Broadway is one of the main north-south streets in Manhattan, the central borough of New York, New York. It is the only street that runs from the very northern top of the island (in fact, from the Bronx), to almost the very southern tip, where it ends before Battery Park. Diagonally crossing the grid plan of Manhattan streets, it has induced some interesting architecture, such as the famous Flatiron Building.
One famous stretch near Times Square, through which Broadway passes, is the home of many theaters, housing an ever-changing array of commercial, large-scale plays, particularly musicals. This part of Broadway, also known as The Great White Way, draws millions of tourists from around the world. Starring in a successful Broadway musical is considered by most such singers and actors as the ultimate success in their chosen profession, and many songs, stories, and musicals have themselves been based around the idea of such success. The annual Tony Awards recognize some of the most successful new shows and revivals each year.
While the razzmatazz of Broadway appeals to a mass audience, some theatergoers prefer the more experimental, challenging, and intimate performances possible in smaller theaters elsewhere in Manhattan. Such shows are generally referred to as Off-Broadway and Off-Off-Broadway.