Cornish Playhouse at the Seattle Center

Cornish Playhouse at the Seattle Center
Cornish Rentals

Cornish Playhouse at the Seattle Center

Catch a show at the Cornish Playhouse

The Cornish Playhouse at Seattle Center is a vibrant theatrical and educational facility and a landmark of modern architecture. 

Built for the 1962 World’s Fair and now operated by Cornish College of the Arts as its highest-profile venue, the Playhouse presents a full range of performing arts events open to the public. Between the work created by Cornish students and the visiting professional productions from a wide range of community partners, the Cornish Playhouse offers rich experiences not only in theater but also in dance, music, and the visual arts.

As part of its public benefits, the Cornish Playhouse’s Artist Incubator Residencies offer free space for artists to create and test new work.

Grand curtain and theater interior at the Cornish Playhouse Main Auditorium

The Main Auditorium

The Main Auditorium is a flexible performance space that can seat as many as 434 people. It can be used for dance performances, theater productions, screenings, meetings, and more.

people dressed up for party in lobby of the Cornish Playhouse

The Grand Lobby & Courtyard

Built in 1962 and wonders of modern architecture, featuring an illuminated bronze fountain sculpture by James Fitzgerald, eight Gallery Walls, two floors with built-in bars, a Speakeasy room, and space for up to 500 guests.

The Founder's Room at The Cornish Playhouse, with tall tables and mounted artwork

The Founder's Room

The Founder's Room reflects the elegant mid-century architecture of the Cornish Playhouse at Seattle Center, the Founder’s Room is ideal for special events, receptions, meetings, and conferences and can accommodate up to 70 people.

The Marleen and Kenny Alhadeff Studio Theater

The Marleen and Kenny Alhadeff Studio Theater

This climate-controlled studio space is located at the Cornish Playhouse in the Seattle Center. It is suitable for auditions, rehearsals, readings, intimate performances, and private parties. Equipped with a piano, lights, and sound system.


At the Seattle Center


Location & Parking

The Cornish Playhouse and the Alhadeff Studio are located on north end of the Seattle Center grounds. 

The address is 201 Mercer Street. There are various open and covered paid parking lots adjacent to Seattle Center, as well as metered street parking. 

You can also view surrounding parking locations here

Space needle at night

Public Transport

The Cornish Playhouse is easily accessible via multiple bus routes. To access the most up-to-date schedule and route information, try the King County Metro Transit Trip Planner. 

Seattle Center Monorail can whisk you between Seattle Center and Westlake Center in the heart of downtown Seattle. The Monorail departs every 10 minutes from Westlake Center, located at Fifth and Pine Street and every 10 minutes from the station at Seattle Center, located near the base of the Space Needle. Please note that the Monorail does not run during late night or early morning hours. Check their website for current open and close times.


Tickets & Box Office

Whenever there is a public event taking place, the Cornish Playhouse box office opens one hour prior to curtain. If your tickets are being held at Will Call, please plan on picking them up at least 15 minutes prior to showtime. 

Tickets for all performances can be purchased in advance as follows:

  • Cornish College of the Arts Events — Tickets for Cornish College of the Arts’ student productions and events produced by the College may be purchased in advance. 
  • Details for individual events can be found on Cornish’s event calendar
  • Other Events and Activities — Other organizations also use Cornish Playhouse for their events. Please contact the organization sponsoring the event directly for specific details about purchasing tickets. For example, tickets for Seattle Shakespeare Company productions performed at the Cornish Playhouse can be purchased through the Seattle Shakespeare Company’s website.
auditorium with red curtains


Cornish College of the Arts is committed to ensuring that its performance venues are accessible to all patrons. The closest access point for the Cornish Playhouse and Alhadeff Studio is the accessible drop-off area on Mercer Street between the Playhouse and the Seattle Rep Theater. 

In addition to the handicapped parking spots in Mercer Garage, there are four on-street parking spaces on the east side of Warren Avenue North just south of Mercer Street which are designated for exclusive 24-hour use by those with Washington State disability placards. 

Patrons requiring assistance may enter the Cornish Playhouse using the ADA-accessible door on the west side of the building, just south of the west side courtyard entrance. Please ring the doorbell and a staff member will come to assist you. 

For the Alhadeff Studio, please follow the instructions on the outside elevator located at the rear of the Cornish Playhouse.