The proud cornerstone of Pittsburgh's Cultural District, this 2,800-seat Benedum Center for the Performing Arts is home to the Pittsburgh CLO, Pittsburgh Dance Council, Pittsburgh Ballet Theater and the Pittsburgh Opera, as well as first-run Broadway touring productions.
Registered with the National Trust for Historic Places, the Pittsburgh Benedum Center and has been named the "Number One Auditorium in the U.S." by Billboard magazine. It features a stage comparable in size to the Paris Opera House and the New York Metropolitan Opera, and is one of the few theaters in the United States large enough to stage full-cast, first-run Broadway shows.
Benedum Center Facts:
- In 1928, the Stanley Theater cost $3 million to build. In 1987, it reopened as the Benedum Center after a $43 million restoration. Every architectural detail, from the two-and-a-half ton, 50,000-piece crystal chandelier to the aluminum-foil-gilded plaster work to the chaser lights on the Marquee were painstakingly restored to their original glory.
The signature piece of the Benedum Center is the original main chandelier which weighs 4,700 pounds, is 20 feet high and 12 feet wide.
There are over 90 crystal chandeliers, torchieres and sconces in the Benedum, and all but one are original.
At the landing on each staircase in the Grand Lobby are 18-foot high original mirrors meant to be reminiscent of the Hall of Mirrors at the Palace of Versailles.
There are 1,500 feet of brass rail in the theater, most of which is original. On St. Patrick's Day in 1936, the theater flooded within two feet of the balcony. Several men were trapped for three days until police arrived in a motorboat and rescued them.
The Benedum Center for the Performing Arts was named in honor of the Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation, which made the largest contribution toward the restoration of the theater.
Benedum Center Essentials: