On March 31, in honor of what would have been the 100th birthday of James (Jimmy) M. Nederlander, Sr., the Nederlander Organization will dim the lights of their theatres worldwide. Fifteen theatres spread throughout NYC, Los Angeles, Chicago, D.C., and London will dim their lights for one minute at 6:30 PM in the local time of the venue.
Mr. Nederlander began working in the theatre at age seven, sweeping floors for his father, David Tobias (D.T.) Nederlander, in Detroit, Michigan. In the 70 years that followed, Nederlander gained control over a network of theatres, with the Brooks Atkinson, Gershwin, Lunt-Fontanne, Marquis, Minskoff, Nederlander, Neil Simon, Richard Rodgers, and the Palace on Broadway; the Cadillac Palace, CIBC, James M. Nederlander, and The Broadway Playhouse in Chicago; the Pantages in Los Angeles; and the Adelphi, Aldwych, and Dominion in London.
The producer and theatre owner produced more than 100 Broadway musicals and plays over his career, and co-founded the Theater Hall of Fame at the Gershwin Theatre in 1971. He was himself inducted in 1992 for his lifetime achievement.
The National High School Musical Theatre Awards were nicknamed the Jimmy Awards after him, to honor his patronage of the program honoring outstanding young musical theatre performers from across the U.S. He received an Honorary Doctorate of Fine Arts from The University of Connecticut in 2014.