The Secret Theatre Reviews

  • Oct 21, 2015

    Secret Theatre, 4402 23rd St, Long Island City. The Secret Theatre IS accessible! It is a wonderful space to rehearse or perform. It’s in Long Island City, the first stop into Queens. There are a few buses that come to the area, and the 7 train at Court Square is fully accessible, I’ve never seen the elevator not fully functioning at this stop. The E, M, and G trains also come to this stop but are not wheelchair accessible.

    The Secret Theatre has 2 entrances in the front of the building, with a slight ramp leading up to the building. The set of doors to your left is accessible, the set of doors on the right has one step. Inside the lobby is fully accessible, and the theatre space is accessible with a ramp up a small step onto the stage. The space is like a large black box theatre. For most shows the audience is sitting on chairs on risers, there is plenty of room for wheelchair users to have front row seats!

    I’m not sure if they have a ramp up the small step to the stage all the time, but if you call ahead I’m sure they will have it there for you, the staff is very helpful. The bathrooms are all a nice size, there are 3 private bathrooms and 1 is large enough to be completely handicap accessible, but there aren’t any grab bars. I did overhear the owner mention that he may install some! There isn’t a water fountain, but if you’re there for a show there are concessions in the lobby. If you’re performing in a show there, the hallway behind the stage is a bit tight but accessible, the dressing room is accessible (unless there’s a big cast, then it’s very cramped!) but the bathroom in the dressing room is not accessible.

    I like that this venue is on the ground floor and there’s never more than 1 step to get anywhere!

    Accessibility_active This review was written by a disabled artist.

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  • Oct 23, 2015

    The Secret Theatre is a small off-off Broadway theater located in Long Island City. For new comers to the space, the first thing that needs to be said is that a large green gate hides the entrance to the theater. Therefore, management has placed signage, such as posters, on the gate so visitors are aware that they are in the correct location.

    As you walk inside the theater, there are three immediate things that must be stressed. First, there is absolutely no parking in the space in front of the theater. The space serves as an active driveway for the company next door. Therefore, if an actor or someone in your company parks there car in the space, there is a chance of the vehicle being towed away. Therefore, it is highly recommended that all visitors utilize the other forms of transportation. For those who are disabled, and would enjoy taking the train, the 7 train stops at Court Square. The Court Square location is three blocks away from the theater and possesses three elevators, which can be utilized to maneuver from street level to the platform in any direction you wish to commute.

    The second thing I want to stress is that there are two doors that can be utilized when entering the lobby of the theater space. The door on the left has wheelchair signage and is the designated door for patrons or company members with disabilities. However, be advised that management will not open the wheelchair-accessible entrance until the time you are slated for. Therefore, if you are early you will just have to return when you are scheduled to be in the space.

    The final thing I want to stress is that the theater lobby is small. Therefore, there have been multiple occasions when a disabled person needs to enter and there is a lot of clustered material in the lobby. When that situation happens, the staff is very gracious in creating a clear path thus allowing the individual (s) to move freely within the lobby and comfortably enter the performance space.

    Once you enter the theater, one can clearly see the pros and cons of the theater. First, there are four restrooms in the theater space. There is one restroom in the actor’s dressing room area and the other three are located in the house/audience area. While there are four restrooms only the first restroom in the audience area is ADA compliant. Second, there are two large steps leading to the stage/ audience area (one on the left entrance and one on the right entrance). It is difficult to say if these steps will pose a problem for ADA patrons and actors because wooden ramps were made and given to the theater. However, I am unsure if they still possess the ramps as the theater space is constantly changing with every production.

    Overall, it is difficult to recommend this space for disabled artists, as there is an unknown variable. However, if the ramps are in place, disabled artists can utilize the space for rehearsals or performances.

    Accessibility_active This review was written by a disabled artist.

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