Social media posts show that workers have been focusing on the amphitheater in recent days.
"I saw some photos online of the amphitheater tragically getting gutted earlier this week, and I wanted to say goodbye before it was completely gone," EVG reader Shane Fleming told me in an email.
So yesterday around sunset, Shane went in for a closer look and shared the following photos. As you can see, the trees surrounding the amphitheater have been cut down, and the seats have also been removed. Only the bandshell remains for now.
"I spent many wonderful afternoons growing up at this amphitheater, and it's crushing to see it go like this," he said.
Here's some history of the amphitheater via the Parks Department website:
In 1941, an amphitheater was built in the park, along with an adjacent limestone recreational building, as part of an urban renewal project for the Lower East Side. During the 1950s, the amphitheater was the site of frequent free Evening-in-the-Park concerts. Joseph Papp (1921-1991), founder of Shakespeare in the Park and the Public Theater, staged Julius Caesar there in 1956. Local schools held their graduation ceremonies there, and the Group of Ancient Drama staged free-of-charge performances of classic Greek plays...
The city is to replace the existing structure with a smaller one at the exact location. (The currently gutted space could seat an estimated 2,500; based on the renderings, the new one looks to hold 400.) In June, the city came up with $4.83 million to include a roof over the new amphitheater.
The city has previously estimated that all work will be completed in East River Park by the end of 2026.
Our previous post has more about what's been happening with ESCR to date.