First opened in 1925, the theatre was named after one of America’s greatest classical actors, Edwin Forrest.
Built by the Shuberts, architect Herbert J. Krapp designed the theatre in the Georgian style, which prizes symmetry as well as classic Greek and Roman details.
In 1959, it was renamed in honor of playwright Eugene O’Neill, who died six years prior.
In the late 1960’s, Neil Simon purchased the theatre. Although the theatre did not undergo a name change, the theatre housed a series of Simon’s plays including Last of the Red Hot Lovers, The Prisoner of Second Avenue, and God’s Favorite.
In 1982 Jujamcyn Theatres bought the Eugene O’Neill from Simon and has operated the theatre ever since.
Although the theatre was known as home for flops early in its existence under other names, the O’Neill is now considered one the most desired midsized theatres on Broadway, having housed hits including Sweeney Todd, Spring Awakening, and its present tenant, the Book of Mormon.