals. ( Answered 5 out of 5 stars,   1 Comment )
Subject: Off-broadway and off-off broadway plays and musicals.
Category: Arts and Entertainment > Performing Arts
Asked by: dho1115-ga
List Price: $10.00
Posted: 08 Apr 2006 23:25 PDT
Expires: 08 May 2006 23:25 PDT
Question ID: 716979
Why are some plays and musicals called "off-broadway" and some called
"off-off broadway"? Does it have anything to do with the quality of
that play or musical? Is there someone who determines whether a play
or musical is "off-broadway" or "off-off broadway"?
Subject: Re: Off-broadway and off-off broadway plays and musicals.
Answered By: bobbie7-ga on 09 Apr 2006 00:12 PDT
Rated:5 out of 5 stars
Hello Ddho1115,  

The difference between a Broadway production and an Off-Broadway
production has to do with the number of seats in a theater.The
classification of theatres is governed by  the Actors' Equity

?Broadway theaters must have 500 or more seats. An Off-Broadway
theater must have 100 to 499 seats. An Off-Off-Broadway theater has 99
seats or less.?

?The Broadway theatres are the larger houses, around Times Square,
that appeal to a mass audience. Off-Broadway are smaller houses (100
-400 seats) offering less commercial productions--often experimental.
Off-Off Broadway refers to even smaller houses (often 100 seats or
less) presenting informal small scale productions. The classification
of theaters is governed by language in Actors' Equity contracts. The
Actors' Equity Association (commonly known simply "Equity") is the
trade union of American theatrical performers and stage managers.? Theater Jargon

?Off-Off-Broadway refers to plays or musicals performed in New York
City in smaller theatres than (professional) Broadway productions or
(still professional) off-Broadway productions.?

?Off-off-Broadway theaters are defined as theaters that have fewer
than 100 seats, presenting informal small-scale productions. The shows
can range from quite professional and successful productions by
established artists like Richard Foreman's Ontological-Hysteric
Theatre in the East Village, or The Flea Theater in Tribeca, to
extremely small amateur performances all over the City.?
Wikipedia:  Off-Off-Broadway


?Off-Broadway plays or musicals are performed in New York City in
smaller theatres than Broadway, but larger than Off-Off-Broadway,

?Off-Broadway theatres (venues) are those with 100 to 499 seats. The
classification of theatres is governed by language in Actors' Equity
contracts, rather than by whether the theatre has a Broadway address.?

?Generally these productions housed in off-Broadway theatres are less
expensive, less publicized, less well-known and feature less-famous
performers. The smaller scale often allows more experimental,
challenging work to be presented. Many groups which produce
off-Broadway shows are non-profit rather than commercial producers,
meaning they can more easily afford to take chances on plays which
might not be commercial hits; however, they still have to ensure
enough interest in their plays to have a large enough subscriber base
to keep them financially sound. Some commercial productions have found
a profitable niche in Off-Broadway venues which allows long runs in
their original theatres.?
Wikipedia: Off-Broadway

?Broadway theatre is often considered the highest professional form of
theatre in the United States. Broadway theatre, or a Broadway show,
refers to a performance (usually a play or musical) staged in one of
the thirty-nine larger professional theatres located in New York City,
with 500 seats or more, that appeal to the mass audience. Along with
London's West End theatre, Broadway theatre is usually considered of
the highest level of English language theatre.?
Wikipedia: Broadway

?Some theater goers prefer the more experimental, challenging, and
intimate performances possible in smaller theatres, which are referred
to as Off-Broadway and Off-Off-Broadway (though some may be physically
located on or near Broadway). The classification of theatres is
governed by language in Actors' Equity Association contracts.?
?Some theatres (by adding or subtracting seats) can convert from
Off-Broadway to Broadway and vice versa.?


Off Broadway and Off Off Broadway

?These terms refer primarily to theatre size rather than location.
Generally speaking, playhouses in Manhattan with fewer than 499 seats
are considered ?Off Broadway?.
Playhouses with fewer than 100 seats are generally called Off Off
Broadway. Off and Off Off Broadway theatres are located in various
neighborhoods throughout Manhattan.?

I Love New York Theater

I hope the information provided is helpful!

Search terms used: 
Broadway Off-Broadway Off-Off-Broadway 
"off-off-broadway" number of seats equity

Best regards,
dho1115-ga rated this answer:5 out of 5 stars and gave an additional tip of: $2.00
Thanks for the great answer.

Subject: Re: Off-broadway and off-off broadway plays and musicals.
From: bobbie7-ga on 10 Apr 2006 21:23 PDT
Thank you very much for the five stars and nice tip!

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