Radio City Music Hall

1260 6th Avenue,
New York, NY 10020

Unfavorite 109 people favorited this theater

Showing 176 - 200 of 3,211 comments

Comfortably Cool
Comfortably Cool on April 19, 2016 at 7:48 am

Ads posted for “A Chorus Line” in the Photos Section may have created a false impression that the movie actually played an engagement at the Music Hall. But this so-called “world premiere” on the night of December 9th, 1985 was actually for just one screening only as part of a fund-raising charity affair. It was on the same night as the annual lighting of the Christmas tree in Rockefeller Center, so the area was already packed with sightseers by the time celebrities and VIPs started arriving at the Music Hall.

babyboomerdennis1952 on March 22, 2016 at 8:13 am

my colleague working on the organ restoration back in the 90’s told me many interesting stories of Dick Leibert in past years however,I promised I’d never publish them.from what I gather,he was a really interesting was a very interesting guy.

RobertEndres on March 21, 2016 at 11:17 am

Speaking of which, did anyone here see the premiere of “BvS” last night at the Hall presented in DolbyVision laser projection and Dolby “Atmos” sound? The picture was presented on a 70' screen and from a couple of local comments both it and the sound were spectacular.

LuisV on March 21, 2016 at 6:25 am

That is very welcome news indeed, if Radio City winds up getting some of the bigger premieres previously hosted by the Ziegfeld.

Mike (saps)
Mike (saps) on March 20, 2016 at 6:12 pm

I’m happy that the Music Hall will be getting some movie traffic

Bill Huelbig
Bill Huelbig on March 20, 2016 at 4:27 pm

I guess Radio City will be getting all the premieres now, since there’s no more Ziegfeld.

rcdt55b: please tell us about it tomorrow!

rcdt55b on March 20, 2016 at 4:25 pm

Didn’t miss it. Wasn’t allowed to talk about it. I will tomorrow if anyone wants to know about it.

Garymb on March 20, 2016 at 2:17 pm

Hi. I am collecting info an Sharkey, a trained seal that was featured in several stage revues at the Music Hall in the ‘40s and '50s. He was in: “Smart Set” (1944),“Heigh Ho!”(1945-6), “Skyline” (1947),“The Ski Valley Express”(1950), and “Star Spangled Revue”(1952). If there is anyone that remembers Sharkey or has any anecdotes, etc., …or knows if he was in any other revues, I would enjoy hearing about them.

One question. I think he was in the 1957 Christmas Spectacular but I have been unable to confirm. He may have been in a 1943 revue as well? Not sure.

Any help is much appreciated. Thanks in advance!

(P.S. – Sharkey was trained by my great-grandfather, Mark Huling, if anybody remembers him)

Jay Franklin Mould
Jay Franklin Mould on February 15, 2016 at 2:58 pm

Anybody have a photo of the two part “Fire Curtain” which was lowered every morning before house opening and lowered and raised every night after the last featured ended? I remember the first morning I worked and saw it the first time wondering what it was. Thanks in advance.

vindanpar on January 26, 2016 at 4:02 pm

For the Music Hall to show classic films it would need an endowment.

And if I were a David Koch I would be the one to give it.

BobbyS on January 21, 2016 at 9:20 pm

Wouldn’t you think Radio City would bring back those big classic beautiful films on that great screen once a month for one day with four showings…has to make more money than having dark days with nothing…popcorn alone might make it work with proper advertising. On the other hand unions in NY which are probably the highest in the nation might make it difficult. But they did it once. Mid-town is perfect with so many people in the area. I can’t wait to attend the new summer show this year. I don’t know much about it, but I hope it plays well into august and has huge crowds which might bring back the concept once again..

vindanpar on December 28, 2015 at 12:05 pm

Just would like to clarify the fact that the score to Scaramouche was recorded in 3 track stereo and the film opened here in the summer of ‘52. Recording of the film started in October of '51. As I said would be interesting to know how it was presented.

Myron on December 25, 2015 at 4:44 am

I also saw Scrooge at Radio City & the sound indeed was awesome. I just had a traumatic incident in my life & seeing Scrooge relieved my depression. I think it was in Dec. 1970. The film never got the accolades it deserved. At leasr the song, Thank You Very Much, got an Oscar nomination!

vindanpar on December 23, 2015 at 5:01 am

When I first started going to the Hall in ‘70 it was $1.75 before 12 weekday mornings and this was when they still had a ballet company, full symphony orchestra and 36 Rockettes. I believe a few months before it had been $1.50.

Of course the films at that point were very weak, things like Sunflower and Private Life of Sherlock Holmes which was so disastrous they had to pull it early and for the first time in Music Hall history and opened the Christmas show before Thanksgiving which at the time was considered too early.

The films only got worse but every once in a while though rarely they got a What’s Up Doc or Play It Again Sam.

Sill I got to see the spectacles Rhapsody in Blue and the Undersea Ballet which were great. Literally missed Bolero by days and though it had been done frequently in the past it was never done again much to my eternal chagrin. It was done again as part of a Encores spectacle but it was a completely new staging and new sets and costumes like the current Nativity. A completely different thing without the Leonidoff imprimatur and therefore not really the Music Hall at all.

robboehm on December 22, 2015 at 11:33 am

Going the Music Hall in the day was THE theatrical experience. The lobby, the lounge and the huge auditorium. The organ, the orchestra on the risers, various stage effects. And all for peanuts. Now you spend $10 plus to sit in a space the size of your living room reclining in a chair similar to the one you have at home.

vindanpar on December 22, 2015 at 6:46 am

And maybe Mr Endres is to modest to say but the presentation of SITR was so spectacular that Vincent Canby in that Sunday Times did a big piece on it(gilt edged he called it.) And you must understand this was in 75 when all the NY critics were droning on endlessly about the American New Wave in all their long essays. Very surprising.

