Ever imagined the rousing opening number “The Circle of Life” from Disney’s animated masterpiece The Lion King playing in front of a live audience at Broadway? Well, the wise executives at Disney did, leading to the premiere of The Lion King musical at the New Amsterdam theatre in 1996, before moving production to the Minskoff theatre in 2006. If you’re planning to revisit this Disney classic on stage, our Minskoff theatre seating chart guide is here for you.
The Lion King is a spirited, coming of age tale set in the majestic African jungles. While the protagonist Simba is a lion cub, the emotions and plot are singularly human and will resonate with audiences of all ages. With breathtaking production design and songs recreated straight out of the 1994 movie, The Lion King is a quintessential Broadway experience.
Great! Let’s begin our Minskoff theatre seating chart guide and help you find the best seats for The Lion King on Broadway!
Before undergoing major renovation to accommodate The Lion King in 2006, the Minskoff theatre was home to some revered Broadway productions.
The theatre opened in 1973 with Irene, starring the radiant Debbie Reynolds and went on to host iconic shows like Hello, Dolly!, West Side Story, Cabaret, Sunset Boulevard, and Saturday Night Fever, amongst other classics. Named after the illustrious real estate family Minskoff and Sons, the Minskoff is the third largest theatre in the Broadway district.
The Minskoff is located on the third floor of the renowned One Astor Plaza and managed by the Nederlander Organisation, as part of their nine theatres in New York City. The theatre was designed to accommodate grand musicals that required more stage space than your regular Broadway show. Architects Kahn and Jacobs brought this vision to life with the artistic flair that is so becoming of all their designs.
The Minskoff theatre features a walkway that runs from 44th to 45th Street and an expansive lobby that features beautiful artwork and a classy design. After the renovation for The Lion King, the main lobby was redesigned to showcase hand-painted, gold-leaf carved displays, which decorate the theatre’s interiors. From the entrance lobby, escalators lead patrons to the third level where they can check their coats, buy snacks and grab a couple of drinks. An additional escalator at the third level brings guests to the fourth level which houses the orchestra.
Given that it’s on the third floor of a 55-level building, the Minskoff is situated at quite an elevation (almost 35 feet), making it an unique experience for Broadway enthusiasts.
With a seating capacity of 1621 spread across two sections, the orchestra and the mezzanine, the Minskoff theatre has plenty of space to display the larger than life vision of The Lion King. Let’s look at both sections of the theatre in detail and help you find the best seats.
Minskoff Theater Orchestra
The orchestra section in the Minskoff theatre is one of the biggest in Broadway with over 1100 seats spread across 28 rows of varying lengths. The orchestra can be divided into three subsections namely, left orchestra, center orchestra, and right orchestra.
The left orchestra subsection has 26 rows in total, labelled A to ZZZ (this section skips row M and N which is where the orchestra overhang begins from). The seats are numbered 1 to 15 (odd only) and move right to left towards the aisle. This subsection offers a fair view of the stage, barring the extreme corner seats and the seats in the last few rows which aren’t the best place to view a show in any case. But given the expansive stage and lively performances of The Lion King, patrons seated in the left orchestra won’t leave disappointed.
Next up is the center orchestra of the Minskoff theatre. The biggest of the lot, this subsection has a full set of 28 rows, extending from A to ZZZ (skipping row I due to theatre superstitions). The first few rows of the center orchestra are some of the best in theatre, offering guests a completely unobstructed view of the stage and all its proceedings. The centre rows of this section are arguably the best in the theatre, being both close enough to the stage yet not too close. The last few seats are something you can stand to avoid if there are other options available in the front orchestra section.
The even numbered right orchestra offers similar viewing angles to the left subsection with 26 rows in total. Just like the left orchestra, its right counterpart offers an average view of the stage and is priced cheaper than other seats in the orchestra.
The Minskoff orchestra seats are priced in accordance with the general pricing structure of most Broadway theatre. The centre section is the most expensive, with the cost for seats in rows D-L matching the cost of front mezzanine seats. The left and right orchestra follow a similar price pattern with prices being similar to center mezzanine seats and decreasing with each row.
I was on row R orchestra, great seats. The space between seats is not big so I had a bit of trouble walking in/out to visit bathroom during intermission.
– Crossonero, TripAdvisor
A beautiful theatre. Does not appear to be a bad seat in the house. We sat 8th row center orchestra and the seats were fabulous (very comfortable too). The acoustics were excellent. Only complaint we heard was there are not enough bathrooms.
– Reggae, TripAdvisor
We came here to watch the Lion King. It was amazing. The theater is smaller than you would think, so any seat in the orchestra is perfect. We sat in Row T seats 110 and 109 and the view was perfect.
– Mills, TripAdvisor
Minskoff Theater Mezzanine
The second and only elevated section of the Minskoff, the mezzanine is relatively smaller than the orchestra, with a little over 500 seats spread across 11 rows, numbered 101 to 156 moving left to right.
