ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — The Egg has been a performing arts venue in the Empire State Plaza since 1978. The venue has hosted thousands of concerts, lectures, presentations, comedy shows, musicals and educational programming over the years.
Here is the history of The Egg, according to its website.
Construction began on The Egg in 1966. It was completed 12 years later in 1978. The Egg is owned by New York State and managed by the not-for-profit Nelson A. Rockefeller Empire State Plaza Performing Arts Center Corporation.
The Egg is well-known for its unusual shape that echoes its name. It was designed by American architect Wallace Harrison. The stem that holds structure goes six stories deep into the Earth. The Egg keeps its shape by wearing a girdle, which is a heavily reinforced concrete beam that was poured along with the rest of the shell. This beam helps pass on The Egg’s weight to the supporting pedestal.
The Egg has two theatres: the Lewis A. Swyer Theatre and the Kitty Carlisle Hart Theatre. The Swyer Theatre has 450 seats and is used for chamber music concerts, cabaret, lectures, multimedia presentations, solo performers and educational programming. The Hart Theatre seats 982 and is used for larger productions including musical theatre, dance and music concerts.
There are almost no straight lines or harsh corners inside The Egg. Walls along the edge curve up to meet the concave ceiling light. The walls are made of Swiss pearwood veneer which adds warmth and enhances the acoustics in both theatres.
The Egg has a number of special series each year including American Roots & Branches, Arts-in-Education Performances, Dance in Albany, Family Wonders, Guest Comedy Presentations, Guest Dance Performances, Guest Music Presentations and Rhythm International.
Past performances have included Barenaked Ladies, Cheap Trick, Goo Goo Dolls, and Pat Benatar, as well as comedians Hannibal Buress, Wanda Sykes, Weird Al Yankovic, Bo Burnham, and Jimmy Fallon.
“Visually distinctive, yet ingenious, The Egg is a beautiful synthesis of form and function,” said The Egg website.