Longtime off-Broadway and Broadway producer Eric Krebs has taken on the theater most recently used by the Upright Citizens Brigade (UCB), to create a new 160-seat venue called Theater 555.
UCB left the space at 555 West 42nd Street (between 10/11th Avenues) at the start of the COVID pandemic in March 2020. Previously, the theater had been the home of Signature and Pearl Theater companies.
Theater 555 will be owned and operated by Krebs. He’s no stranger to W42nd Street and Hell’s Kitchen — his career included the building and operating of the former John Houseman and Douglas Fairbanks Theaters on Theater Row from 1984 until 2005.
“For years I have longed for another off-Broadway theater. During the last year, every time I rode my bicycle past this lovely theater, I wondered what its future would be. Well, now I know,” Krebs announced today. “There is nothing more satisfying for me than to be welcoming new projects into a terrific intimate theater.”
Krebs created the 62-seat Playroom Theater on W46th Street, that hosted many off-Broadway projects over 10 years until it was forced to close during the pandemic.
Krebs expects Theater 555 to be available for short and long-term rentals starting in September. However, he might well be using the space for his own productions too.
“I have a lot of beloved projects that I have worked on over 50 years of producing. Before I vanish, I would love to see many of them as short-term runs in this beautiful theater, a kind of retrospective of My Life in Art. The usage will be a mixture of commercial rentals and ‘love child’ personal projects,” he said.