Bratton Theater General Information

Bratton Theater seating is reserved. The building is air-conditioned and we recommend you dress accordingly. Restrooms and water fountains are in the lobby area. Food and drink (except water) is not permitted.  

Ticket Information

Admission for main stage theater performances requires a performance ticket purchase. For guests without a Chautauqua Institution gate pass, the performance ticket includes access to the grounds which corresponding to the performance time as outlined here:

If Bratton Theater performance start time is: Ticket provides access to Chautauqua Institution:
Anytime between 1–4 p.m. Noon–8 p.m.
After 4 p.m. 4 p.m.–Midnight

The ticket for performances in Bratton Theater does not include access to the Amphitheater.

Accessibility Information

Access to Bratton Theater’s main entrance on Pratt Avenue requires navigating several sets of stairs. Scooters and wheelchairs can easily enter the front lobby area using the ramp at the rear of the building on Wythe Avenue.

There are a limited number of accessible parking spaces o the rear of Norton Hall, on Root Avenue, and in the Main Lot.  A valid state-issued accessible parking permit is required to park in these spaces, and standard parking rates apply.  

  • To drop off a guest with mobility challenges, a temporary drop-off pass can be obtained at any gate.  We recommend entering through the Welcome Center Main Gate or the Turner Gate.  All guests entering the grounds are required to present a valid gate pass or opera performance ticket.  

  • The Institution provides regularly scheduled complimentary transportation service in the Main Lot and on the grounds during the season. Take the North bus or the Lake Tram for Bratton Theater.

Accessible restrooms are in the lobby.

When the building is open for performances, the assistive listening system will be available.  Bring your own equipment or use our complimentary equipmentavailable for loan during the performance.  Please ask an usher for assistance.

  • Bratton Theater uses a radio frequency (RF) Assistive Listening SystemThe equipment is coil-compatible as long as the guest has a compatible jack/patch cord. Most users own several different sizes just in case.  The system is also helpful for guests who need hearing assistance but don’t have a hearing aid.

For further information contact the Ticket Office at 716-357-6250 or email

About Bratton Theater

theater insideThe Bratton Theater was built in 1885 and is one of the oldest buildings on the grounds of CHQ. It was originally built as a schoolhouse for the summer program and accordingly, its original name was “Normal Hall”. In 2000, with the advocacy of the Friends of Chautauqua Theater Company and a successful Institutional capital campaign, a major renovation took place and the beautiful, 269 seat, newly named Bratton Theater was inaugurated. A major accomplishment in both preservation and renovation, the original laminated beam structure of Normal Hall is still in place today. 

Under the direction of architect Mitchell Kurtz, the renovation garnered several awards including:

  • An Honor Award from the US Institute for Theatre Technology

  • 2001 Adaptive Re-use/Historic Preservation Citation from the New York City Chapter of the American Institute of Architects

  • 2001 Design Award from the Buffalo/WNY Chapter of the American Institute of Architects.


Heirloom Restaurant
Heirloom is a full-service restaurant that is available to hotel guests, CHQ visitors and guests coming from off the grounds for a great dining experience. Heirloom is open 7 days a week and is available and open to the public from June 27 through August 30.

Webb's Captain's Table Restauran
Webb's is a local lakefront eatery serving American dishes in woody, inviting surrounds with views & an upstairs deck. Located at 115 West Lake Rd., Mayville, NY 14757.

La Familia
A fine dining restaurant focusing on fresh seafood and farm fresh produce. Located on grounds, inside St. Elmo's.

We exist to create the meal your family builds memories around. Located at 4837 W Lake Rd., Mayville, NY 14757.

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