The new Drama Book Shop. (Photo: dramabookshop.com)
Bibliophiles and play lovers rejoice! The Drama Book Shop, a century-old establishment that sells everything from show tune sheet music to hot-off-the-press new plays, reopened its doors on Thursday, June 10. After closing its doors in early 2019 due to financial hardship, Hamilton collaborators Lin-Manuel Miranda (creator), Thomas Kail (director), and Jeffrey Seller (lead producer), and James L. Nederlander (theater owner) came together to purchase and revamp the store.
Then, of course, the pandemic hit, delaying the reopening. But today, the shop is open once again to the public but now at its new home at 266 West 39th Street.
“For me, The Drama Book Shop has always been the heart and soul of the New York City theater community,” Miranda said in a press statement. “I sat and read plays there in high school. I discovered incredible artists and new works through staff recommendations. I wrote so many songs from In the Heights in the basement there. I’m excited for the next generation of storytellers and theater lovers to come in, explore, and be inspired.”
The store has a fresh look, designed by Hamilton scenic designer, three-time Tony Award nominee, and Emmy Award winner (Grease: Live) David Korins. Most notable is the swirling “bookworm” Korins created, which twirls and snakes throughout the store. Per an interview with Broadway Direct, the worm is made up of “2,400 books and scripts and scores,” Korins said. “It’s 140 feet long and weighs about 3,500 pounds. The idea was to make a chronological timeline from ancient history — from ancient Greece all the way down to the latest books, spanning 2,500 years of publishing.”
The Drama Book Shop also features a cafe; store and cafe hours are weekdays, 9 AM to 8 PM, Saturdays 10 AM to 6 PM, and Sundays noon to 6 PM. To ensure safety, the store is taking free shopping reservations. The website reads: “For the health and safety of our guests, the Drama Book Shop is operating at a limited capacity and has implemented a timed-entry reservation system. In order to guarantee entry to the bookstore at a specific time, please make a free shopping reservation for priority access.”
Buy local, support small businesses, and head to The Drama Book Shop to curl up with and purchase a book!
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