Central Park - New York, NY
Enter at 81st St & Central Park West or
79th Street & Fifth Avenue


Free Shakespeare in the Park is performed at the Delacorte Theater in Central Park. The closest and most direct entrance to the theater is at 81st Street and Central Park West. The Delacorte Theater can also be reached from 79th Street and Fifth Avenue.


The Delacorte Theater is easily accessible from the 81st Street stop on the B, C and the 77th Street stop on the 6 subway line. Once in the Park, follow the footpath to the Delacorte Theater.   


The Delacorte Theater is also accessible from the M2, M3, M4, M10 and M79 bus lines. Once in the Park, follow the footpath to the Delacorte Theater. 


For those driving to the Delacorte Theater in Central Park, please note that there are no parking facilities in the Park. We have partnered with Parking Panda, the nationwide leader in online parking reservations, to allow visitors to purchase guaranteed parking at several convenient locations near the Delacorte Theater.

Once purchased, parking passes are emailed instantly and guarantee you access to your selected location. Parking is very limited and locations fill up, so we recommend that you reserve your spot early.

Click to Reserve Your Parking

NYC Parking powered by Parking Panda






What is Free Shakespeare in the Park?

Free Shakespeare in the Park is The Public Theater's annual season of free plays at the Delacorte Theater in New York City's Central Park.

How do I get tickets?

Free tickets are available in the following ways:

In Central Park
Free tickets are distributed via the free lines at the Delacorte Theater in Central Park at 12pm (noon) each day there is a public performance

Mobile Ticket Lottery Powered by TodayTix
On each performance date, a limited number of free tickets are distributed via mobile lottery on the TodayTix app. Download the app to enter.

In the Five Boroughs
On specific dates, a limited number of vouchers for that night’s performance are distributed at a location in one of New York’s five borough to make it easier for all New Yorkers to enjoy Free Shakespeare in the Park.

At The Public Theater
On each performance date, a limited number of vouchers for that night’s performance are distributed via an in-person lottery at The Public Theater, 425 Lafayette Street at Astor Place. Sign-up begins at 11:30am, and the lottery will be drawn at 12pm (noon).


You can also support Free Shakespeare in the Park by making a fully tax-deductible contribution of $500 or more and as thanks for your gift you’ll enjoy reserved seats.

How many tickets can I get by waiting in line?

Each person waiting in line can receive up to two tickets to that night’s performance, subject to availability. To allow as many different people as possible to attend performances throughout the summer, each person will be limited to receiving free tickets to two total performances of each production. Click here for more information.

Are there any separate ticket policies for senior citizens or people with disabilities?

There is a separate in-person line for accessible tickets for senior citizens (65+) and for patrons with disabilities.​  However, to allow as many different people as possible to attend performances throughout the summer, the policies are the same as the regular line as indicated in the previous question. Click here for more information on all of our accessible programs.

Entries for the virtual lottery can be made on the TodayTix app and also on the TodayTix website. Duplicate entries and entries made via both TodayTix app and website will be voided.

Can I reserve seats to Shakespeare in the Park in advance?

Yes - as a thank you for helping to keep Shakespeare in the Park free for all, we are able to offer reserved seats to our Public Supporters and Partners who support our work through their generous donations. Click here for more information or to donate today.

What if it rains?

We will never cancel a performance before it is scheduled to begin. Rain at 7:30pm may clear by 8:00pm, so it is best to always assume the show will perform as scheduled.

In the event of rain or severe weather, the start of the performance may be delayed; however, the performance will begin as soon as it is possible to do so. Performances may also pause for sudden changes in weather, but will resume as soon as weather permits.

If a performance is canceled due to rain, or for any other reason, free tickets are not valid for re-issue or exchange. Umbrellas may not be opened in the theater.​​

Why can't I be in the Park before 6am?

Central Park is closed between the hours of 1:00AM and 6:00AM. NYPD will patrol the Delacorte area and issue summons to anyone in the Park before its official open time. If you choose to line up before 6:00AM, please do so along the east side of Central Park West starting at 81st Street. A Public Theater line monitor will escort the line in at 6:00AM. The Public Theater neither suggests nor condones lining up before the park opens at 6:00AM.

Why are the lines for Shakespeare in the Park so long?

Tens of thousands of free tickets are made available each summer. While we do our best to accommodate everyone who would like to attend a performance, the demand for tickets is always greater than the number of seats we have available. We appreciate your patience and are working very hard to ensure that the process remains as smooth and equitable as possible for all.

Are there group tickets to Shakespeare in the Park?

Tickets are not available for group reservations. If you would like to attend a performance as a group, the group can wait in the line at the Delacorte Theater, or you can consider the Corporate Partners program.

Can I bring food or drinks?

Yes - Ticket holders are allowed to bring food/beverages into the theater as long as everything fits under the seat. However, no glass containers are allowed inside the theater.




By Phone

  • General Info: 212.539.8500

  • Tickets By Phone: 212.967.7555 (10:00 AM to 7:00 PM Mon. - Sat., 12:00 PM to 6:00 PM Sun.)
  • *The Taub Box Office window opens for in-person business daily at 2pm.

By Email