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Broadway consists of the 40 professional theaters scattered across New York City's Theatre District, including the Ambassador, Imperial, Majestic, and Shubert Theatres, among others. Collectively, the theaters are quoted to bring in over $900 million dollars a year. Theatre in New York got its foot-hold during the mid-to-late 1700s, at which time The Park, The Bowery, and The Astor Place Theatres were established. Originally focusing on the works of Shakespeare, Broadway moved in the musical direction during the mid-1800s with productions of "The Black Crook," and the Gilbert and Sullivan "H.M.S. Pinafore," among others. Actors on Broadway make a big distinction between their profession on what they call the "legitimate stage," and other more variety oriented acts like vaudeville and burlesque.
Current masterpieces to hit Broadway for the 2009-2010 season include "Chicago," "South Pacific," "Wicked," "Hair," "Phantom of the Opera," "The Lion King," and "Jersey Boys," to name a few.
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