The front mezzanine seats of any theatre are usually considered the best of the lot and that stands true for the Minskoff as well. Rows A-C, seats 119-129, offer the cleanest view of the stage in all its wondrous glory. The view remains good as you move a couple of rows back but the last few rows, which are the last rows of the theatre as well, can be too far off from all the action and some patron reviews have complained about the muffled sound quality around those seats.
The corner rows of the mezzanine are similar to the corner rows of the orchestra, but given that the mezzanine seats are at a greater distance to the stage, they are cheaper. Our suggestion, if you’re looking for cheap tickets for The Lion Kings, go for the corner mezzanine seats over corner orchestra seats.
The front few mezzanine rows are amongst the most expensive in the theatre, rivaling the price of premium orchestra seats. The middle and side mezzanine seats are priced similarly to the left and right orchestra seats, with rear mezzanine seats being the cheapest of the lot.
Lion King was amazing! Very well maintained and lovely theater! Theater staff was friendly and helpful finding our seats. We were on the mezzanine, 1st row, left side, and loved our seats. Bar staff was funny and suggested very good drinks. The whole experience was worth every single penny! –
Our family enjoyed front row Mezzanine seating for show and we had a very good experience. The visibility from our seating was excellent and the show was superb.
We sat in the first row (in the center) on the Mezzanine level. Our seats were great. We had plenty of room for our long legs, there was no one seating in front of us to block our views, and we had a wonderful view of the entire stage. I will have no problem choosing the same seats again for a future performance. The staff gave me complimentary booster seats for my children. Just note that booster seats are offered on a first come first serve basis. –
- The restroom queue can be pretty long and there’s a high possibility of you missing parts of the second act if you need to visit the restroom during the intermission. Use the restroom before the show begins to avoid missing the opening number of the show’s second act.
- The air-conditioning inside the theatre has been known to be faulty so dress accordingly. You can always bring an extra coat or pullover if it becomes too chilly, but chances are you won’t need to use it.
- There are two bars in the main lobby, two bars located on the theatre’s orchestra level, and two bars located on the mezzanine where various mixed drinks and sodas can be purchased.
- You are allowed to bring only water to the theatre and all other outside eatables and liquids are prohibited inside the Minskoff.
- Male and female restrooms are located on the orchestra and mezzanine levels of the theatre.
- If you’ve tickets for the front row of the orchestra section and happen to be late for the performance, you’ll be seated 25 minutes after the show begins. This is done to ensure that the performers don’t get distracted. To avoid this situation, arrive at least 45 minutes before the show is supposed to begin.
Restaurants Near Minskoff Theatre
Like most Broadway theatres, the Minskoff is also located within walking distance of Times Square, which means there are plenty of eateries around.
Here are some of the best places to eat around Minskoff theatre:
1. The Lamb’s Club: A clubby, art-deco style restaurant in 132 West 44th Street, with cocktails and steaks to die for!
2. Carmine’s Italian Restaurant: Family-style Italian food served in massive quantities in a no frills diner.
3. Orso: A theatre district classic, Orso in 322, West 46th Street, brings gourmet Tuscan cuisine to New York with ample aplomb.
4. Sardi’s: This iconic, continental diner is lined with caricatures of showbiz celebrities making it a hit with locals and tourists alike.
5. Planet Hollywood: Get your fix of Hollywood memorabilia and good ol’ American fare in 1540, Broadway.
6. John’s Pizzeria: Serving their trademark thin-crust pizzas since 1929, John’s Pizzeria in 260, West 44th Street, is a classic NYC eatery.
Looking for other options? There are many more iconic NYC Theatre District restaurants you can check out.
The Minskoff theatre is located at 200 West 45th Street. Given its location, getting there is a breeze. You can take the subway, the bus or your own vehicle. The subway trains available are the 1, 9, C or E train to 50th Street or the N or R train to 49th Street. Some of the buses plying to theatre district are M104, M42, M6, M10, and M27/50.
You’ll find ample parking spots on 46th and 47th Streets between Broadway & 8th Avenue. There’s also additional parking available on 8th Avenue between 46th & 47th Street
Buy Discounted Lion King Tickets
Wondering how to score cheap tickets for The Lion King? Get great last minute deals on The Lion King tickets on Headout, your one stop, on-demand mobile concierge.
Choose your show, select your seats, and show up at the theatre on the day of the experience. In the meantime, a Headout representative will take care of the legwork and meet you at the theatre before your show to hand-deliver your tickets.
Have further questions about the Minskoff theatre seating chart? Need details about specific seats? We’ve got you. Leave a question in the comments section below and we’ll answer it for you.
The post Minskoff Theatre Seating Chart | The Lion King Guide appeared first on Headout Blog.
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