The Orpheum Theatre and Golden Gate Theatre, two of San Francisco's most historic auditoriums, will be sold to the parent company of the Ambassador Theatre Group (ATG), according to an announcement by ATG. The sale transfers ownership of the theaters from the Nederlander Company, based in New York. The sale price was not announced.
In recent years, the Golden Gate and Orpheum have primarily been home to touring Broadway musicals such as Les Miserables, West Side Story, Waitress, Rent, The Book Of Mormon and Phantom of The Opera. When the pandemic closed theaters nationwide, the Golden Gate had just opened Sting's musical The Last Ship, while the Orpheum hosted Hamilton. In October 2019, Madonna performed a run of concerts at the Golden Gate.
Based in the U.K., ATG is one of the largest operators of Broadway-style theaters around the globe, and the type of shows on offer at both theaters is not expected to fundamentally change. Local company BroadwaySF had been booking both theaters, following a five-year legal battle that resulted in the dissolving of the theaters' previous operator, SHN.
The currently scheduled season of bookings at the theaters, starting with Mean Girls on July 27, is expected to go on, pending local restrictions on live theater, ATG spokesperson Rick Miramontez told KQED.
After this season's dates are up, Miramontez said, booking will transfer to ATG. Miramontez said that ATG will “welcome the Broadway SF team into its family,” and is open to hiring local BroadwaySF staff. (A representative from BroadwaySF declined to comment.)