I was there on a Saturday and had never seen the film before not even on TV. I was in shock(you know how us movie fans can be) and sat through it twice. I had never seen such colors before and there seemed to be enough inventiveness for 10 films.

It was one of my 3 greatest movie going experiences.

Also I don’t know if the sound had been put through some fake stereo or what but I have not heard since then Conrad Salinger’s orchestrations with such clarity. Especially in the sound stage sequence when Kelly starts turning on the effects for Reynolds. Listen to what Salinger is doing and imagine it in stereo. Magical. Who knows maybe it was stereo originally! The great score of Scaramouche was recorded in stereo(alas the tracks are lost) and that played at the Hall shortly after Rain the same year. Doubt though if it was presented that way. At this point who knows?

The Music Hall had a great stereo system and this was before Dolby. The analogue stereo was better. Warmer, richer and with greater depth. Not so hard and glassy. And there were no visible speakers!

The memory of the sound in the final musical sequence of Scrooge when all the groups converge still gives me chills. It made the final moments of Finney all the more moving. I was a boy but I was practically lifted out of my seat in exhilaration.

Myron on December 22, 2015 at 6:22 am

I was horrified years ago when there was talk of demolishing the theatre. I spent much of my youth enjoying great films; mostly Audrey Hepburn, not to mention the stage extravaganzas!

RobertEndres on December 22, 2015 at 5:02 am

Actually we did that on a few occasions. MGM wanted to premiere “The Wind and the Lion” there in 70mm, and as a warm up we did “Dr. Zhivago”, “Gone With The Wind” and “200l” in 70mm and the above mentioned “Singing In The Rain” all with the same (shortened) stage show. “Fantasia” was another re-issue as was “1776” which had played there in it’s original release. “The Sting” was another re-issue as mentioned above.

Even so, the re-issues were better than most of the first run films we played in those day. (“Matilda” anyone?) Universal was the only company that really tried to help us, actually four-walling the theatre for the run of “The Sting”, “Smokey and the Bandit” and “MacArthur”. They also picked up “Caravans”, the last movie we played in the movie/stage show format, so we’d have a Christmas attraction that year. As vindanpar points out above, those were pretty bleak days for the Hall.

Mike (saps)
Mike (saps) on December 22, 2015 at 12:14 am

I’m surprised to hear that Radio City presented a re-release as a regular presentation, and with a stage show no less…!

vindanpar on December 21, 2015 at 2:53 pm

She did not mean ‘65 she meant '75. SOM had a run with stage show. I remember it as it was one of the most beautiful 70MM prints of a film I have ever seen and the sound was spectacular. A great movie presentation(maybe I should thank Mr. Endres.)

I didn’t stay for the stage show because by that time they were so pathetic they were unwatchable. By this time there was no ballet and the Rockettes were cut to 30. The great spectacles that made the Hall famous were no longer done. There were relatively few people on that vast stage and sets were simple and unimpressive.

Also at this point so few people were going to the Hall that sometimes the lights were kept a dark blue so you didn’t realize you were only among a couple of hundred people in a theater of 6,000 seats. Of course you knew and it was painfully sad.

The only good thing I could say about the Hall at this point is that they could still could present a movie. Singing in the Rain, Fantasia and The Sting(if only it had opened there!)were also excellent presentations.

Also the Hall was kept unadorned and intact in its art deco magnificence. No extraneous lights, video screens or thunderous ugly Dolby speakers on the choral stairs.

hanksykes on December 21, 2015 at 2:00 pm

Nearly forgot the lights in the seat backs for reading programs no longer worked in the mid-fifties.Post cards of the stage were for sale at the concession stand, but no pin ball machines!

hanksykes on December 21, 2015 at 1:56 pm

Yes about 1956 ticket prices, My Mom and I in that year paid 99cents for the first show at Xmas , plus full length movie,plus 36 rockettes, plus 60 corpse ballet members, probably the pit orchestra was 65 strong (no recorded music),plus 25 male chorus, plus ice skaters,plus comic, plus Wurlitzer organ short concert to start and used again during the Navivity number,plus original waterfall curtain, which you didn’t see walking feet under , plus a 6 page free printed program. As a pricing example the first balcony was $1.25. Plus real scenery not digital! All elevators were used and the bandcar,what an experience, thank you ,thank god I’m old!!!!

RobertEndres on December 21, 2015 at 1:43 pm

It did, but I’ll have to look up the date. We played it in 70mm and on one performance the operators skipped from reel 5 to reel 8 without running 6 and 7. I was relatively new at the time and had to write a letter to the Business Agent registering management’s displeasure. That did cause the run to stick in my mind.

Mike (saps)
Mike (saps) on December 21, 2015 at 1:34 pm

Did it EVER play here?

rcdt55b on December 21, 2015 at 1:07 pm

1/6/65-1/27/65 Father Goose 1/28/65-3/3/65 36 Hours ¾/65-3/31/65 Dear Heart 4/1/65-5/12/65 Operation Crossbow 5/13/65-7/14/65 Yellow Rolls Royce 7/15/65-9/15/65 Sandpiper 9/16/65-11/3/65 Great Race 11/4/65-12/1/65 Never Too Late 12/2/65-1/5/66 That Darn Cat

Sound Of Music did not play here in 1965. I have ALL the original books here that were used by the projectionist since the building opened.