by Chris Hale                               Address: 246 W 44th Street 
7 July 2008                                                New York, NY 10036
(212) 239-6200

   The St. James Theatre was built, in 1927, by theatrical producer Abraham L. Erlanger and was originally named the Erlanger Theatre. The architects Warren & Wetmore designed the theatre in elegant Georgian style while the interior was designed by John Aingraldi. In 1932, after the passing of Abraham L. Erlanger, the Astor family purchased the theatre (the Astors already owned the land where the theatre was built), and renamed the property the St. James Theatre after the popular playhouse in London. The St. James Theatre was built on the site where the original Sardi’s restaurant stood. The Shubert Organization owned the St. James Theatre in the late 1930’s until 1957 when the Shuberts were forced to sell the property to William L. McKnight. The St. James Theatre was renovated, in 1957, by William L. McKnight for the new production of the Rodgers and Hammerstein’s play the Flower Drum Song. In 1970, William L. McKnight gave the property to his daughter Virginia and her husband James H. Binger. Together, Virginia and James H. Binger formed the Jujamcyn Amusement Corporation. The large theatre has two balconies and seats 1710. Among the successful productions at this theatre include: The Producers, Swing!, High Society, The Pajama Game, The Who’s Tommy, The Secret Garden, 42nd Street, the revival of A Streetcar Named Desire, Hello, Dolly!, The King and I, A Funny Thing Happened On the Way to the Forum, Peter Pan, Oklahoma!, Pal Joey, and the recent smash hit revival and winner of 3 Tony Awards Gypsy.