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Samuel J. Friedman Theatre, New York
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Seating chart with 79 photos

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Samuel J. Friedman Theatre capacity

The Samuel J. Friedman Theatre has a capacity of 626 seats. Section capacities are 402 Orchestra and 224 Mezzanine. Use our interactive seating chart to view 87 seat reviews and 79 photos of views from seat.

Venue overview

Known for much of its life as the Biltmore, the Samuel J. Friedman Theatre has changed ownership - and purpose - a number of times. With stints as a venue for news content and a TV and radio station, the theater eventually closed following a fire in the late 1980s. In the early 2000s, it was renovated and renamed by the not-for-profit Manhattan Theatre Club, who continue to operate the venue today.

The Samuel J. Friedman’s original interior, designed by the Chanin Brothers and architect Herbert J. Krapp, had been made a New York City landmark; after 14 years of fire and water damage, its restoration sought to reconstruct some of the classic features whilst updating the venue for a modern audience. With a reduced seat capacity, better facilities and a bright, elegant design, the theater is now often used for dramas rather than musicals.

Notable productions over the years include Hair (1977), Top Girls (2008), Venus in Fur (2011, for which Nina Arianda won a Best Actress Tony Award) and Margaret Edson’s Pulitzer Prize-winning one-act play, Wit (2012). In recent years, a number of West End transfers have been staged at the Samuel J. Friedman, with Jake Gyllenhaal and Ruth Wilson opening Constellations (2015) and Deborah Findlay reprising her role in The Children (2017).

There are around 650 seats in the Samuel J. Friedman Theatre, spread across the ground-level Orchestra and the Mezzanine above. The Orchestra is slightly larger than the Mezzanine, and is split into Left and Right sections. In the Mezzanine, seats are divided into a large Center section flanked by the Left and Right; the front two rows are also called the Premier Circle. Views of the stage are very good throughout the whole auditorium, with plenty of legroom and a decent rake to ensure sightlines at the back remain clear. Those sitting in the far corners will have slightly less desirable views, but with lower prices here and no truly bad seat in the house, they offer a very good value option for theatergoers on a budget.


• A limited number of lockers are available for storing extra bags
• Bars are on both levels and start serving 45 minutes before performances
• The Premier Circle Lounge is open to MTC’s Patron Program members
• Step-free access from the street into accessible seating
• An elevator serves every level of the theater

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Samuel J. Friedman Theatre Seating Chart

Good value seats

Depending on your budget, there are various good value seating options at the Samuel J. Friedman Theatre. Rows E to J in the Orchestra are cheaper than premium without feeling distant, whilst the Mezzanine’s excellent rake means even the very back rows have plenty to offer with their panoramic views of the stage.

Premium seats

The best seats in the Samuel J. Friedman Theatre are across the front rows of the Center Orchestra and Center Mezzanine. Rows A to D of the Orchestra are excellent for a close-up yet comfortable look at the stage, whilst the Premier Circle in the Center Mezzanine is unrivalled for its wide overhead sightlines.

Recent audience views

Mezzanine E104

AVC00 176 reviews, 3 helpful votes
Samuel J. Friedman Theatre Mezzanine E104 view from seat photo

All the seats in this theater are quite comfortable, with a good amount of leg room. Mezz is raked enough that people sitting in front of you don’t block the view of the stage. A bit far away so you can’t see the faces of the actors clearly. More

Saw The Height of the Storm The Height of the Storm on 12 September 2019


0 votes

Mezzanine C111

monikamejia 5' 7", 42 reviews, 1 helpful vote
Samuel J. Friedman Theatre Mezzanine C111 view from seat photo

The seats and leg room for this theater are great but this is one of the bigger theaters and the overhang for the mezz is further away so the view was a little distant from my seat. Other than that the sound and play I saw were great! More

Visited 23 September 2018


0 votes

Mezzanine B9

chrishuyen 5' 6", 72 reviews
Samuel J. Friedman Theatre Mezzanine B9 view from seat photo

Fantastic seat, there was some space to the left of the seat where I could put my purse or use as extended leg room. It could be a little hard to make out facial expressions at times but it was great for the set of Ink where the back wall plays a large... More

Saw Ink Ink on 25 May 2019

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